Thoughts on Starting a New Design Program: 1000 Words


Today over at Core77, MFA Products of Design Chair Allan Chochinov delves into his experience of, and advice for, building a new design program from the ground up. The article gives a great vantage into the upcoming MFA program, and some of the little-known thoughts behind it. Be sure to read the full-length piece here.

And an excerpt to get you started:

The first decision made for the MFA Products of Design department had nothing to do with philosophy or pedagogy or accreditation; it had to do with food. We've devoted a significant amount of the architecture and planning to what we eat—with generous prep space, two full-size fridges and sinks, rice cookers, steamers, slow-cookers and other industrial-grade implements that will help students do better, think better and feel better by supporting their food energy needs. Butcher-block classroom tables gang up into short and long dining tables; drawing demo mirrors double as cooking demo counters. One of the preeminent greenmarkets is five minutes away from the school, open Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays of every week. Several of our faculty are passionate about, and plan to do coursework around, food and food systems. Students will be encouraged to form dinner co-ops (you cook a meal to feed 6 people once a week; the other days you eat someone else's).