Floor plan – CHS Students Abigail Hickey, senior; Annaleisa Stanberry, junior; and Kamon Irwin, senior, look over Abigail’s floor plan.
CHS Students Design Affordable Homes For Habitat For Humanity, Putnam County School System provides career path opportunities for students to explore
Cookeville – “Affordable homes where people can realize the dream of being a homeowner” is the project three Cookeville High School (CHS) students took on in the brand new Civil Engineering and Architectural class led by instructor Dave Powell.
“This is the first year CHS has offered the Civil Engineering and Architectural class. It falls under Project Lead the Way (PLTW) the Putnam County School System has been a part of for many years. It provides learning experiences, hands-on STEM courses for K 12 students, and professional development for teachers,” said Powell. “Habitat for Humanity is part of the PLTW curriculum, and students were asked to design homes for them. I am proud of all the students for taking on a brand new class offering. They impressed me with their quality projects and professionalism.”
Pictured, front row, from l. to r.: Allison Smith, Abigail Hickey, Annaleisa Stanberry and Kamon Irwin. Back row, from l. to r.: Mike Mears, Mike Porten, Kim Cravens, Dave Powell and Max Petett.
When given the project opportunity to design an affordable house, CHS Students Abigail Hickey, senior; Annaleisa Stanberry, junior; and Kamon Irwin, senior, chose to design homes for Upper Cumberland Habitat for Humanity. They researched the need for affordable homes and what involves building homes in a cost-effective manner.
The three student designers had to look for design layout, functions and material choices and strive to create a home with adaptable features that wouldn’t age out the home quickly.
“We worked on this project all fall semester,” said Kamon Irwin.
“This project required a lot of research, and it was crucial,” said Abigail Hickey. “I plan to pursue architecture after high school. This class ultimately prepared me on how to conduct research. From there, it was knowing the Habitat guidelines. You constantly had to refer back to the guidelines to ensure you knew what to do.”
Habitat For Humanity has guidelines for constructing a home, and students had to research those and collect a client survey to see the family’s needs. Site plans, sketches of plans for electricity, plumbing, walls, windows, water supply, wastewater and stormwater runoff calculations had to all be thought through and presented along with 3D renderings.
“You found yourself going back to the guidelines constantly to make sure you developed the project correctly,” said Annaleisa Stanberry. “As I found myself in the design portion, I thought about my house and what I would do to it if I could make changes. To see where we started, because looking at the syllabus for this project for the first time was a lot, but step-by-step, you began to see what you can accomplish.”
Upper Cumberland Habitat For Humanity presented certificates to the three students for their outstanding projects.
“It was so impressive to see the student’s project portfolios. A lot of hard work went into this and they executed it beautifully for high school students,” said Allison Smith, Director of Development for Upper Cumberland Habitat For Humanity. “Myself, Interim Director Mike Porten and Director of Construction Mike Mears were thrilled to recognize these students and speak with Mr. Powell’s class about Habitat’s mission.”
Smith plans to send Irwin’s, Stanberry’s and Hickey’s projects to the state Habitat for Humanity to be viewed and maybe one day used and developed.
“It was cool to work on this project. To actually design a house that someone can live in one day is cool,” said Irwin.
Photos courtesy of PCSS.