Mark Santrach, an architecture major from St. Paul, Minnesota, has been named valedictorian of the 2014 University of Notre Dame graduating class and will present the valedictory address during the University Commencement Ceremony on May 18 (Sunday) at Notre Dame Stadium.
Santrach, who has achieved Dean’s List honors each semester while at Notre Dame, has earned a 3.993 cumulative grade point average.
A member of Tau Sigma Delta Architecture Honor Society, he will be published in “Hybrid Drawing Techniques: Design Process and Presentation” by Gilbert Gorski, the James A. and Louise F. Nolen associate professor in architecture, and was published in the University’s School of Architecture student magazine, Acroterion.
During his Notre Dame career, Santrach spent eight months in the University’s Rome Studies program immersed in Italian architecture and urbanism focusing on Renaissance design and the traditional city. He also traveled to Rio de Janeiro for a summer session study abroad experience.
His undergraduate experience also included a visit to Santa Rosa Beach, Florida, as part of a student group working with the Historic Point Washington Association to create a pattern book to guide development and preserve the character of the town.
As a design intern during the winter of 2014, he created illustrative and didactic diagrams showing the missing housing types in post-World War II construction to persuade urban planners to rethink current zoning codes.
While at Notre Dame, Santrach performed as a member of the University’s a cappella singing group, Unchained Melodies; participated inBengal Bouts; served as a tutor at the South Bend Center for the Homeless; and was a cantor for Stanford Hall Masses.
After graduation, he plans to work as an architectural assistant at Porphyrios Associates, a classical and traditional architecture and urbanism firm based in London, where he hopes to engage at all stages of design from schematic design to design development and construction documentation.
The Commencement invocation will be offered by Lisa Taylor, a double major in political science and peace studies from Byron Center, Michigan, who currently has a 3.990 grade point average.