Keith Knowles

Class of '93

Place of service: Architects in Schools

Why I Serve

My volunteerism direction comes from a desire to treat our planet as God asked us to treat it—we are stewards of his gift of creation to us. I want future generations to be equipped to improve our environment, or deal with the issue previous generations have created.

How I Serve

I work with children through the Architects in Schools program to help them understand the importance of good design for our community and our environment. I get to work with third through fifth grade classes every spring in a six week residency. I’m partnered with an architect and we create a project with the students that aligns with their coursework. This last year, in my son’s fourth grade class, we learned how Native Americans designed their dwellings and communities around their food source. Plains Indians were mobile to follow herds of buffalo, while coastal Indians were stationary near their fishing grounds. We applied principles of design, architecture and sustainability to enhance their experience with learnings about the Oregon Trail.

Kim Ruthardt Knowles (Class of ’93) runs the Architects in Schools program throughout Oregon. The program touched over 3,000 students in classrooms from Portland to Ashland and Bend, Oregon.