As millions navigate unemployment, and the economic uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic, housing and housing inequality have surfaced as increasingly urgent issues in Los Angeles and urban cities nationwide. Students from 16 of California’s top architecture and design schools will foreshadow the future of housing at the American Institute of Architects Los Angeles (AIA LA) annual 2×8: Domum Student Exhibition beginning on November 5.

The annual exhibition showcases exemplary student work, celebrates the diversity of architectural philosophy, and encourages conversation around a central theme. This year’s theme reflects on the dialogue surrounding housing in Los Angeles and other urban centers across the country. Students were encouraged to submit innovative solutions that respond to the theme. This year, projects will be integrated into a virtual reality experience which will allow the public to experience the work in a highly immersive way. HMC Architects’ Designing Futures Foundation (DFF) made a donation to support the event as a silver sponsor. With the DFF’s support, AIA LA will provide a total of $30,000 in scholarships to the winning designers.

HMC’s DFF was founded in 2009 as a 501(3)(c) organization designed to deepen the firm’s commitment to giving back. Over the past decade, the DFF has invested more than $1M in its communities locally and globally with a focus on architecture and design, STEM and STEAM education, and sustainability. The foundation recently launched a new HMC Million Meals initiative and donated $100,000 to nonprofits in the Feeding America and Share Our Strength / No Kid Hungry networks to help families and individuals facing food insecurity as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Through HMC’s corporate giving, the DFF scholarship and social innovation grant programs, community partnerships, employee volunteerism, pro bono design services, in-kind donations, and responsible business practices, HMC is building a better world for future generations.

The 2×8 Student Exhibition, which will be held virtually, opens on November 5 and will continue through December 31. To learn more or to register, visit the event’s website.