Professionals rank College of Architecture, Planning & Design programs among nation's best
Thursday, Nov. 14, 2013
MANHATTAN -- With three design programs ranked among the nation's Top 10, Kansas State University's College of Architecture, Planning & Design is among the nation's highest ranked.
Kansas State University's graduate program in landscape architecture is No. 2 in the nation, second only to Harvard, according to the latest rankings from DesignIntelligence.
The magazine, whose rankings are considered the primary source for comparison in the industry, also named the architecture graduate program No. 8 and the interior architecture and product design graduate program No. 7 in the interior design category.
Among Midwest schools, Kansas State University's graduate programs rank No. 1 in landscape architecture, No. 1 in interior design and No. 2 in architecture.
The rankings are derived from asking firms to consider their hiring experiences in the past five years and to name the schools whose graduates have been best-prepared for the profession. This year's survey involved 693 architecture practices and corporations, 303 landscape architecture firms and 152 interior architecture firms.
"The state and the region benefit from the caliber of design professionals we produce at Kansas State University," said President Kirk Schulz. "To be not only the best in the state, but also in the ranks of Yale, MIT and Cornell, shows that becoming a Top 50 public research university by 2025 is within our reach."
"The College of Architecture, Planning & Design's programs have been very high in the rankings year after year, and once again we are seeing the incredible national reputation of our programs," said Tim de Noble, dean.
DesignIntelligence also recognized Howard Hahn, assistant professor in the department of landscape architecture/regional and community planning, as one of the 30 Most Admired Educators for 2014. Hahn joined Kansas State University in 2008 after working more than 20 years at design firms. He was recognized for his dedication to understanding what his students will be asked to do as professionals, whether it's a computer program or evidence-based design.
"Our consistently high rankings over the years have boosted our ability to recruit students from across the country as they realize the incredible value of the accredited professional programs in architecture, landscape architecture, interior architecture and product design, and regional and community planning offered at Kansas State University," de Noble said.
De Noble takes particular pride in both the architecture and landscape architecture graduate programs being ranked No. 2 ranking for cross-disciplinary teamwork, second only to Harvard.
Revitalization and expansion is planned for the college's home, Seaton Complex, to meet the needs of the growing class sizes and accommodate student and faculty collaborations across disciplines. The revitalized complex will feature new studios, a 300-seat auditorium, an outdoor amphitheater and more energy efficiency. The project has received a $4 million lead gift from the Regnier family foundation.
"In the interconnected world in which we live, cross-disciplinary teamwork is critical to addressing our most pressing challenges," de Noble said. "What we're trying to do with our new building's design is capitalize on the interdisciplinary nature of our college."
The program's department heads embrace the positive feedback that design professions give regarding the college's alumni.
"The DesignIntelligence No. 2 ranking is wonderful affirmation of the excellent work that our students and faculty do," said Stephanie Rolley, head of the department of landscape architecture/regional and community planning. "The ranking validates what employers tell us: Our students are valued for their professional skills and advanced understanding of contemporary landscape architecture. We are thrilled to enter our 50th year as an accredited landscape architecture program with such high recognition."
"We are so pleased to be recognized once again for the quality of integrated design education afforded through the Master of Interior Architecture and Product Design," said Katherine Ankerson, head of the department. "Our program weaves interior architecture, product design and furniture design together throughout the curriculum so students are constantly designing, making and evaluating -- building the critical thinking skills so necessary to solve some of the problems facing our world today."
"It remains a great honor to be recognized for the quality of our program as we continually strive to provide excellence in a practice-centered professional education that encompasses a broad range of critical inquiry," said Matthew Knox, head of the department of architecture. "With such outstanding students and passionate faculty, it is rewarding to know that our graduates continue their pursuit of excellence and are valued for what they bring to the profession of architecture."