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Pratt Institute Celebrates 125th Anniversary

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Pratt Institute, one of the most esteemed architecture schools in the country is celebrating its 125th anniversary. NY1's Jeanine Ramirez filed the following report.

Artwork decorates the campus at Pratt Institute. The visual design school has the largest outdoor sculpture park in the city.

But not only do you find Pratt's art in Brooklyn, for decades, its students have gone on to create some of the country's most iconic images. Among them, the Heisman Memorial Trophy, the Life Magazine logo, the Ford Motor Thunderbird and the Chrysler Building.

"We now receive more applications to Pratt than any other arts school in the country," said Thomas Schutte, the president of the Pratt Institute. "That has to say something. Our freshman class this year has 720 students and we had 6,055 applications."

The school started with just 12 students under the leadership of Charles Pratt back in 1887. There are now dozens of buildings on a 25-acre campus. Banners hang commemorating Pratt's 125th anniversary.

The school offers all kinds of visual arts courses. There's industrial design. Interior design. Fashion design. Architecture.

"I came to Pratt because my grandfather went here and I've always wanted to be an architect for as long as I can remember," said Adelaide Palum, who is majoring in architecture at Pratt.

Two-thirds of Pratt students stay in the city after they graduate. Adam Atkinson, a freshman from Pennsylvania majoring in graphic design, said that's what he plans to do.

"I'd like to stay here forever," he said. "I really love the city and it's someplace I've always wanted to be."

As the school continues to attract and cultivate talent, there are plans to expand the campus in the near future. Officials say they need to create more residence halls, a student center and bike racks.

"We estimate now that 50 percent of our student body bike and we've got the bikes here," Schutte said. "So we are contending continuously with finding imaginative places for students to store their bikes."

Imaginative is an easy task for a place this creative.

On Monday, the Empire State Building will be lit in gold in honor of Pratt's anniversary. There will be a gala held at the Waldorf Astoria, a building designed by a Pratt alumnus.

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