Vision + Mission This is who we are.


We transform the world with good design.

Our mission is deceptively simple. In truth, it’s pretty deep:

We: We’re a group of diverse people pulling together in the same direction.

Transform: We identify need and make change for the public good.

The World: Intentionally broad. We embrace our local neighbors and our worldwide community.

Good: Why not “great” or “stellar?” Sure, we produce great and stellar designs, but “good” is grassroots, far-reaching, meaningful and enduring (just like us).

Design: We design the built environment, interior environment, natural interventions and visual problem-solving. Design thinking is the foundation. Since design is everywhere, so are we.


Strategic Plan

All of our community 鈥 students, faculty, staff, administrators, alumni, partners 鈥 participated in the creation of our 2020 strategic plan, but we know the plan will continue to evolve as the needs of our college and students change.



You can tell a lot about an institution by what they, their people, believe in. During our strategic planning process, every member of our community was represented: Students, faculty, staff, administrators, industry partners and alumni. We talked and challenged. We ideated and iterated (sound familiar?). In the end, we, together, identified these traits as most important to us, but we know that as with any good strategic plan, we will continue to revise it, tweak it, alter it to ensure we’re moving in the right direction. You can tell a lot about us by these values:

Curiosity (Seriously, who talks about “curiosity” anymore? But think about it….it’s core!)

Collaboration (We simply can’t do this without collaboration within our walls and from our ever-growing list of industry partners.)

Exploration (Exploring the world, our community, technology…and within ourselves.)

Innovation (You’ll see innovation in our curriculum…who else combines the disciplines in the first AND final years? And technological innovation abounds for your use.)

Resilience and Perseverance (Boring? Maybe, but we know our students must have these traits to make it here and in their careers.)

Civility (We critique civilly as mature, respectful people. We leave enlightened from the discourse.)

Generosity of Spirit (We look beyond ourselves to extend solutions for the public good.)

Making (We’re a maker culture. We make to make a difference.)

Students and faculty from the college gather on the stairs in the Art + Architecture Building.


Our vision is where we are going. What we “look like” in a future state. Our job is to get us there, but really, the best institutions know there’s never a “there.” Over time, the vision adapts to the needs of students and society while holding true to who we are. We will always continue to improve, celebrating when we succeed and always, ever scrutinizing the vision:

The college is a respected and emulated national leader and an incubator for design innovation. It is supported by world-class facilities and underpinned by a culture of collaboration and open inquiry. Our people welcome innovative thinking and are adaptive to change, and our curious students are enterprising risk takers who are prepared to succeed and unafraid to fail. Through research, creative activity, academic engagement and scholarship, we foster investigations of critical issues in the built environment. We engage with industry affiliates, research institutes and agencies, many of which are led by our own successful alumni who use innovative design to transform the world through improved quality of life in the communities they serve.


Access and Engagement

As one of our strategic priorities, the college is focused on enhancing access 聽to a vivid design education. We are dedicated to creating a diverse community of individuals who bring varying perspectives through their upbringing and life experiences to yeild richer ideas and design.