The Building Enclosure Sustainability Symposium (BESS) was initiated in 2009 through a partnership of the Department of Architecture at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, and Simpson Gumpertz & Heger Inc., an engineering firm specializing in structures and building enclosures. The symposium is designed to bring together professionals from academia, architecture, engineering and construction, as well as students, to discuss state-of-the-art sustainable building enclosure design. By focusing on practical application, we hope that professional and student attendees will leave with an increased ability to put sustainable enclosures into practice.Architect and engineer William Shepphird introduced the two organizations due to their mutual interests. The aim of the symposium aligns closely with the Cal Poly Department of Architecture’s focus on the integration of building technology into design, and their nationally recognized specialization in sustainable design. Simpson Gumpertz & Heger Inc. is a national leader in the engineering and design of sustainable building enclosures. Both organizations recognize that state-of-the-art work is being done in both academia and industry, and that the building profession is moving in the direction of interdisciplinary integrated practice. The symposium is intended to provide an opportunity for faculty and students to interact with a wide variety of architecture, engineering, and construction professionals, allowing the participants to expand their knowledge of current technologies, and, we hope, to form mutually beneficial partnerships.