Architecture senior wins national contest

By Jennifer Miles

Students might have seen him on the court during last week’s basketball game against Ole Miss.

But Danny Ruberg does not play basketball. He was recognized by President Lee Todd and his wife, Patsy, for winning the 2007 American Institute of Architecture Students’ Pediatric Outpatient Rehabilitation Center Design Competition.

He was one of 80 people nationally to enter the contest to design a pediatric center for kids who were going through rehabilitation. Ruberg, an architecture senior in UK’s four-year architecture program, said he tried to make the center as comfortable as possible for children.

“I tried to design it so that for a little while they could forget that they were receiving treatment,” he said.

The competitors were required to use products from Kawneer Company Inc., which sponsored the contest with the American Institute of Architecture Students.

Ruberg said his design is unique because it saves a significant amount of energy by integrating light-weight panels, called Panelite, into the company’s thermal window systems.

“The tubular honeycomb core of Panelite offers excellent shading performance and provides an aesthetic orange color,” he said. “It also achieves a lower solar heat gain coefficient.”

Ruberg’s faculty adviser, Melody Farris Jackson, said Ruberg worked extremely hard on the design, which was an independent study project during fall semester.

Ruberg found out about the contest through his role as president of the UK chapter of AIAS, and Jackson said he was the only UK student to enter.

He won $2,500 for his design, which he plans to save. UK’s AIAS chapter will also receive a $500 grant.

It was the first design contest Ruberg had entered, he said. He has also entered a student memorial design competition at UK but has not yet heard the results.

Ruberg currently interns at James N. Gray Company, a design-build company based in Lexington. After graduation he plans to take a year or two off and work at an architecture firm before going to graduate school.