Penn State senior wins PGAV Destinations scholarship

By | July 30, 2014

Imaginative waterpark design lands winner in Busch Gardens Williamsburg
PGAVST. LOUIS, Mo. – Senior Andrew Reiff of Penn State’s School of Visual Arts is 2014’s winner of PGAV Destinations’ Spot Experiential Scholarship.

The first-of-its-kind scholarship was launched in early spring 2013 and challenged college students from US universities to design a destination based upon one of seven unique environmental concepts, from a solar-powered research station in the Antarctic to a new home for Anheuser-Busch’s Clydesdales.

Andrew’s submission, amongst numerous entries from across the country, envisioned an immersive waterpark called “Appalachian Creeks.” In his narrative, Andrew described a town founded by visionaries to bring fresh water to those without access, and which was eventually converted into an exciting and engaging attraction. His multiple renderings depicted individual rides, entire park lay-outs, and a sophisticated demonstration of the kind of thinking that goes into exceptional destination design. His focus was bridging the gap between spectators and the participating riders.

“Andrew went above and beyond just envisioning a wild water ride,” said Ned Diestelkamp, PGAV VP and head of the scholarship review panel. “He showed a deep level of thinking about the guest experience from all angles, considered park signage, based it on creative storytelling, and demonstrated really impressive technical sophistication.”

For being awarded the Experiential Scholarship, Andrew has chosen an all-expenses paid trip for him and his family to visit PGAV Destinations-designed Busch Gardens Williamsburg. Scholarship recipients have the choice of visiting PGAV-designed Discovery Cove, Space Shuttle Atlantis, Table Rock at Niagara Falls, Busch Gardens Williamsburg, or the Georgia Aquarium.

Andrew will be graduating from Penn State School of Visual Arts in May 2015 with a Bachelor of Design in Interdisciplinary Digital Studio. A Dean’s List scholar and previous teammate of Cru and Walt Disney World, Andrew is a member of the TEA, IAAPA, and is a self-proclaimed theme park enthusiast, most notably a roller coaster junkie. He loves video games like Kirby and TV series like Doctor Who, and is looking to begin his career in the themed entertainment industry as a 3D visualization artist after graduation.

“It’s such an honor to be the scholarship recipient this year!” said Andrew. “As an artist and as a future creative individual in the themed entertainment industry, I’m so honored and I appreciate it so much!”

PGAV Destinations is a global leader in the planning and design of unique destinations. Now in its fifth decade, the practice has evolved to become the ideal destination-consulting partner, skilled at developing growth-oriented master plans and translating those plans into successful projects. No other firm offers such an integrated approach to destination planning.
PGAV’s key clients include industry leaders such as Delaware North Companies, SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment, the Biltmore Companies, Bass Pro Shops, Ameristar Casinos, Universal Studios, The Gettysburg Foundation, the St. Louis Zoo, and many others. Recent assignments include planning and design at many of the world’s “must see” destinations, including the Grand Canyon, Biltmore Estate, Space Shuttle Atlantis, Chimelong Ocean Kingdom, the Georgia Aquarium, the Hoover Dam, and SeaWorld Adventure Parks.