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OUT in FRONT: Justice, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion

OUT in FRONT: Justice, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, is a fresh take on a favorite biannual event by the UW Landscape Architecture Professional Advisory Council. OUT in FRONT is a showcase for local firms to share innovative and exciting design work with students and the larger professional design community. This year’s event encourages professionals to share work that highlights JEDI principles, practices, or inquiries.

Shantol Morgan (BLA ’25) awarded inaugural LAF Ignite Scholarship

Shantol Morgan, BLA 2025, has been awarded the LAF Ignite Scholarship, joining an inaugural cohort of four students. LAF Ignite is a unique program within the landscape architecture community and design professions, designed to overcome particular barriers faced by BIPOC students to stay in school, graduate, and enter landscape architecture practice.

CBE hosts Project Pipeline, architecture camp for underrepresented youth

The College of Built Environments was happy to host NOMA’s Project Pipeline in Gould Hall. Throughout the week, 45 volunteers were there to help the kids learn and 12 youths participated this year, a number they hope continues to grow. They were able to take a tour of the college and campus, and hear from Dean Cheng and CBE professors.

Elevating the Spirit: Dean Renée Cheng on Architecture’s Role in Our Lives

Haley Ha, SAM’s Manager of Public Engagement at the Asian Art Museum, spoke with Dean Cheng about her background, why equity matters in architecture, and how architecture can respond to ecological concerns. Dean Cheng participated in the University Lecture of the 2022–2023 series at the Seattle Asian Art Museum. | SAMBlog

Honoring Black History Month – A Message from the CBE Diversity Council

The CBE Diversity Council, made up of Faculty, Staff, and Students, recently shared a message in honor of Black History Month that celebrates the contributions of a few Black scholars and built environment professionals. We invite you to take the time to honor Black History Month and participate in the observance in some way! Read the message below and see a selection of resources shared to help you in your learning about justice, equity, and inclusion.

Dear CBE Community,

As we enter February, we begin the celebration of Black History Month, an annual observance that was first proposed by Black educators and the Black United Students at Kent State University in February 1969. This observance was then formally recognized by the US president in 1976, and has been practiced ever since. Now, in 2022, in the face of continued oppression and structural racism, we continue to celebrate Black History Month as a way to honor Black life, voices, history and art and the African diasporic peoples who have built this nation.

We wish to honor the contributions of Black scholars and built environment professionals who have thrived despite racism to help build a better world. We call out a few initiatives that have inspired us, including:

Nehemiah Initiative created to empower the African-American community by to supporting the retention of historically Black institutions by advocating for development of real property assets owned by historically Black institutions

Wa Na Wari – a Seattle Central Area-based non-profit organization that creates space for Black ownership, possibility, and belonging through art, historic preservation, and connection

CBE Black History Highlight

Here we would like to highlight a member of our community, Maisha Barnett, a recent CBE graduate and staff member currently in the role of Assistant to the Associate Deans.  Maisha and her family have had profound and lasting impacts on the City of Seattle and WA State more broadly.  Her great paternal grandfather, John Conna, was head of the first Black family in Tacoma and was recently honored with the City of Federal Way Black History Month Proclamation.  A successful Real Estate Broker, Conna actively recruited African Americans to migrate to the PNW and later became the first Black political appointee in the history of Washington.  In addition, Maisha’s paternal grandfather, Powell Samuel Barnett, was a Seattle-based musician, civil rights activist, and African American community leader.  He was recognized for his work during his life and in 1969 Powell Barnett Park was named for him.  Maisha’s father, Douglas Quinton Barnett, was a Black theater and arts advocate recognized posthumously with Douglas Q. Barnett Street named in his honor in November 2020.  Maisha carries on the legacy and impact that her family has had in Seattle through her work in public space development and service on numerous park boards and commissions.  We are proud to have her as part of our CBE community!

For those interested in learning more around justice, equity, and inclusion, check out the list below, which represents just some of the vast resources on this subject.

Please take the time to honor Black History Month and participate in the observance in some way!

In solidarity,

CBE Diversity Council

*Some of the resources below were pulled from existing sources across campus and we thank the School of Public Health and the Samuel E. Kelly Ethnic Cultural Center, among others, for their work and willingness to share

READ – books, essays, articles, poems

  • Ain’t I A Woman: Black Women and Feminism, by bell hooks

  • Beloved by Toni Morrison

  • Between the World and Me by Ta Nehisi Coates

  • Black Landscapes Matter by Kofi Boone

  • Black Faces, White Spaces: Reimagining the Relationship of African-Americans to the Great Outdoors by Carolyn Finney

  • Citizen: An American Lyric by Claudia Rankine

  • Emergent Strategy by adrienne maree brown

  • Gang of Four by Bob Santos

  • Gather the Bones by Jesmyn Ward

  • Heavy by Kiese Layman

  • Here for It: Or, How to Save Your Soul in America by R. Eric Thomas

  • I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings and other writings by Maya Angelou

  • Incognegro by Mat Johnson

  • Karamo: My Story of Embracing Purpose, Healing, and Hope by Karamo Brown

  • Kindred by Octavia Butler

  • Letter from Birmingham Jail by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr

  • March by John Lewis

  • Miles Morales Spider Man by Jason Reynolds

  • My Grandmother’s Hands by Resmaa Menakem

  • Notes of a Native Son by James Baldwin

  • Real Life by Brandon Taylor

  • Sister Outsider: Essays and Speeches and other works by Audre Lorde

  • So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo

  • Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America by Ibram X. Kendi

  • Teaching to Transgress: Education as the Practice of Freedom by bell hooks

  • The Blood of Emmett Till by Timothy B. Tyson

  • The Color Purple by Alice Walker

  • The Fire Next Time, by James Baldwin

  • The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

  • The Inner Work of Racial Justice by Rhonda V. Magee

  • The Negro Artist and the Racial Mountain, and other writings by Langston Hughes

  • The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander

  • The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson

  • Until I Am Free: Fannie Lou Hamer’s Enduring Message to America, by Keisha Blain

  • When Ivory Towers Were Black by Sharon Sutton

  • Women, Race and Class by Angela Davis


LISTEN – music, music videos & podcasts


LOOK – TV, movies, visual art


BUY – Enjoy goods and services from Black-owned businesses


CARE – Mental health & wellbeing resources

College of Built Environments
Diversity Council