The 14th edition of “Designing with Natural Stone” will run from September 24 to 30, 2012 in Verona, Italy, in conjunction with Marmomacc, the world’s leading trade show for stone and design. More than 220 architects from all over the U.S. have participated in previous editions of the course. Scholarship applications for this year’s course will be accepted until July 15.

Veronafiere offers this course to help architects learn advanced techniques in the use of marble, granite and other stone materials. It is an ideal way for members of the stone trade to educate architects they work with about stone design.

The program is a unique combination of classroom lectures, guided architectural tours and field trips to local quarries, as well as to natural stone processing facilities. This comprehensive approach enables architects to better understand stone’s full life-cycle — including how marble is quarried, cut, processed, finished, selected for specific jobs and installed, all using the latest technologies and products.

The 2012 edition will include visits to a nearby Rosso Verona quarry and stone processing plant, a case study on stone use in the Canadian Museum of Human Rights, and an architectural tour of Verona. To celebrate its 75th anniversary, Mapei will host the group in Milan for two full days. The Milan program will include visits of Mapei’s plant in Mediglia, its R&D labs in Milan and the City Life project, a residential and business district currently under construction in Milan. City Life was designed by architects Arata Isozaki, Daniel Libeskind, Zaha Hadid and Pier Paolo Maggiora, and it has been recognized for the redevelopment of the historic area originally occupied by Fiera Milano. Mapei’s involvement has included specifying and supplying various construction products that have contributed to the sustainability of this project and assistance with specifications for the stone installation.

Sustainable design (SD) became a principal focus of the course in 2008. Five AIA SD credits will be offered, including case studies of sustainable projects in stone. In addition, the course provides time to explore Marmomacc, with its more than 1,500 exhibitors of stone and stone-related products from around the world.

“Designing with Natural Stone” has been recognized by the AIA as a “Best Practices and Trends” educational program. Comments from last year’s students support this judgment:

“Best program I have attended . . . It was totally relevant. I learned a tremendous amount about how, where and why to use stone in four short days. . . It was a wonderful experience.” — Jared Pierce, Canizaro Cawthon Davis (Jackson, MS)

“The program was well structured and provided excellent case studies and expertise to answer a myriad of questions which occur during the design and construction phases of architecture. It was perfect to see the progression of stone — from quarry to finished product and have the ability to ask questions at each phase. . . The course content was extremely relevant to the design profession. To understand the stone process from the manufacturing side, then translate it to the design side assists in minimizing design flaws.” — Sonya Jury, Burns & McDonnell (Kansas City, MO)

“All lectures were excellent. . . . The entire experience was exceptional; I just wish we had more time.” — Ming Hu, HOK-DC (Rockville, MD)

Participants earn more than 20 AIA/CES learning-unit hours. Most classes also count as HSW credits and five as SD credits. The class is limited to 30 architects, 16 from the U.S., and the others from Canada, the U.K., South Africa, India, Singapore and Hungary.

Scholarships — covering tuition, hotels and meals — are awarded on a competitive basis, based on a candidate’s demonstrated interest in the field, responsibilities within their firm and experience with stone. Participants are responsible for their own transportation to Verona as well as a $480 registration fee. Those interested should fax or e-mail to the address below their curriculum vitae and a cover letter specifying why they wish to take part in the course. The deadline for submitting applications is July 15.

The course is co-sponsored by Stone World magazine and supported by the Marble Institute of America (MIA), which donates a copy of its MIA Dimension Stone Design Manual to all participants.

Please send applications to: Wafa Ghnaim, The Consultants International Group: 1616 H Street NW, Washington, DC 20006; Fax: (202) 393-4655; E-mail: