Students and faculty look forward to new College of Design
Beginning July 1, the School of Architecture and Allied Arts will be renamed as the College of Design.
The College of Design is being organized into three schools and one separate department: School of Architecture and Environment; School of Planning, Public Policy, and Management; School of Art and Design; and the History of Art and Architecture department.
The discussion about whether to change the name and reorganize the School of AAA has been going on for several years, said AAA Dean Christoph Lindner, but the process didn’t begin until he became dean this year. According to him, most of the AAA community is excited about this change.
“We want to continue to be a highly creative, highly innovative community and what that means is a willingness to adapt change and evolve over time and so what we experience with the College of Design is sort of the latest moment of the evolution of our community,” he said.
Each school will be run by a new position at UO, a Head of School, Lindner said. He has already taken nominations from faculty for this position at each school.
Lindner said he offered the separate history department to be under a school, but the faculty requested to be independent because they are connected with all the schools and did not want to distance themselves from any of them.
The School of Architecture and Environment will include architecture, interior architecture, landscape architecture, and historic preservation. The new structure will help the new school have more collaboration between the different programs in architecture as well as between both undergraduate and graduate levels, said Architecture Department Head Judith Sheine.
“The new School will be able to build on the Department of Architecture’s reputation as a national leader in sustainable design and expand its breadth to new, closely related areas,” she said.
Kelly Schoenborn, a sophomore architecture major and interior architecture minor, is glad that there will be more separation between the various programs in AAA.
“I think for architecture majors, it’s not a huge change for us because before it was Architecture and Allied Arts and so I think we had a really big part in the school, but I think it’s a good change for all of the other majors that are part of the school,” she said.
The Department Head for PPPM, Rich Margerum, is looking forward to the department becoming a school. Margerum hopes to focus on expanding research and graduate education, specifically by adding a PPPM doctorate program.
“This is something that we’ve been advocating for [for] a long time, so we’re all very positive about this change, and we’re looking forward to it,” he said.
Margerum thinks that the new structure will fit and brand PPPM better because he does not feel that the field PPPM fell under the title of allied arts well.
Lindner is looking forward to how the College of Design will be branded with the new name but knows that a positive reputation for a college is more than the title.
“Value and meaning are not going to come from a bunch of trendy slogans and cool logos – though we do hope to have those things,” Lindner said. “It is going to come from the quality of the work that we do, the quality of our program.”
Follow Emma Henderson on Twitter @henderemma .
**A previous version of this story had misspelled the name of Christoph Lindner. The story has been updated with the correct spelling.
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