The American Institute of Architecture Students’ (AIAS) Beyond Architecture Campaign allows students to make meaningful contributions their communities. Volunteering to serve as honorary chair for this national initiative is Michael Graves, who will lead the goal of raising at least $2 million to support the campaign’s Freedom by Design program.

Freedom by Design is a community service program that allows architecture and design students to serve people in their communities with design and construction solutions. Currently underway in more than 30 college and universities communities throughout the United States, Freedom by Design projects improve the life safety, identity, and comfort of low-income individuals with physical disabilities.

“I am dedicated to providing great design to people with disabilities,” said Graves. “I am pleased to support the efforts of the AIAS and excited about the good work offered by the Freedom by Design program.” Helping those with physical disabilities is of special internet to Graves, who was paralyzed from the chest down in 2003 as the result of an infection.

James P. Cramer, Hon. AIA, principal and chair of the Greenway Group Inc., is general campaign chair for the endeavor. “The American Institute of Architecture Students is an important and meaningful organization that is working to make the architecture profession increasingly attractive to the most talented young people in America,” he said. “I believe that a strong AIAS translates into a strong profession in the future.”

According to HKS Chairman and Chief Executive Officer H. Ralph Hawkins, FAIA, FACHA, who chairs the architecture firms division of the Freedom by Design campaign, “All of us at HKS are committed to seeing AIAS reach its $2 million goal. We strongly encourage all practitioners to look deep within themselves as professionals and see the importance of these funds toward the development of our young students and the impact they make on our firms and organizations. It is impactful and a profound gift for them and for our profession.”

The campaign has already secured $1 million in commitments. To learn more and to support the initiative, go to

{beyondarch, align=left}Left to right, seated: 2006-2007 AIAS President Jonathan Bahe, Assoc. AIA; Michael Graves, FAIA; and James Cramer, Hon. AIA. Standing: AIAS Executive Director Michael Geary; 2008-2009 AIAS President John Blanchard; 2007-2008 AIAS President Andrew Caruso, Assoc. AIA, LEED-AP; 2007-2008 AIAS Vice President Tony Vanky; and Autodesk University Programs Eastern U.S., Peter Mancini. Photo courtesy AIAS.