U.Va. Hosts U21 Forum on Design of Learning Spaces

September 30, 2009 — What does the college of the future look like? A Universitas 21 forum next week at the University of Virginia will focus on more cohesive development on college campuses in order to create informal learning environments, both indoors and outdoors.

Universitas 21 – or U21 – is the leading international network of 21 leading research-intensive universities in 13 countries. U.Va. President John T. Casteen III has been its chairman since 2007.

Sixteen representatives of U21 institutions, together with 15 U.Va. faculty members, are scheduled to participate in the U21 Learning Environments Design Forum, which is being hosted by the School of Architecture.

The program will consist largely of teams working on a design for the Carr's Hill Arts Commons. In addition, 14 students from U21 institutions will join 12 U.Va. graduate architecture students in a studio project for the same site. The student studio runs from Sept. 30 through Oct. 8.

Plenary sessions are scheduled Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday from 9 to 10:30 a.m. in the Lower West Oval Room of the Rotunda. Topics include the importance of physical space in a virtual environment and the intersections of art and science. The sessions are open to the University community, but seating is very limited. For information, contact Lavinia Johns at 434-924-3247 or lavinia@virginia.edu.

About Universitas 21

Universitas 21 is a network of 21 research-led universities around the world. It aims to promote and achieve collaboration, cooperation and work of a comprehensive nature, drawing on a strong bond of collegiality found between similarly minded universities, all of whom occupy a highly regarded status in their respective global regions. The membership comprises: University of Auckland, University of Birmingham, University of British Columbia, University of Delhi, University College Dublin, University of Edinburgh, Fudan University, University of Glasgow, University of Hong Kong, Korea University, Lund University, McGill University, University of Melbourne, University of New South Wales, University of Nottingham, University of Queensland, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, National University of Singapore, Tecnologico de Monterrey, University of Virginia and Waseda University.