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The Best Value Schools scholarship committee is pleased to announce another shining recipient of the Best Value Schools STEM Scholarship for Women. A $2,000 scholarship has been awarded to Vionna Wai, a fourth year student at The CUNY City College of New York. Vionna is pursuing a five-year bachelor's program in architecture at the Bernard & Anne Spitzer School of Architecture with a minor in Art Studio. She plans to use the funding to open opportunities for studying abroad, researching sustainable design, and potentially pursuing a master's degree.

Though not a "classical" STEM field, architecture embodies all aspects of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Architecture is an in-demand field often dominated by males, but Vionna demonstrates the spirit needed to pave the way for more female architects, especially Asian Americans. She strives to break stereotypes in the design and construction industry. Vionna Wai is an intelligent young woman who has maintained an impressive collegiate GPA of 3.8.

Building a Bright Future in Architecture

Vionna is currently working as a project engineer intern for Turner Construction Co., one of America's largest construction management companies. She reviews proposals, tracks building reports, works with subcontractors, and schedules inspections for notable properties across New York City. She has helped create logistics plans for Times Square Marriott Marquis Hotel, Brooklyn Bridge Park, Greenwich Citigroup Headquarters, and more. Her outstanding work led to her receiving the Turner Construction YouthForce2020 Scholarship.

Giving back through volunteer work is also important to Vionna. She serves as a mentor through the Spitzer School of Architecture Mentorship Program to help incoming freshmen, especially female students, adjust to college life. She takes great pride in setting an example and inspiring newer generations to become architects. Vionna is a member of the American Institute of Architecture Students (AIAS) and was voted the Public Relations Director for Freedom by Design. She leads a construction team and tackles the fundraising on building projects for people with disabilities.

In her collegiate career, Vionna Wai has showcased her talent for turning visionary ideas into physical form. She and her partner were deemed first place winners for the SSA Brick Design Competition in 2015. Her design was recognized for its excellence in the CityWorks Vol. 9 publication. Vionna was offered the valuable opportunity to conduct research in Berlin, Germany last summer with WBM Housing Association. Her group came up with urban planning solutions for climate change for the Regula Lüsche, the Berlin Senate Building Director. Vionna has also completed training to become OSHA 30 Certified.

The Best Value Schools committee believes that Vionna Wai is a true STEM advocate for women. Her tremendous ambition, leadership skills, and aptitude for architecture are admirable. As the daughter of Chinese immigrants, Vionna impressed us with her unwavering commitment to designing affordable and sustainable housing for underprivileged communities. We know that the financial support will be put to great use as she helps build better living environments for all. Congratulations, Vionna!

Don't Miss Your Next Opportunity

Think you have what it takes to be our next scholarship winner? We invite you to share your story on how you're contributing to the advancement of science, engineering, technology, or math. Our Best Value Schools STEM Scholarship for Women provides $2,000 in tuition expenses twice each year to outstanding women in STEM fields. Please check back often to find news and updates on our next application cycle!

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