May 9, 2016 | Atlanta, GA
Notice anything different?
We changed our name. What used to be the College of Architecture is now the College of Design.
The “College of Design” is a better reflection of our academic diversity, a more accurate description of what drives our research, and an idea that unites all five schools in the College. We’re proud of the name and confident it will position us as the premier college for technology-focused design education.
This is a change we deliberately and painstakingly made to address our truly interdisciplinary nature and build on our unique legacy as part of the Georgia Institute of Technology.
Since 2010 we’ve noticed how easy it is for people to confuse the College of Architecture with the School of Architecture. Dean French calls it the “New York, New York,” problem, and he’s become adept at a courteous correction.
But even as early as 1975, when we officially became a College, the Industrial Design, City and Regional Planning, and Building Construction programs were stretching the “Architecture” title. Over the last ten years, the number of academic programs we offer has doubled. Three quarters of our degrees are not rooted in architecture.
By 2014, the College’s Strategic Plan prioritized a new name. We hired Armchair Media to conduct a positioning study and help us narrow the possibilities. Based on extensive surveys and interviews with faculty, staff, alumni, students and prospective students, Armchair Media came up with 19 different names.
We weren’t surprised by that number. We’ve always been hard to explain because we’re not like other architecture colleges. What we do is ground-breaking, forward-looking and not easy to describe in one word. Or so we thought.
Now we think “Design” is that word. It’s a name that fits our output as well as our environment.
It’s also a great opportunity for our College to broaden the definition of “Design,” especially since design means many things at Georgia Tech. For example:
- Our School of Architecture uses the intersection between design and technology to solve anticipated challenges of buildings, fabrication, and urban design.
- Our School of Building Construction extends the design process to practical outcomes of the construction industry and life-long building management.
- One of the underlying principles of our School of City and Regional Planning is that efficient and human-friendly municipal environments need to be planned and designed.
- Our School of Industrial Design takes a humanist and forward-looking approach to designing things and environments, but they also use the design process to further integrate – even invent – technologies and objects.
- The creation that happens as part of studying music is realized through our School of Music’s technology programs, which include instrument invention, technology-driven composition and robotics.
So today, we announce a new name for our College.
In the following weeks, you’ll see a new look on our websites. We’ll share stories and photo essays that show how our design, research, and technology create culturally relevant and socially responsible places, products and experiences.
We’ll show you a better future through the College of Design at Georgia Tech!