Supporting Young Scholars

American College of the Building Arts Externs

Recognizing the ever-growing shortage of craftspeople in the historic trades, Classical American Homes Preservation Trust supplements the funding provided to students at the American College of the Building Arts as they fulfill their required summer externships working with experts in their fields: timber framing, plastering, stone carving, historical carpentry, and ironwork, among others.

A list of summer 2023 sponsored externs appears below.

Linnea Carlson, second year, architectural carpentry

Linnea grew up in rural Texas with an interest in history from a young age. While trying to find a professional outlet for her interests, she took an internship at the Manassas National Battlefield where she discovered Historic Preservation and, specifically, the more hands-on portions of the field. Her National Park internship led her to ACBA. Now a second-year student, Linnea externs this summer with the Architect of the Capitol in Washington, DC.

JT Washington, second year, architectural carpentry

JT decided to leave his native California and exchanged coasts to explore architectural carpentry as a student at ACBA. He says it was the riskiest decision of his life, but it has been well worth it. He currently works in custom cabinetry, as he did last summer, when he worked in a shop tucked away in the Berkshires. This summer, he is externing with the Architect of the Capitol.

Margaret “Maggie” Botticelli, second year, plaster

Margaret “Maggie” Botticelli has long held a passion for art, craft, and creative endeavors generally. Maggie is experiencing some of the nation’s most elaborate plasterwork this summer while externing with the Architect of the Capitol’s plasterers at the Library of Congress.

Albert Garone, first year, stone carving

A native Coloradan, Albert spent his early years living in New York and Argentina before returning to Colorado. He has always been interested in building and creating “whether it’s with Legos, wood, or steel.” With a background in welding fabrication and blacksmithing, Albert is now studying Stone Carving at ACBA and is drawn to the statuary side of the craft while also developing an interest in the sculptural elements of architectural masonry. Albert will be externing with the Architect of the Capitol this summer.

Nathaniel Smitherman, second year, classical architecture

Nate Smitherman is a sophomore Classical Architecture student at ACBA. He graduated high school in Maryland where his family currently resides, and has had a passion for architecture, design, art and history from a young age. He will be working for the Architect of the Capitol this summer as an Architectural Aide in the United States Senate Offices.

Mason Lamb, second year, Classical Architecture

Originally from Asheville, NC where his family has deep roots in the region, Mason graduated from Christ School where he volunteered to make digital copies of campus infrastructure blueprints. Currently, he is a sophomore studying Classical Architecture and Design at ACBA. Mason will be externing for the Architect of the Capitol this year.

Vaughan Hall, second year, blacksmithing

A two-time state Champion in football, his junior and senior years in high school, native Charlottean Vaughan Hall is a sophomore blacksmithing student at ACBA. In addition to his interest in athletics (from gymnastics to martial arts), Vaughan has also pursued an interest in art eventually being drawn to early American architecture. He has found blacksmithing to be an excellent way of combining two of “the common themes and enjoyments” of his life: creativity and physicality. Vaughan will be studying under an expert blacksmith in Japan this summer.

Carolyne Chardac, third year, plaster

Fluent in French, decorative plaster student, Carolyne Chardac received the Phi Beta Kappa Academic scholarship last year and is a member of the Preservation Society of Charleston and the Alliance Francaise of Charleston. A junior at ACBA, she has externed with Decorators Supply in Chicago, creating molds and casting large scale ornamental elements. Last summer, she externed with Master Plasterer Philip Gaches throughout England on historic buildings and homes dating to the 16th century, spending an additional week in Italy learning how to create and install decorative Scagliola, a faux stone/ marble made with the use of pigments and gypsum plaster. This summer Carolyne will be traveling to France and externing with Auberlet et Laurent. This company has two showrooms, one in Paris and another in New York, showcasing its collection of decorative plasterwork. At Auberlet and Laurent, she will assist with installations of ornamental plaster, sculpting new designs, casting and running moldings for clients.

River Johnson, second year, architectural carpentry

From Edwardsville, IL, River Johnson is a sophomore studying architectural carpentry at ACBA. This summer he will be externing with the company Wibbeke Denkmalpflege in Geske, Germany. Hoping to hone his skills and learn different architectural carpentry techniques, he will help with the preservation of Neumenster’s City Hall, Heidelberg Castle, and Berlin’s Museum Island.

Tatum Connor, second year, stone carving

Tatum Connor is a sophomore at ACBA studying stone carving. She is excited to learn more about art preservation, particularly in the field of stonework. Tatum plans to use her education and artistic skills to highlight the good in the world, celebrate nature, and call and empower her viewers to change the world. This summer, Tatum will work at Lincoln Cathedral in the UK.

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