Aeschbacher named to Distinguished Honors Faculty Program

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Peter Aeschbacher, associate professor of landscape architecture and architecture at Penn State's H. Campbell and Eleanor R. Stuckeman School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture, has been named Schreyer Honors College Distinguished Honors Faculty Program member 2013-15.

His "Getting to Work: Innovation, Public Scholarship, and Ethics for Schreyer Scholars" will present a series of seminars and workshops that will guide Schreyer Scholars through a process of reflective exploration of the practice and the ethics of their work. Formulating a position in regards to the personal, disciplinary and societal formulations of "work" is a central part of education and of developing a confident individuality, membership in a professional and scholarly discipline, and active citizenship in their larger communities. The reflective seminars and applied workshops will address the significance, ethics, creativity and public purpose of their work in four corresponding sections: Meaningful Work, Good Work; Creative Work and Public Work.

According to Aeschbacher, "One’s work represents our creative and productive contribution to our world. Work provides the opportunity to create things of value and significance, and to gain confidence, authority and the satisfaction of building our communities. Students attend university to find their work, build disciplinary bodies of knowledge, and eventually go forth and do work. At the same time, universities seek to help students find their work and to give disciplinary knowledge a larger context by broadening intellectual horizons, revealing the value of work to society through civic engagement opportunities and facilitating students’ abilities to engage the world through critical thinking." Schreyer Scholars are expected and enabled to excel in these tasks and to achieve positions of leadership.

The series will have four parts: Meaningful Work focus on the students themselves, working with them to develop their personal engagement with conceptions of work. Good Work  explores the role of disciplines and professions in defining “good work." Creative Work explores creativity, invention, and originality in the sciences, arts and humanities. Public Work situates efforts within a relational and societal context -- the larger set of communities and the issues of common concern that confront them.

"Getting to Work" proposes a deliberative and reflective exploration of ideas of work and the ethics of doing work. Participants will have the opportunity to define their roles as professionals, scholars and citizens, and to reflect on how they can make a meaningful contribution through their work. They will have the opportunity to consider a number of basic questions: What is the nature of work when it is oriented towards addressing public issues and building a commonwealth? How does our work gain significance and relevance together with others? How is it tied to larger public purposes and broader intellectual horizons? What, ultimately, are our roles, responsibilities and obligations as active and productive citizens in a democracy?

Former accolades for Aeschbacher were the University-level Scholar-in-Residence for Public Scholarship from 2009 to 2011 and a 2007 National Education Honor Award from the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA) and the American Institute of Architects (AIA) for a project titled "Design and Democracy." His "Idealab 01: The Secret Life of Public Spaces" project, done collaboratively with Marcus Shaffer, won a national Creative Achievement award from the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA), in 2013.

More information is online at the Schreyer Honors College Distinguished Honors Faculty Program website:


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Flora Eyster Newburgh

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Last Updated January 09, 2015