The Program :: Design Approach
Archeworks pursues an alternative education philosophy that combines disciplines and looks at design in a holistic, ethical manner.
Social, ecological and technological developments have shifted the relevance of the traditional curricula with its emphasis on design and theory. Archeworks focuses more on "hands-on" practice than the conventional "ivory tower" separation of academy and practice.
The Archeworks philosophy is radically constructed around the networking of different design disciplines, one reinforcing another, in the conviction that no one discipline can adequately address all the issues that are involved in finding a solution for the challenges in urban society today.
Located in Chicago with its varied local traditions represented by Carl Sandberg and Saul Bellow, Frank Lloyd Wright and Ludwig Mies Van Der Rohe, Archeworks reflects the heritage of a "hands-on" city reinforced with a work ethic and vision.
The heart of the Archeworks program consists of research that leads to the development of innovative solutions. Archeworks students meet with focus groups made up of the people who the project is meant to benefit--the actual end-users (i.e., the homeless, HIV/AIDS patients, school children, the disabled). Student teams also meet with professionals working in the field that they are researching--doctors, teachers, manufacturers and other various professionals who volunteer their time to support the project teams. Throughout the academic year, research is a constant in the development process.
Archeworks is equipped with a wood/metal workshop that provides the Students with the tools they need to create models and, finally, the actual products ready for testing by the end-user.
Archeworks student teams are also interdependent. The open warehouse-style
workspace encourages the cross-breeding of ideas among different
A Multi-Disciplinary Environment
Archeworks students come from a wide variety of backgrounds and stages of professional experience, including: Art, Architecture, Art History, Industrial Design, Interior Design, Nursing/Healthcare, Political Science, Education, Creative Writing, Urban Planning, Engineering and Social Work. Typically one third of the student body are architects, one third are designers, and one third come from other fields. Some students may be mid-career professionals in search of new stimulation in their lives.
Teamwork is essential for the success of Archeworks projects. Archeworks
accepts applications from students enrolled in diverse undergraduate
and graduate programs as well as professionals at various stages of
their careers. Archeworks believes that creating project teams of individuals
from varying disciplines creates the best design solutions. Project
teams include 3 - 8 students.
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