UO’s new College of Design will put the focus on creativity

The University of Oregon School of Architecture and Allied Arts will soon have a new name and a new organization designed to “enhance the programs, bring increased value to the degrees earned, and position the students, faculty and staff for greater success.”

In a message to the campus community, Scott Coltrane, provost and senior vice president, announced his approval, which will transform the school into the College of Design.

“For more than a century, students and faculty members have looked to the University of Oregon for outstanding programs in these areas,” Coltrane wrote. “The quality of these programs is a pillar of the university’s strong reputation around the world. It is in that spirit of excellence that these changes will build upon the university’s strengths, foster collaboration and innovation, and continue to create student experiences that are second to none.”

The name will officially change July 1, with the new organization on track for implementation with the start of fall term.

“We are a unique and diverse academic community founded on the principles of interdisciplinarity and collaboration,” said Christoph Lindner, dean and professor of the School of Architecture and Allied Arts. “As the home of creativity at the UO, the new College of Design will unlock our ability to achieve new levels of success, building on a tradition of innovation dating back over 100 years. Our new name signals a shared commitment to creative problem-solving, original thinking and real-world engagement.”

In the coming months, Lindner will work to define the College of Design’s structure, which will encompass four distinct, yet complementary areas:

  • School of Architecture & Environment
  • School of Art + Design
  • School of Planning, Public Policy and Management
  • Department of the History of Art and Architecture

This structural concept was explored throughout fall 2016, with faculty members, staff and students discussing the idea through a series of workshops, surveys and conversations. Prior to the decision, the concept was also vetted with university leadership and endorsed by the University Senate.

“This new model will at once give greater identity, flexibility, funding and philanthropy opportunities to each of the schools and components within the college while preserving the historic cross-disciplinary enrichment which is created by this amalgam of programs unique to the University of Oregon,” said architect Larry Bruton, a 1967 UO graduate, honorary member of the dean’s advisory council and former partner at ZGF Architects in Portland.