Jindal's new architecture school is taking students out of the box, into the streets

Jindal Global University's latest course Jindal School of Art and Architecture is all about transforming students into experienced architects
Jindal School of Art and Architecture aims at building a professional background for its students
Jindal School of Art and Architecture aims at building a professional background for its students

A small design has the capability to change the whole city - this is what Jindal Global University's vice-dean Jaideep Chatterjee believes. He is also adamant about the fact that for design and architecture to do its wonders, the students need to get out in the real world as soon as possible. 

Therefore, it is pretty certain that Jindal Global University's (JGU) latest course, Jindal School of Art and Architecture (JSAA) is all about exposing its 60 potential students to the practicalities of what they call 'a built environment'. "Jindal has been planning to establish a school of architecture for a long time now. The idea is to imagine sustenance holistically. One of the major problems with design-orientated courses is that they are very paper oriented," he begins.
The JSAA aims at changing that and Chatterjee explains how. "Students are used to creating designs on papers. They don't talk about its construction or its post-occupancy. They are not used to going back to how it is made and how people are living in it. We want to change that. We will only be working with live projects," he says. And how exactly would they pull that off? Chatterjee reveals the brilliant plan, "Design studios! What we are doing is taking the design studio to the field directly. Basically, the students are not going to sit in the classrooms. They will be going to the city, going to come up with a design and then implement it. This is absolutely unique in this country," he says. 
This practice will take place after the students finish the first year of their foundation course. After which they will be guided by two architects, one from the college faculty and one from the industry. "The idea is to break down the barriers that have developed in the country. If you look at it historically, this is how the education for built-in environment used to work. There is no other way to do this," Chatterjee explains.  
Under JSAA, the university essentially offers two courses to the students - BA (Hons) in Built Environment Studies, a three-year design program which is unique to India and the professional five-year program, Bachelor of Architecture (BArch)

Professor Thomas Mical, Dean-Designate, JSAA also underlined the importance of ‘studio culture’ for design schools in his inaugural address.“We have a brilliant opportunity to make a new design school and rethink conventional ways to transform architectural education, ways which are truly inclusive and interdisciplinary in nature. There is a global mandate for sustainability which is spread across design spectrum," he said.


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