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College of Architecture, Planning and Design

Chris Manzo

FacStaff NameAssistant Professor
Interior Architecture & Product Design

Curriculum CV

Seaton Hall
Kansas State University
Manhattan, KS 66506
T: (785) 532-5992



Christopher Manzo, AIA, IDEC, LEED AP is a curious designer and facilitative team leader who is passionate about design excellence, drawing, sustainability, and mentoring relationships. Manzo received his B.Arch from Washington University in St. Louis in 1990, and his M.Arch from the University of Oregon in 1995 and has been teaching at the university level since 2001. Currently he teaches at Kansas State University’s Interior Architecture and Product Design program where he works with students at both the introductory and graduate levels. Prior to joining IAPD, Manzo taught at the Sam Fox School of Design at Washington University in St. Louis and at the University of Kentucky’s  College of Design programs. At Washington University, Manzo taught design studio, drawing, and green construction technology for over ten years. At the University of Kentucky, Manzo worked in the architecture, interior design, and historic preservation departments teaching design studio and construction documents. Additionally, he was the Program Director for the education abroad program in Florence, Italy, summer of 2014. Currently, Manzo is guiding a team of undergraduate’s in original research to develop a Net Zero Air Filtration product via the EPA’s P3 competition. Manzo’s students are pushed to excel at design; in 2016, both of his Steelcase NEXT competition student projects were Finalists with Manzo’s fourth year student, Caleb Amundson, wining this national competition (out of 700+ student entries from 66 programs).

Manzo’s scholarly interests are broad. Currently, he is integrating 3D print technology into early stage product prototyping; developing a method of 3D spatial documentation for Renaissance painting; looking at the effectiveness of rubric evaluations in promoting design excellence within grading studio work; and examining the role of building culture with students at full scale. In the Spring 2016, Manzo led his second year students in the building of ‘Tessa’ – a Tiny House for Manhattan Area Habitat for Humanity – using a Design/ Simulate/ Build pedagogical framework.  Manzo has founded drawing groups in St. Louis and Lexington and is an enthusiastic advocate for drawing, both analog and digital, within design thinking and education.

As a practitioner of over twenty years, Manzo has designed and managed over two hundred built projects for his clients ranging in scope from home additions and light commercial renovations, to hospitals and laboratories for F500 companies. Manzo was the Designer and LEED AP for the LEED Gold, Emerson Laboratory in Columbus, Ohio and his built works include a school on a river barrage, a treehouse on the ground, houses that move, and a photography studio in a 1920’s auto showroom. He has spent the past four years founding a startup technology company called kit-case, focused upon smartphone accessory innovation and design (www.kit-case.com).