An asset to both the local and global design community, HY William Chan from the University of Sydney is a most outstanding recipient of the 2014 Student Prize for the Advancement of Architecture. The Bachelor of Design in Architecture graduate’s contributions to the architecture industry, the broader community and interdisciplinary initiatives associated with sustainable design and humanitarian aid work has been extensive.
The young recipient has proven himself as a leader among his peers through his role as a delegate, ambassador and committee member of a number of global task forces and forums. These include a speaking appointment at One Young World in Zurich in 2011, and his involvement in the UN-Habitat’s World Urban Forum 6 in 2012, where he helped to draft the World Urban Youth Declaration.
In 2010 Chan was named as one of Australia’s top one hundred Brightest Young Minds, and was the youngest designer to participate in VIVID Sydney in 2012. After attending the Global Studio tour to Johannesburg in 2008 – a program informed by the UN Millennium Development Goals – Chan was appointed an international associate for Global Studio’s 2012 India project, which was presented at the American Institute of Architects’ New York chapter’s Global Dialogues at the Centre for Architecture. Other high-profile exhibitions he has been involved with include the 2012 Venice Biennale, the 2009 Rotterdam Biennale and Earth Institute Centre’s People Build Better Cities architecture exhibition.
Chan’s commitment to sustainable design is evident in his extensive involvement in the national committees and initiatives of the Australian Youth Climate Coalition, the Australian Institute of Architects’ National Review Panel on Climate Change and the Australia and New Zealand Student Architecture Congress. He was an Australian delegate at the 2009 UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen (COP15), is a Green Building Council of Australia Future Green Leader and is involved in the sustainability committee of his employer, Hassell. He has contributed to various Australian and New Zealand design print publications and participated in debates at the UN Youth Assembly, Architecture Sans Frontières and spoken at several events including Arup’s global events series, The Penguin Pool.
At a local level, Chan has been an advocate for architecture within his own community by participating in design outreach projects to encourage rural and disadvantaged youth to join the profession, and has advocated for student rights and architecture curriculum, resources and policy changes as an Academic Board representative at the University of Sydney.
Chan has conducted this extensive extracurricular activity while maintaining a high standard of design work recognized by various medals, scholarships and design awards, most recently receiving the University Medal for his honours thesis review on Common Ground Sydney.
The jurors congratulate HY William Chan as the deserving winner of the 2014 Student Prize for the Advancement of Architecture, and are confident that his leadership will continue to contribute to the profession for many years to come.
Jury Professor Paul Berkemeier LFRAIA (chair) Australian Institute of Architects National President, Paul Berkemeier Architect; Alysia Bennett PHD candidate, Monash University; Peter Nguyen SONA Vice-President; Professor Stephen Loo RAIA Head of School, University of Tasmania.