Monday, August 31, 2009

Back To Storrs...

This year began last Tuesday with the usual hustle and bustle of students rushing to their new classes and taking their seats near familiar faces they missed over the long three months of summer vacation. Professors wasted no time handing out their assignments and lists of expectations, while students of the SoA began settling in to their new, cozy studio bays (or watercolor classrooms). Our plates were immediately full of projects and to-do-lists, and we almost didn't notice the newest litter of students roaming the halls looking lost, intimidated, and confused.

Why, hello first years....

Welcome to the SoA! You have just completed your first week of the rest of your creative lives and the roller coaster is just beginning. You've met a few nice people, made acquaintences with your equally terrified neighbor, and perhaps have learned which professors do not wish to be acknowledged by their last names. Your pristine borco is littered with 4x6 nonsense, that right now, means very little to you, but just give it time... this school gets weirder.

Right now you're a stranger in a foreign land where people speak in datum, hierarchy, and fibonacci. But there are ways for you to quickly become a much more comfortable sleepless zombie in this world of strange faces.

If you attended the free BBQ luncheon on Friday (I don't know why you would turn down free meat), then you might have stayed long enough to meet this years 2009-2010 AIAS Board. Perhaps a small question such as "who are these happy people?" crossed your mind or maybe "why are there so many vowels in the name of their organization?".

Well I encourage you all to bring those questions to our first AIAS meeting of this year, Wednesday, September 2nd, 2009 at 5:30 in the gallery (the room with the sweet paintings in it next to the office). In the meantime, enjoy your lack of sleep and consistent confusion.


Monday, August 24, 2009

Studio Culture Policy

A studio culture policy is an agreement negotiated between students, faculty and staff in an effort to create a positive learning environment. The intention is that through these guidelines a culture of respect, optimism, sharing and innovation will emerge; one in which faculty are mindful of the environment they create. Promoting a healthy studio environment is paramount to fostering designers who are socially responsible, confident, and engaged in the profession.

In addition to affecting the learning environment and experience for students, the studio culture policy is also a condition for NAAB accreditation. Although the policy will be a living document that is always open to debate and revision, submitting a carefully considered and thorough draft to NAAB is very important to our accreditation review which will be taking place this spring. Please download the pdf or refer to the handout you received during convocation and post any comments or concerns you have on this blog entry. If you have any questions please email the AIAS at