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Dean’s message

As with Einstein’s saying, we cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used to create them. Keeping that in mind, our new Faculty of Architecture and Interior Design is determined to build a learning environment that enables the development of a particular breed of architects and interior designers who carry a reflective and a critical stance of their own profession and who are capable to address emerging issues/problems by having access to the necessary most up-to-date set of theoretical and practical knowledge. 

Such an outlook is based on a conscious positioning of our future graduates away from a dominant conventional design practice in the real estate sector to the boundaries of that practice where socially and environmentally driven innovations are required.  To further reinforce such a positioning, the outlook of our new Faculty is to reverse the trend of specialization and the decentralization of the production process into capital [business], designers [architecture], and technicians [technology] by building on what Azm University has to offer in other Faculties- consequently integrating into the curriculum of our Faculty courses from the Faculties of Business Administration, Media, and Engineering. Within such a program, our future graduates are expected to innovate and to master all the necessary tools that will ensure that their innovations are context-based, technically sound, and commercially successful.

In this new Faculty of Architecture and Interior Design we do not teach. What we do [or promise to do] is to build an enriching academic learning environment- for students and teachers alike- that induces critical and creative thinking oriented towards contributing in a meaningful way to the contemporary dialectic challenges of their immediate environment and the discipline at large. 

Our innovative curriculum is driven by four interconnected centers of specialties, namely: Theory/History, Computation Design, Material and Technology, and Design Practice- the latter being the central core of the curriculum. Delivery mechanism is inspired by the practice of Ivy League universities where Curriculums are delivered not only through a face-to-face instruction, but potentially by tapping on massive open online courses or open course materials that are offered by these Ivy League universities themselves.  

What further distinguishes our program is our plan to build a state-of-the-art supporting infrastructure. From a high-broadband and fast internet to support interactive e-lectures, to computer laboratories fully equipped with high performance machines and the latest in architectural and design software, 3D printers, laser cutters, routers, and foam cutting machines, a woodshop, a metal shop, and a photography lab- these are all geared to promote an effective feedback loop to design research and experimentation.
 
In short, my aspiration is to see that a center of excellence emerges at AZM University that visibly and positively contributes to our built environment and to the discipline at large. What is missing yet from this framework is its most important ingredient: the students. No matter how rigorous the curriculum is or how updated the infrastructure or how learned and experienced its faculty members are, a bright, energetic, and inspired body of students inevitably forms the main back-bone and the engine of this Faculty and the University at large. We understand this only too well. As we launch our new Faculty of Architecture and Design and lay the foundations for such an enriching environment, we hope to attract students to inspire them and to convey to them the thrills and excitement of starting afresh with all the possibilities and the infinite choices it entails. 

Jamal H. Abed
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