Michael Graves School of Architecture comes to Kean University
Bulletin on the fourth floor of Green Lane Building
By Josue Hernandez
Kean University hopes to bring the School of Architecture by the fall of 2015. The Michael Graves School of Architecture is a program that Kean has been attempting to offer for a short while now, and it looks like it’s going to happen.
With the new design building located on Green Lane, Kean is becoming a bigger university, therefore, allowing more classes and newer programs to come along. The School of Architecture is located on the fourth floor of the building.
The Dean of the School of Architecture, David Mohney, is in charge of this operation. The name of the school honors Mohney’s favorite architecture teacher, Michael Graves. Not only will the School of Architecture be here on the New Jersey campus, but in China as well, at the Wenzhou campus.
David Mohney has high expectations when it comes to developing this program and believes Kean is the perfect university to have a school of architecture.
“Since Kean University is in N.J. and really close to N.Y., the school makes it an amazing asset to have because of all the available resources that is around the university-not only here in the U.S., but in China as well, since we have a university over there,” said Mohney.
Promoting the School of Architecture won’t be a hassle; Mohney has it all figured out.
“We will be visiting high schools and other schools of architecture in order to make ourselves known,” said Mohney. “We want to make sure that students know about the School of Architecture here at Kean- both the N.J. campus and the Wenzhou campus.”
Interior design major Saray Orozco likes the idea of the School of Architecture coming to the University. She believes that it will be helpful for her and other design students.
“I think it will be a huge benefit for me,” said Orozco. “Being an interior design major, I am exposed to a lot of architecture both locally and internationally and it allows me to understand my major better and explore the field a lot more and execute a better job.”
Orozco is considering returning to graduate school to study architecture.
Jenise Moody, a senior and also an interior design major, believes the school is a great idea.
“Architecture and interior design can tie together and help me find more opportunities when it comes to job searching and they are very well rounded,” said Moody. “From what I am seeing, people are becoming more interested in the study and are considering changing majors.”
Mohney has high expectations for the School of Architecture and is confident that students will enroll at Kean as architecture majors.
“My main goal is for Kean University to be one of the best architecture schools in the country.”
However, not everyone is supportive of Kean’s new venture. In remarks at the opening meeting of the Kean Federation of Teachers, representing full-time faculty and professional staff, KFT President James Castiglione brought up the School of Architecture.
“Given that architecture has had a weak employment picture for years, and that N.J. already has two prominent programs at Princeton and NJIT, there is no proven demand for this program, other than that of the Chinese government,” said Castiglione. “Reports in the Chinese media that the goal is to make Wenzhou-Kean an international center for architecture make clear that the primary beneficiary is to be the China campus and not ‘Kean USA’.”
Castiglione believes President Farahi is directing resources away from the large academic programs that students want, as measured by their large student enrollments, to small, specialized programs with little demand.