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IDC Foundation Awards More Than $7 Million in Grants to Support Higher Education in Architectural Design, Engineering, and Building Construction in Greater New York City


New Foundation is Legacy of the Institute of Design and Construction, Which Trained More Than 30,000 New Yorkers in Those Same Fields Before Closing in 2015


New York, NY – May 9, 2018 – The IDC Foundation announced today that it has awarded $7.3 million in grants to support higher education in architectural design, engineering, and building construction at five institutions in Greater New York City. The newly established foundation is a legacy of the Institute of Design and Construction, the former Brooklyn-based, nonprofit, technical college that educated more than 30,000 students between its founding in 1947 and its closing in 2015. The Foundation focuses particularly on funding transformational programmatic initiatives that promote innovative approaches to education in those industries and enhance the learning experience of students.


The Institute was founded and led by architect and New York State Assembly Member Vito P. Battista (1909-1990). He arrived with his parents in New York from Italy at age three and, after becoming an architect, believed passionately in providing others with the opportunity that he had – to create a better life through a career in architecture and related construction. While still in his 30s, he founded the Institute of Design and Construction. When the Institute closed 68 years later, the sale of its property in downtown Brooklyn made possible a grant to endow the IDC Foundation, which continues the Institute’s mission to provide training and improve practices in those fields.


The IDC Foundation provides grants to institutions of higher education in Greater New York City to do the following: (a) fund scholarships for undergraduate and professional students preparing for careers in fields relating to architectural design, engineering, and building construction; (b) provide fellowships to enhance educational opportunities for such students; (c) encourage and support such students through activities such as travel and other student experiences, and (d) support research and educational programs relevant to the architectural design, engineering, and building construction industry.


Four institutions received grants for research and educational programs ranging from $500,000 to more than $1 million. Those grants will enable the institutions to jumpstart larger visions. The institutions and programs are as follows:


  • The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art – IDC Foundation funding will create the IDC Foundation Art, Architecture, Construction, and Engineering (AACE) Lab at Cooper Union to serve as a catalyst for integration across disciplines. Building on existing cross-disciplinary initiatives at Cooper Union, each school’s strengths will be integrated around projects of “making” that create outcomes larger than the sum of the parts of individual disciplines. Having these new technologies in-house will position the faculty and deans to reimagine curricula and give students and faculty the tools they need to research new protocols of fabrication, test out methods for optimization, and develop new materials and methods for practical design and construction applications.


  • New York Institute of Technology – IDC Foundation funding will infuse NYIT’s School of Architecture and Design with a collaborative “culture of making” by exploring latent potentials at the boundaries of architecture, medical and healthcare professions across an untapped range of global health concerns and combining design thinking with advanced digital technologies and sophisticated fabrication equipment in state-of-the-art facilities.


  • New York University Tandon School of Engineering – IDC Foundation funding will enable the Tandon School of Engineering to create the IDC Design and Construction Chair in the Department of Civil & Urban Engineering. The IDC Chair is expected to lead NYU Tandon’s efforts to establish the IDC Foundation Initiative for Construction Innovation (ICI). ICI is envisioned as an industry-supported center that conducts world-class, research, educational, and outreach activities, guided by the active involvement of leaders from the architecture, engineering, and construction community.


  • Pratt Institute – IDC Foundation funding will enable Pratt Institute to create a New Technologies and Fabrication Research Initiative that will address the critical need for advanced experience-based learning that provides research and entrepreneurial skills for undergraduate architecture students. Participating students will innovate by making prototypes with new building technologies and will face real-world problems at full-scale.


In addition, the IDC Foundation has provided an initial grant to Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation to support scholarships, fellowships, and student travel. All five institutions, who are a part of the inaugural cohort of grant recipients, have received grants of between $110,000 and $130,000 for this purpose, to enrich student experiences for undergraduate and professional students preparing for careers in fields relating to architectural design, engineering, and building construction. Those experiences include travel for students to explore design and construction practices in other parts of the world.


“The IDC Foundation is a new philanthropic vehicle for education in architectural design, engineering, and building construction,” said Raymond R. Savino, President of the IDC Foundation. “The Foundation honors the vision of Vito Battista and the Institute of Design and Construction and extends their legacy of advancing opportunity in Greater New York City to new generations seeking to study, join, and lead those industries.”

For more information, contact Henry Miller –


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