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Beginning April 17, the CAC Box Office and Design Store are open Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 10am–4pm. Stay tuned for more updates.

The CAC is proud to offer “The American Skyscraper: Transforming Chicago and the Nation,” a workshop for teachers in summer 2021, with support from the National Endowment for the Humanities’ Landmarks of American History and Culture.

The skyscraper, more than any other building type, gives American cities their distinctive character. During this week-long workshop offered twice (July 11–17, 2021 and again July 25–31), participants will investigate the skyscraper as a physical and cultural construct. By examining tall buildings in Chicago—home to some of the world’s earliest skyscrapers—the workshop will explore how to use all buildings as primary-source teaching tools.

Skyscrapers will serve as a lens for studying innovation, urbanization, segregation, labor, gender and civic identity. We will address such questions as: How did the rise of the skyscraper stimulate and reflect changes in American life? and What do these developments indicate about the future of countries building skyscrapers in large numbers today?

In support of public health, all sessions will be webcast and remotely accessible. Using a variety of online learning platforms, project educators will lead participants virtually through the Chicago Architecture Center’s exhibition spaces, as well as through downtown Chicago and several neighborhoods. The workshop will also provide opportunities for participants to take screen breaks to explore their own communities, through a series of interactive content intended to relate Chicago-specific examples to cities and towns located throughout the United States.

Each session will accommodate up to 36 educators in grades 3–12 from across the country. Participants will each receive a $1,300 NEH stipend.

The application period for both sessions is now open. Please submit your materials no later than Monday, March 1, 2021 to be eligible for consideration.

Applicants who submitted materials for the summer 2020 workshop (canceled due to COVID-19) who would like to re-submit for 2021 should email to notify us of their continued interest. Please include “Landmarks Applicant 2020” in the subject line of your email.


Nicole Kowrach, NEH Project Co-Director, Vice President of Education and Audience Engagement
Adam Rubin, NEH Project Co-Director, Director of Interpretation


Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this workshop do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities.