FOR REDUCED PRICE apply by Feb 9, 2018
Price goes up after Feb. 9

California State Polytechnic University Pomona
College of Environmental Design
Architecture, Landscape Architecture, Urban & Regional Planning

Professor Irma Ramirez,
Professor Courtney Knapp,
Professor Andy Wilcox,

Summer 2018
June 27 - July 31, 2018

application deadline and cost: 
$5,500 all-inclusive w/early bird travel award if you apply by February 9 
(early bird only for first 8 applicants from each department (ARC, URP, LA)

Cost goes up to $8,300 if you apply between February 9-to April 1

Study collaboratively with students and faculty from the departments of Architecture, Landscape Architecture, Urban & Regional Planning.

This is an intense travel and study experience focused on an interdisciplinary collaboration between the departments of Architecture, Landscape Architecture and Urban & Regional Planning. The program includes 3.5 weeks in China + 9 days in Japan focusing on the key cities of Beijing, Shanghai and Tokyo. 

Live in North China University of Technology and work with Chinese faculty and students in this award winning program led by Cal Poly Pomona faculty.  See some of the largest and most populated cities in the world. Experience a political ideal in a communist country with the second largest economy in the world. Only in China can you experience the contrasts and controversies of a country rapidly changing as it seeks to balance modernity and tradition. 

Experience Japan, one of the most technologically advanced countries in the world. Study the Architecture of world renowned architect, Tadao Ando; the intricacies of Japan's extensive and advanced transportation and urban systems; and the beauty of its nature and elegant Japanese gardens.

We also welcome non Cal Poly Pomona students. 
Please inquire: Professor Irma Ramirez at

Faculty traveling with the group this year:
Professor Irma E. Ramirez (ARC),
Assistant Professor Courtney E. Knapp (URP),

1. Print application to fill out, and attach 2 Official Passport photos: 

2.Turn in application to either of these offices:
Architecture Department Office, 7-210
Landscape Architecture Department Office, 7-222
Urban Planning Department Office,  7-224

Or Turn in directly to Professor Irma Ramirez,
or Professor Courtney Knapp,

3. After you submit your application, you will receive notification via email of your acceptance o the program, whether you will receive a travel grant, and information on how to make the $500 deposit to secure your spot. 
Deposits are non-refundable unless the program is cancelled.

$5,500 approx. if apply by Feb. 9th for early-bird travel award
$8,332 if applying after Feb. 9th

$5,970 approx. if apply by Feb. 9th for early-bird travel award
$8,770 if applying after Feb. 9th

cost includes:
  • Lodging in dormitory facilities living on campus at North China University of Technology in Beijing in a two-person dormitory room; hotel stays while on China tours; shared housing accommodations in Japan.
  • 80% of meals covered at on-campus cafeterias and on restaurants during travels. 
  • Trips/tours admissions entry tickets. 
  • Bus transportation to scheduled sites/tours and overnight trains to multi-day tours.
  • Japan Rail Pass
  • Travel Insurance
  • Chinese Visa
  • Tuition (9 units tuition)
  • Roundtrip Los Angeles-Beijing-Tokyo-Los Angeles (aprox. $1600)
-Students may apply after Feb. 9, 2018 but will not receive the travel award. 
-You should budget additional funds for your own recreational/entertainment activities like eating out and any activities on your days off. Students have reported that they have spent anywhere from $500-$1000. This is all depends on your own taste and spending habits.

Travel awards mentioned above ARE NOT RELATED to the FINANCIAL AID OFFICE. These are managed by Prof. Irma Ramirez (ARC). These are exclusively this program and are not based on financial need. Info:

Note on Air ticket: You will pay for your air ticket directly to the designated group travel agent and you will then submit your receipt to us for reimbursement.


The travel award mentioned above is not related to financial aid.
For financial aid from the Financial Aid office, contact Financial Aid counselor as soon as possible to determine your financial aid eligibility. 

