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BTN LiveBIG: PSU students impacting New Orleans rebuild

It started as an undergraduate thesis. Now, it may help rebuild New Orleans. In fall 2012, Aaron Wertman was a fifth-year student in Penn State’s Stuckeman School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture. His undergraduate thesis challenged him to identify an issue and solve it with an architectural solution involving a 20,000 square foot building. Wertman studied the Lower Ninth Ward of New Orleans and evaluated how architecture could improve one of the most-damaged areas from 2005’s Hurricane Katrina. Upon starting his Master of Architecture studies at Penn State, Wertman, 24, questioned the extent of his thesis. (Wertman’s master’s thesis is