DEAN'S WELCOME


UVA is truly a unique institution with an unparalleled history. No other architecture school is able to claim the honorable distinction of being founded by a revolutionary president/architect. This single condition has brought extraordinary value to all of the disciplines taught within our School, as it is a continual reminder of their importance in relation to not only the building of this nation but also the value of education at its core. And our professional program in Urban and Environmental Planning takes on the challenges of the city and is at the forefront of developments in urban sustainability and green infrastructure.  

Consistently ranked as one of the most admired schools of architecture in the nation, we are extremely proud of our 100-year history and the tremendous successes of our 7000 alumni. The School of Architecture includes four disciplines—architecture, architectural history, landscape architecture and urban and environmental planning and design. These form an incredible network of opportunities for students to study within a single area of specialization yet have access to a wide range of coursework both within and beyond the School. Our highly collaborative community of award-winning designers, renowned scholars, and outstanding students, not only provides an exceptional architectural and urban education but also has a strong multidisciplinary emphasis that allows students to minor in, and gain experience in related design fields. 

Design is central to our mission and continues to be one of the key activities and strengths of the School. It is at the core of our professional degree programs in architecture and landscape architecture as well as our certificate program in urban design. Our pre-professional program in architecture is a challenging and highly rewarding program that not only prepares you for your professional degree in architecture which takes two years to complete after your undergraduate degree, but also enables you the option of direct admission into our graduate professional programs in landscape architecture, and urban and environmental planning. 

Our Design Thinking program, a concentration offered in parallel to our pre-professional undergraduate architecture major, allows our students to expand their application of design to other scales of operation such as product design, communication design, and interaction design and to extend their design research and its methodologies into other fields such as health, education, business, and environmental science. Within this program, our students are encouraged to broaden their education by minoring in another field while studying complex problems in critical ways, with the goal of generating relevant design solutions that benefit the common good. And our professional program in Urban and Environmental Planning takes on the challenges of the city and is at the forefront of developments in urban sustainability and green infrastructure.

The UVA School of Architecture is also a leader in global design education. With travel programs and research studios in cities in Asia, India, Africa, Europe and across the Americas, we support more opportunities for global travel and research for our students and faculty than the vast majority of our peer schools. These opportunities include global research and design studios, summer travel programs and semester-abroad initiatives such as our highly acclaimed Venice and Barcelona programs. Global architectural education is a critically important initiative to address world culture and the diversity and range of architectural practices, while simultaneously tackling some of the most pressing global challenges of the 21st century within a world that is increasingly interconnected — ecologically, technologically, economically, and socially.  We look forward to your participation in our rich cultural environment that will fully engage your intelligence and creativity here at UVA.

Ila Berman DDes MRAIC
Dean and Edward Elson Professor
UVA School of Architecture