HGA Design Principal Marc L’Italien, FAIA, is a nationally recognized architect with 30 years’ experience providing strategic planning and design expertise for leading arts, community and higher education clients. Here, he talks about how great design enhances the college campus experience.
Kaveh Amirdelfan is a principal specializing in higher education architecture with HGA. His work includes campus master planning to student life, instructional/classroom and science buildings. Always current on changes impacting higher education, he is a resource to campus leadership who must balance budgets, student needs and stakeholder voices when planning new facilities. Here, he talks about why higher education work inspires him and why, quite frankly, he loves meeting with clients.
The renovated Janet Wallace Fine Arts Center has created a campus focus for the arts at Macalester College in St. Paul.
Performing and visual arts programs have long jostled for new or improved spaces on college campuses. They often find themselves competing with capital campaigns promoting state-of-the-art student centers, STEM classrooms and labs, athletic facilities, and amenity-rich student housing that promises to give one campus the competitive edge over another. Thus, college arts programs are frequently housed in aged and makeshift buildings.
WHAT ARE STUDENTS LOOKING FOR IN LEARNING SPACES TODAY?
Students are looking for opportunities to connect with each other and faculty on different levels, from in-person to social media. They are drawn to flexible spaces that support formal and informal activities. Learning is an active process, and many academic spaces today are blurring the lines between instructional time, lab time and personal time so that students can work collaboratively outside the classroom. Experiential learning supports workplace readiness, and encourages students to extend classroom learning to the broader campus, surrounding neighborhoods, regional community, and ultimately the workplace.
The Jack H. Miller Center for Musical Arts at Hope College in Holland, Michigan, reflects a growing trend among colleges to share educational and cultural resources with their hometown. By working together, campus and town can plan facilities that benefit curriculum and community needs. The following three points detail how Hope College created an exceptional new Music Hall that enriches the campus and Holland.