From February 2nd-4th, the annual AIA Virginia Prize competition was held, highlighting a collaborative tradition between AIA Virginia and five architecture programs in the Commonwealth – VT, UVA, Hampton, JMU, and the WAAC. Every year, the competition aims to foster a collective conversation in architecture and honor student accomplishments across Virginia. Finalists from each school can progress to the State level, where they have the opportunity to receive additional recognition and awards.

The competition brief for this year focused on designing an innovative public library in Phoebus, VA. It encouraged participants to create a “bookless” library, emphasizing Wi-Fi connectivity, digital collections, and services. The main design challenge was to blend these modern concepts with a shared community room, fostering an inviting space for both individuals and groups.

Congrats to the state competition winners!


1st Place: Graham Gewirz (UVA)

2nd Place: Philip Edmonston (UVA)

3rd Place: Kanako Kohara (VT: WAAC)

Honorable Mention: Mohammed Elabbasi (VT: Blacksburg)


Congrats to the recognized students by our Blacksburg faculty jurors: Kay Edge, Kevin Jones, Shelley Martin, and Frank Weiner!!

See our winners and honorable mentions in the photos above.