Pipelinelogobackdrop Project Pipeline

Project Pipeline


Our mission is to empower young people to affect change in their community through design. Using the city as the classroom and connecting young people to real-world architects and planners, we foster the next generation of design professionals, civic leaders, and changemakers.  We advocate for increased inclusiveness, diversity, fellowship, equity, and excellence in design. 


Project Pipeline was born at the 2002 NOMA conference in Fort Lauderdale. Then-president Paul Taylor asked Drake Dillard and David Kirk to research and establish a plan for the camp that would introduce minority students with a focus on black students to architecture with the ultimate goal of creating more licensed black architects.  The first camp was held in 2006 in Cincinnati by the South West Ohio NOMA chapter. Since then dozens have camps have been held in more than twenty cities. In 2012 a formalized curriculum was implemented nationally. 

How We Do It 

We guide students through all stages of design using provoking and fun exercises. Students investigate through drawing and model building, analyze through diagramming and research, and engage through interviews and site visits. By the program’s conclusion, students present a fully realized project that addresses an issue in their city. 

Our Impact 

Project Pipeline serves a diverse population of students, all of whom are underrepresented in the design field. Our program better prepares students for college and life beyond. Through Project Pipeline, young people grasp the significance of architecture in their daily lives, as well as the broader cultural, social, and historical implications. They develop skills and tools to contribute to their community critically and constructively. Project Pipeline has served more than 10,000 students over the last decade. 

Summer Camps 

Pipeline National Camp

NOMA National Virtual Summer Camp August 10-17, 2020  

NOMA’s local summer camps provide 6th-12th grade students of color with the opportunity to learn the fundamentals of architecture and design. Students that participate in the camps work closely with architects and designers to create the designs they would like to see in their communities. Not only do students create designs, but they are also connected with mentors in the architecture field to help guide their interests. For many students, Project Pipeline is their first introduction to the design world. 

Due to COVID-19 all Project Pipeline summer camps have moved to virtual space to ensure the safety of students and volunteers. Summer 2020 will be the first summer that we are not able to be hands-on with our participants. We hope the social distancing measures will enable students to interact with us from the comfort of their homes. NOMA’s Project Pipeline team has created a new online 8-day day camp supported by a curriculum that gives students the skills that they would receive in person. 

With Project Pipelines’ recent switch to a virtual platform, our national leaders have decided to host a virtual 8-day camp that is accessible to children from all over the United States. The national camp fee is $35 for the full 7-day experience beginning August 10-17, 2020. 

National NOMA Day Camp Sample Schedule 2020
All Live learning camp days are from 10 am-3 pm ET / 9 am-2 pm CT

Day 01 – Camp Introduction + Block Scale Design

Live Learning

Live explanation of camp goals and daily curriculum

Day 02 – Block Scale

Workday – Content from Day 02 available to review/rewatch

Day 03 – Building Scale

Live Learning

Live explanation of camp goals and daily curriculum

Day 04-Building Scale

Work day-Content from Day 04 available to review/rewatch

Day 05-Building Scale

Live Learning

Live explanation of camp goals and daily curriculum

Day 06 – Building Scale

Workday – Content from Day 06 available to review/rewatch

Day 08 – Celebration

Live celebration of camp effort and presentations

2020 Project Pipeline Co-Chairs:

Bryan C. Lee, Jr. Is founder/director of Colloqate Design, a nonprofit architecture and urban design practice. Lee has spent 12 years working as an architect, design justice advocate, and organizer with a focus on spatial justice in the built environment. He is the founding organizer of the Design Justice Platform and organized the Design As Protest National day of Action. Led two award-winning architecture and design programs for high school students through the Arts Council of New Orleans (local) and the National Organization of Minority Architects (national), respectively. Lee was named one of 2018 Fast Company Most Creative People in Business. 2019 Architectural League Emerging Voices and a 2019 USC Civic Media Research Fellow.

Richie Hands is an associate architect at Lamar Johnson Collaborative with a multidisciplinary background in design, having worked on both interiors and exterior projects all across the globe. He is incredibly passionate about mentoring having run multiple mentorship/internship programs, engaging with middle school students through grad school via NOMA Project Pipeline, ACE Mentorship Program, and formerly the Gensler North Central Region Internship Program. He was recently selected to be apart of AIA Chicago’s Bridge Mentorship program and continues to work with expanding the diversity of the architectural profession.


Other NOMA Project Pipeline Camps 2020 

Some cities will be hosting their own virtual programs, in addition to the national camps. Please see the list below for details on camp dates and pricing:  

Southern California NOMA

Saturdays, July 11th, 18th, & 25th, $25 registration fee

NOMA Louisiana

Sunday, July 26th- Monday, August 3rd

Illinois NOMA

Monday, August 10th – Monday, August 17th

San Francisco NOMA

Monday, July 27th- Monday, August 3rd, $100 registration fee

North Carolina NOMA

Monday, July 27th- Friday, July 31st

NOMA Cleveland

Monday, July 27th- Friday, July 31st

Dallas/Ft. Worth NOMA

Saturday, August 8th & Saturday, August 15th

NOMA Detroit

Monday, August 9th

Philadelphia NOMA, New Jersey NOMA, New York NOMA – Hosting together

Saturdays, August 15th, 22nd, & 29th, $25 registration fee