“What study abroad does is take us to places that were made in a snapshot in time, but that have had a life after that.”
Roy Euker, a New York architect, and his wife, Phyllis, were an adventuring couple, traveling across nine countries in Europe to explore landmarks from the Guggenheim Museo Bilbao in Spain and Paris’ Villa Savoye to the Victor Horta House and Studio in Brussels and Rietveld Schröder House in the Netherlands.
In 2008, when his wife suddenly passed away, Euker wanted to honor her memory by giving young aspiring architects the same opportunity to explore the continent’s rich architectural history and diverse cultures.
He found in the School of Architecture and Planning a perfect match for his philanthropic aspirations.
Since establishing the Phyllis Euker European Architecture Travel Fund in 2009 through a generous endowment, Roy Euker has already helped send 11 students to Europe. In addition to defraying the cost of study abroad, the scholarships support their scholarly wanderlust as they roam across Europe’s great historic cities and take in their architecture and culture.
Says dean Robert Shibley: “There is the idea that place has a life over time, that is made, that is managed, and that changes. As architects, we can lose touch with that because we often do the work and then go get the next job,” says Shibley. “What study abroad does is take us to places that were made in a snapshot in time, but that have had a life after that. So you are always rooted in a place that’s becoming. When you design with that understanding, you design differently.”