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Practice : Spring 2012
Change We Can Believe In Design practitioners have long expressed their concern that our schools too often lag in anticipating changes in professional practice. The BAC in recent years ha s sought to increa se student awarene ss of the principles of multi-disciplinary “design thinking” by broadening our c urricula , expanding opportunities for global learning, a nd diversif ying our practice-ba sed opportunities through community- based Gate way Projects. BAC graduates will be practicing for decade s to come in a wide variety of careers that many of us can barely imagine today—they will need strong skills in design, critical thinking, communications , c ol laboration, a nd awareness of u ser need s and experience. We have been working closely with profession al and accreditation organizations to help cla rify for the BAC what the specific bodies of knowledge are that define each spatial design discipline. Such specific knowledge, applied in practice, en able s interior designers, landscape a rchitects, a nd architects to approach collaborative work with a clear sens e of authority about what ea ch discipline contributes to succ es sful design processes. B ec ause the BAC is the only independent spatia l design college in the Northeast offering accredited programs in architecture, interior design, landscape architecture, a nd design studies , c larifying the parameters of spe cific bodies of knowledge is pa rticul arly important to us in defining the boundaries and overlaps of knowledge we teach, a nd in facilitating equitable collaboration across the disciplines. Such equitable collaboration is a key to ma naging the innovative design processes that are changing our world. This pa st yea r demonstrated an a cc elerated c ommitment to anticipating the more varied needs of our graduates in the years to come. We have: ■ Completed a new fi ve- year Strategic Plan that will help guide our priorities into 2016. ■ Brought together practitioners and educ ators from around the country for a Change Order conference to discuss how the dramatic changes that are taking place in practice will influenc e what and how we tea ch design into the f uture. ■ Completed a multi-year revision of our curricula, with a foc us on introducing trans- disciplinary Foundation teaching to shorten our programs a nd develops clear, self-evaluative skills. ■ Expanded online and hybrid courses. ■ Na med new Heads of our Architecture, Interior Design, a nd Landscape Architecture programs. The se individuals bring deep understa ndings of the distinctive b odies of knowledge that distinguish e ach of the profes sion s, coupled with a strong willingness to work collaboratively to de velop new ways of teaching and learning acros s disciplines a nd in conjunction with innovative practitioners. ■ Designated those faculty who constitute our teaching and intellectual core as BAC Faculty. The growing list include s more than 60 highly distinguished teachers on whom we depend for the delivery of our most fundamental course s and studios. ■ Introduced new Design Studies degree programs in Historic Preservation, and Sustainability, a nd a re e xpanding our offerings in Universa l Design and Accessibility, a nd Environmenta l Graphic D esign. BAC graduates will be practicing for decades to come in a wide variety of careers that many of us can barely imagine today. PRACTICE 2 PRESIDENT’S LETTER ] TED LANDSMARK PRESIDENT’S LETTER