Coleen Pila
Financial Aid Counselor

Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships
Phone: (909) 869-4671


9 units total

1. Urban Design Studio and Lecture (3-unit lab and 2 unit lecture)
  • Architecture Undergrads: Credit for one topic studio that may be applied as ARC 401/L, or ARC 402/L, or ARC 405/L. If you are a 4th year, this program will put you ahead and will allow you to focus on senior project during your 5th year. 
  • Architecture Grads: Credit is for an undergraduate studio. You may request your ARC Grad advisor to consider letting you use this an ARC professional elective if you need it.  Check with your Grad advisor. Otherwise only the units will count and may be used to help you with your GPA.
  • URP Undergrads: Credit for URP 400, 498, 498L. Petition upon return.
  • URP Grads: May satisfy URP 641 and URP 642. Must check first with Professor Courtney Knapp for requirements. 
  • Landscape Architecture Students: Successful completion of the program with a grade of B or better in all courses can be used for credit towards Asian Gardens History, Senior Seminar, Senior Project, Directed Electives, and is a basis to petition an upper Division Topic Studio by portfolio review. Consult Professor Andy Wilcox. 
2. Chinese Architecture, Landscape and Planning Practices - 4 units of 499 Upper Division Elective

  • 2.0 minimum gpa. Preference given to higher gpas
  • Architecture Students: Undergraduates currently in 3rd or 4th year may apply. Graduate students currently in their 1st, 2nd, or 3 year of studies may apply. 
  • Landscape Architecture Students: Open to all years. Consult with Professor Andy Wilcox,
  • URP Students:  Open to all URP Grads, Students in 3rd and 4th year have priority.

Tadao Ando, Naoshima Japan

Shibuya Crossing - Tokyo Japan

China is a setting of social, cultural, political, and economic extremes. The country’s delicate and fragile urban structure has the potential to thrive in its world influence or to break a key balance between people and government, history and tradition, nature and progress, and economic growth and market collapse. The ENV China program is structured to give students a vision of themselves as key players and contributors to the solutions that will shape our world in a time of critical transnational ties and challenges.

Classroom Pedagogy and the Planning and Design Process
The collaborative process is explored though an intensive and demanding classroom/travel experience that begins at home at Calpoly Pomona prior to departure and continues through the program, and post program completion.

Cultural preparation is performed through pre-trip research on Chinese history, culture and planning practices, and interdisciplinary team-building exercises. Reflection methods during the program rely on individual expressions through graphic and verbal “sketches” on journals/sketchbooks created on-site during extensive China travels, and the development of project blogs.

The project topics are explored through site analysis projects conducted in collaboration with Chinese partners to perform date acquisition and extensive sidewalk surveying. Students lead a citizen participation component by developing surveys, interviewing community residents, and inviting community to become civically engaged citizens. In the classroom, students work in multidisciplinary teams that immerse themselves into an intensive and invigorating process of great visions, compromise, and deep ethical reflections. Guest speakers and site visits expose students to the social, political, legal, and economic contexts that shape the design and development of buildings and urban settings in China.

Resources, Collaborators and Partnerships of the program consist of Chinese faculty and students, government agencies and local planning and architectural firms. The collaboration with North China University of Technology facilitates contact local advocacy groups that lead to recorded interviews with activist preservation planners.

Among the companies that have opened their doors to our program are global companies like ARUP construction and AECOM (firm with departments of urban design, architecture, landscape architecture, and engineering), and Zaha Hadid Architects. Other agencies sharing their expertise with us are the Beijing Department of Urban Planning, the American Planning Association in Shanghai, The China Academy of Urban Planning and Design; and the Los Angeles Times Beijing Bureau correspondent David Pierson among others.

Results and Program Honors
This interdisciplinary experience exposes students to non-western canons of cultural, professional, and academic traditions. The program encourages students to become socially responsible professionals as they work on real-world design projects in a foreign context. These are mutually beneficial encounters as parties share ideas about the roles of architects, landscape architects, and planners in the west and the newly developing east. In addition, since our program inception, North China University of Technology has started an urban studies program stemming from lessons of our collaboration and with Calpoly faculty as advisors. For the students, lessons learned and evidence of success is displayed by the comprehensive nature of the final report, student reflection papers, and distinguished recognition of regional and state awards at home by the American Planning Association Los Angeles Chapter and California Chapter.

The result of the class project is serving our local partners to dialogue with city officials on out-of-the-box thinking. Since our collaboration, the Fayuan Temple hutong area that was slated for demolition is currently under further review and demolition plans have been halted.

Program Honors
 Environmental Design Research Association
June 2012

American Institute of Certified Planners
February 2012

American Planning Association California State Award
August 2011

American Planning Association Los Angeles Section
June 2011