STEM Shoutout: Kuppu Iyengar

UNM architecture professor honored with Regents’ Professorship

Professor of Architecture Kuppaswamy Iyengar has earned the prestigious regents’ professorship title effective 2019 – 2021.


The School of Architecture and Planning (SA+P) dean and leadership team awarded Iyengar the title; Iyengar in 2015 received the regents’ lectureship. Together they choose a regents’ professor and regents’ lecturer from a pool of self-nominated individuals every three years. 


“To receive an honor like this from a tier one university is enormous credit. I cherish it,” Iyengar said.


Iyengar’s research interests pertain to energy efficiency and sustainability as it applies to architecture and planning. Since 1973, this interest has offered Iyengar opportunities to develop curriculum, course materials, and training in energy efficiency in 45 locations in eight countries, for utilities, and commercial and institutional customers, he said.


“Climate change and greenhouse gas emissions are the most critical problems facing the world causing enormous upheavals all over the world. My work in sustainability and energy efficiency is expected to train future generations to address the current sustainable issues,” Iyengar said.


Iyengar joined the University of New Mexico in fall 2000 and has taught a variety of courses at the UNM School of Architecture and Planning including Architectural Structures, Sustainability, Building Systems and Building Design Studios, and Energy Simulation. Iyengar is solely responsible for the two required undergraduate and graduate Architectural Structures courses. In addition, he has been a chair or member of thesis committees for 34 master’s thesis projects. In 2011, Iyengar was voted Students Choice Faculty Member of the Year.


“Teaching is an extraordinary responsibility. My pedagogical approach is defined by lending support to students as they make observations and validate their structural architectural decisions through analytical methods. One can learn from nature that it follows and responds to different forces and needs, yet creates structural forms that are marvels of creation. Each day I attempt to impart this profound respect for nature to my students,” Iyengar said.


Iyengar is also the author of a book, Sustainable Architectural Design- an Overview’ published in 2015.  “The book is a guide to a sustainable design process that moves from theory, to site and energy use, to building systems, and finally to evaluation and case studies, so one can integrate design and technology for effective sustainable building,” Iyengar said.