Two LSU College of Art & Design graduating seniors, Atianna J. Cordova and Maria Muñoz, have been selected to the Tiger Twelve Class of 2016.
Students selected to the Tiger Twelve represent the “highest standards of academic, personal, and social integrity; practice justice, equality, and compassion in human relations;” and “respect the dignity of all persons and accept individual differences.” To be eligible for the Tiger Twelve, a student must demonstrate through scholarship, actions, and contributions, the principles presented in the LSU Commitment to Community.
Atianna J. Cordova will graduate this May 2016 with a Bachelor of Architecture. A native of New Orleans, Louisiana, Atianna is passionate about using design as a tool to assist marginalized groups and those affected by natural disasters. She is recognized as the LSU School of Architecture’s first Ronald E. McNair Research Scholar; her McNair research project is entitled “Conceptualizing Informalities: Designers Learning from the Informal Community Developments of Homeless Individuals.” Atianna has demonstrated leadership as a member of the College of Art & Design Dean’s Student Advisory Council and as a fourth- and fifth-year class representative of the LSU School of Architecture and LSU’s National Organization for Minority Architecture Students mentor/mentee program. She has shown a dedication to her studies through scholastic achievements and has been recognized on the LSU President’s Honor Roll and Dean’s List and by the National Society of Collegiate Scholars and the Black Faculty and Staff Caucus’s Black Scholars Awards.
Recently, Atianna was awarded a 2016 University of California at Berkeley Undergraduate Prize for an Architectural Design Excellence Travel Fellowship. She will attend LSU’s “Haiti: Cultural Sustainability” Academic Program Abroad this summer to further her research regarding architecture and homelessness. One of several aims of the program is to examine the sheltering strategies and resources that have been employed to assist those affected by the 2010 earthquake. Upon returning to the United States, Atianna will continue her desire to serve disadvantaged groups by working in an urban planning firm and attending Tulane University’s Disaster Resilience Leadership Academy.
“We are so proud of this recognition for Atianna,” said Jori Erdman, director of the LSU School of Architecture. “It’s another demonstration of the accomplished work being done by students in the school.”
Maria Muñoz, of Centerville, Ohio, will graduate this May 2016 with a Bachelor of Landscape Architecture and minors in French, geography, and Spanish. Originally from Puerto Rico, Maria has noted that she was exposed to and rooted in a culture with a history that is intertwined with landscape ecology.
“Moving to the United States, I realized that we are each a reflection of our community. My interest in the relationship of humans and their environment has inspired me to work as an activist of cultural individualities and recreational needs of communities,” Maria shared. “I feel honored to be selected as a part of the Tiger Twelve class. I’ve admired other students who have achieved this since my freshman year, so it means a lot to me.”
During her senior year, Maria served as president of the LSU student chapter of the ASLA, the official student organization recognized by the American Society of Landscape Architects. In addition, Maria is active in LSU’s Hispanic Student Cultural Society and the African American Cultural Center and is involved in the Baton Rouge community with local beautification and recreation efforts. In 2014, Maria was one of three students in the nation to receive an ASLA Council of Fellows Scholarship, and in 2015, Maria was the undergraduate winner of the 2015 Olmsted Scholars program—a $15,000 prize. The Olmsted Scholars program recognizes and supports students with exceptional leadership potential who are using ideas, influence, communication, service, and leadership to advance sustainable planning and design and foster human and societal benefits. Maria’s goal after graduation is to work with urban development both locally and globally. She, too, will attend Tulane University’s Disaster Resilience Leadership Academy and wants to incorporate the significance of design with economic speculation, political negotiation, and democratic struggle as unique pieces that shape a society’s urbanization.
“Maria is an outstanding student who has excelled academically while also taking on significant service and leadership roles both in the school and the university,” stated Mark Boyer, director of the LSU Robert Reich School of Landscape Architecture. “We are so proud of her accomplishments and pleased that others have recognized and awarded her excellence.”
The Tiger Twelve Class of 2016 will be introduced at the LSU baseball game on Wednesday, April 20, at 6:30 p.m., as the Tigers take on Southeastern Louisiana University in Alex Box Stadium. Tickets for this game can be purchased online here. The Tiger Twelve Class of 2016 will also be recognized at a reception held on April 23 in the Rotunda of the LSU Business Education Complex.