Program in Environmental Design

University of Colorado Boulder

ENVD Ambassador Program

ENVD ambassadors are students that serve as liaisons between prospective students, parents, and the university, as well as promote the Program in Environmental Design and provide connections between prospective and current ENVD students, faculty, alumni and donors through informational and outreach events.

What Does an Ambassador Do?

  • General Admission Tours of the Environmental Design Building
  • Assist with CU Student for a Day every Friday
  • Assist with Summer, Fall, and Winter Orientations
  • Attend Alumni & Donor Events
  • Help with Fall and Spring Graduation & Commencement
  • Facilitate CU Admitted Student Day
  • Other monthly social ENVD events

Meet our Ambassadors:


Hannah Bennet-Haughey

Home Town: I grew up in Colorado Springs with my very large family and I had never moved until I made my decision to pack up and leave for Boulder, and I am so happy that I made the move.

Year: Junior

Emphasis: Architecture

Why ENVD: Even though I didn’t have far to go to get from home to college, I still felt incredibly homesick, and wasn’t sure that I made the right decision. However, once I realized how incredible ENVD is and how amazing all of the people and my friends in the program are, I understood that this is what I wanted to do with the rest of my life, and I want to be there to help you out too!

Best Part of ENVD: I love being involved in this program more than anything.

ENVD Involvements: I am the Environmental Design Peer Mentor Student Coordinator as well as the Environmental Design Student Government President.

Future Plans: My future goal is to work for the LEGO Company, based out of the US or out of Copenhagen.


Karen Ruszkowski

Hometown: Denver, Colorado

Year: Junior

Emphasis: Architecture

Why ENVD: Environmentalism is becoming an ever heated topic the world over.  I feel architects need to be more conscious of the buildings they create; but not just the buildings but also the land the buildings sit on as well as its surroundings. Through ENVD I am gaining and learning the knowledge to recognize these problems and hope to build more sustainable and better for the world.

Best Part of ENVD: The best part of ENVD is the rounded knowledge I am gaining.  I am learning not only what applies to architecture but also to landscape and planning.

ENVD Involvements: I am an ENVD Ambassador as well as the AIAS Junior Representative.

Future Plans: My goal is to go straight into grad school after I graduate ENVD.


Kyle Kapaun

Home Town: Parker, Colorado

Year: Junior

Emphasis: Architecture

ENVD Involvements: Student Ambassador, Peer Mentor, AIAS Marketer

Future Plans: I am planning on moving on to graduate school after I graduate from CU and eventually getting my license. I am really interested in hospital design and created spaces for people to heal with nature. I am also very interested in getting my degree in Urban and regional planning as well. I hope to be able to start a project and doing everything involved in it.

Why ENVD: Being an architect has always been the dream since I was a little kid. I first toured CU with my sister in 2008 and fell in love. I knew that CU was where I wanted to go to school and focused on getting here. I discovered ENVD and absolutely fell in love. The idea learning multiple disciplines and working with so many great people in class every day sounded amazing, and it is. I have loved learning everything from the ground up in this program. Learning each part of design has been really interesting starting with a smaller scale and moving us very interesting and has helped me learn tremendously.

Best Part of ENVD: The best part of ENVD is studio. I absolutely love coming to class and working on my projects with my teachers one on one, and working with my classmates as well. I love the different parts of the program and learning different curriculums every semester.


Kyra Traxler

Home Town: Boulder CO

Year: Junior

Emphasis: Design Studies

Why ENVD: I choose the ENVD program because I love design, but as a senior in high school I did not know if I wanted to study architecture or another form of design. After watching my older brother go through the program, I decided that ENVD was a perfect fit since it allowed for tracks in multiple design disciplines

Best Part of ENVD: In addition to having flexibility in what to study, my favorite part of the ENVD program is the people. I have met my best friends in this program, and their support and distractions and help and kindness are more than I could have imagined

ENVD Involvements: Lead Student Ambassador, Peer Mentor

Future Plans: I would like to design light fixtures as well as design the lighting schemes for buildings. Additionally, I hope to have to opportunity to travel, both within the states and internationally.


Lauren Tatusko

Home Town: Boulder, Colorado

Year: Senior

Emphasis: Architecture

Why ENVD: Growing up in Boulder, I always wanted to be a Buff. I have been attending Colorado football games since I can remember. However once discovering a passion for Architecture, I visited schools all over the country to see what else there was to offer. I found the Environmental Design Program offered me design studios from day one and a diverse background in all areas relating to design. I loved the idea of learning more than just architecture. Staying close to home and continuing family traditions wasn't a bad thing either. Coming to school here has been the best decision I’ve made!

Best part of ENVD: The Environmental Design Program is smaller than most on campus. The size gives each student an opportunity to mingle with one another and the faculty. I have built great personal relationships with many faculty and students within this program which has benefited me both personally and professionally. Most of my best friends here at the University of Colorado come from within the program and they are some of the best people I’ve met here!

ENVD Involvements: Student Ambassador, Peer Mentor, SALA Personal Relations Officer

Future Plans: I will be graduating in May with a Bachelor of Environmental Design and a Minor in Business. I plan to backpack Europe for a few months of the summer, experiencing the beautiful architecture I have discovered in all my history classes. I hope to continue working with the firm I am currently Interning with and build my portfolio in the year following graduation. Within a year or two from graduating from The University of Colorado I plan to attend graduate school and pursue becoming a licensed Architect.


Nicole Micalizzi

Home Town: San Clemente, Ca

Year: Senior

Emphasis: Architecture

ENVD Involvements: Student Ambassador

Future Plans: I hope to work as an architect brining energy saving practices into my projects. I am Interested in almost everything from mixed-use, hospitality, commercial, residential and even planning. The goal one day is to become a developer so I can do it all.

Why ENVD: I have known I wanted to be an architect since 6th grade, so it was all about finding the right program. After looking at countless schools across the country, CU stood out as the obvious place to start my design career. The beautiful campus and mountain scenery provides a great working environment to inspire creativity. ENVD’s four year program and different types of design allows me to become a well rounded designer. The projects have provided me a better understanding for the working world.

Best Part of ENVD: Not writing essays! ENVD curriculum is all about growing our design ability and very specialized to our interests. It is fun, hands on and a great way to get experience.


Shakari McGill

Home Town: Colorado Springs

Year: Junior

Emphasis: Architecture

Why ENVD: I chose ENVD because it allowed me to explore my childlike fascination of how things work. In this program I’ve been allotted the opportunity to indulge in my creativity and let it flourish. I could say that of any other major I’ve been a part of and cannot wait to apply these skills to my career.

Best Part of ENVD: The best part of ENVD is the iterative design process. Through constructive feedback you get the opportunity to take a good idea and make it great.

ENVD Involvements: I am a Peer Mentor, a DWB Scholarship participant, and an ENVD Ambassador.

Future Plans: I plan to become a licensed architect and open my own firm; it will specialize it custom houses and creative solutions for the public housing crisis.