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  #21  
Old Posted May 7, 2009, 4:22 AM
Eeyore Eeyore is offline
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I disagree with you guys. I "fleed the state" to get a good education because Arizona doesn't have any universities REMOTELY comparable to Georgetown terms of quality of education. You can't give all of the best and brightest Flynns. However if the state, instead of spending all this money on these other colleges funneled it all into UofA (and let them raise their tuition) and tried to bring it onto par with schools like Michigan, Virginia, UNC, Berkeley, UCLA, and Texas, I think much more top talent would stay in state. Universities of this caliber also attract a lot of really smart people from out of state many of whom decide to settle down where they got their education after receiving their diplomas. UofA is the only university in Arizona that has the potential to reach this level and already has a pretty good rep. Give the best and brightest a place where we can get an incredible education in Arizona and I think you will see the state reap greater benefits then creating schools "lower" on the hierarchy then ASU/U of A. We should aim for the top, not the bottom. This whole affordability issue is getting redic. Do you guys know how much people pay in-state at the UC's?
I disagree with you. States need to have schools in all tiers that way they can accommodate the entire population.

Let me use Colorado as a example. We have great colleges like the Colorado School of Mines, Colorado College, DU in Denver, CU, UCCS, CU Medical School, CSU Fort Collins, CSU - Pueblo, Adams State, Western State etc. That allows us to give the opportunity to as many people as possible to get a degree. That is one reason why we are becoming the countries renewable energy leader and a have large space industry among others. I think Arizona would be better to adopt that model then to have a few school that only one or two segments of the population can go to, rather its the top tier or lower tier.

I am not sure if there is a coalition here but how many hospitals in Arizona have level 1 or 2 trauma centers? I know a level 1 trauma center works with a university and a level 2 teaches as well. In fact I have met people interning at Saint Mary Corwin Medical Center in Pueblo. This goes with my first point, that more universities that attract a broader range of people is only better for a state.

Last edited by Eeyore; May 7, 2009 at 4:47 AM.
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  #22  
Old Posted May 7, 2009, 4:35 AM
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I disagree with you guys. I "fleed the state" to get a good education because Arizona doesn't have any universities REMOTELY comparable to Georgetown terms of quality of education. You can't give all of the best and brightest Flynns. However if the state, instead of spending all this money on these other colleges funneled it all into UofA (and let them raise their tuition) and tried to bring it onto par with schools like Michigan, Virginia, UNC, Berkeley, UCLA, and Texas, I think much more top talent would stay in state. Universities of this caliber also attract a lot of really smart people from out of state many of whom decide to settle down where they got their education after receiving their diplomas. UofA is the only university in Arizona that has the potential to reach this level and already has a pretty good rep. Give the best and brightest a place where we can get an incredible education in Arizona and I think you will see the state reap greater benefits then creating schools "lower" on the hierarchy then ASU/U of A. We should aim for the top, not the bottom. This whole affordability issue is getting redic. Do you guys know how much people pay in-state at the UC's?
Last I checked ASU was also a tier 1 research institution (Carnegie Doctoral/Research Universities-Extensive). UA and ASU have the potential to be on a high level. Indiana has Purdue and IU, Michigan has UM and MSU, South Carolina has USC and Clemson, Alabama has UA and Auburn, Georgia has UGA and Georgia Tech. Why can't AZ have two great universities?

By creating lower tier universities you allow both UA and ASU to be great universities because they can suddenly be more selective in who they accept. The lower tier will educate the rest.
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  #23  
Old Posted May 7, 2009, 5:46 AM
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Thats a good point about UofA and ASU being able to be more selective if there are other educational options, didn't think of that. I'm not knocking UofA's potential, its already an excellent research university (I think ASU will end up being your average run of the mill state U no matter what happens, its just too big to attract the student body with high #'s that a prestigious U needs, its also solidly in the gutter as far as national ranking is concerned though some of their programs are very good), but you can't deny that neither currently has neither the national cashet, nor faculty quality, nor student quality of a Michigan or a Virginia. However, I think UofA could be brought up to this level given time. Its already a tier 1 university (ranks 96th) according to US News. Its also already quite strong in the sciences. What is needed is a clear differentiation between it and the rest of Arizona universities. For instance, it should stop making people "Auto Admits" if they have a 3.0, etc. They should also get funding priority and have a higher tuition etc. which is used on attracting stellar faculty and which offsets financial aid for more qualified students who might otherwise go elsewhere but can be lured away with $. Ideally, we could do it all and be like California with both the Cal States on one end and the UCLA's/Berks on the other. However, I think in this era of limited resources, its best to focus on our strengths. People complain about Arizona not having an "intellectual" or "cultured" climate. A university that is an excellent flagship even by national standards would go a long way towards giving us a real competent core of home grown people to lead our state government and businesses, something that would be great for AZ in the long run.

I don't mean to offend anyone, only offer constructive suggestions for the state I love from somewhat of an outsiders perspective. I will also more than likely be doing a masters at ASU in the fall and my bro is also about to be a Sun Devil so I want nothing but the best for the university, just trying to offer a realistic appraisal.

Last edited by trigirdbers; May 7, 2009 at 6:11 AM.
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  #24  
Old Posted May 7, 2009, 8:01 AM
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I think ASU will end up being your average run of the mill state U no matter what happens, its just too big to attract the student body with high #'s that a prestigious U needs,
Right thats the point, how can ASU ever be good when the UA controlled ABOR forces them to educate the entire state? Michael Crow and ASUs leadership as well as leadership in the city of Phx want them to be a top flight research school, but their simultaneous mission is to educate the entire state.

Free ASU from the ridiculous task of having to educate everyone in Arizona whos literate and they'd flourish. Creating a multi tiered system allows for more specialization, and isn't specialization almost always a good thing?

Look at all the other schools youve mentioned, they all exist in states where some students just looking for a cheaper option can go somewhere else like Eastern Michigan or Cal State Fullerton.

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Originally Posted by trigirdbers View Post
However, I think UofA could be brought up to this level given time. Its already a tier 1 university (ranks 96th) according to US News. Its also already quite strong in the sciences. What is needed is a clear differentiation between it and the rest of Arizona universities.
UAs been given every imaginable advantage in the world since 1885, how about we switch it up, just for a change of pace? ASU & UA should both be top flight research schools like I had in my flow chart. It doesn't make much sense to have only one top flight school in such a big state (thats growing quite fast as well) and have it being not in the biggest city.
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  #25  
Old Posted May 7, 2009, 5:32 PM
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I told my friend that you guys only have 3 universities and he said this:

Actually there's 6 in az if count the other campus of arizona state.
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  #26  
Old Posted May 7, 2009, 6:35 PM
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^^^^^^ This is true. Consider that the size of ASU is about the size of 6 universities in other states. I believe total enrollment is pushing 70k across all 4 campuses. UA is also massive.
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  #27  
Old Posted May 7, 2009, 7:18 PM
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No state of comparable size has 2 top flight publics. In fact the ONLY state that does is California and thats because So-Cal and Nor-Cal are huge regions and the state as a whole produces enough gifted students and tax revenue to support them. Even in the California system, where all the UC's are "top flight", no one would put IC Davis on the same level as UCLA or Berk which are nationally respected. Also, there is no state where the best university is not the flagship. Even if ASU didn't educate the whole state, even if they had higher admissions standards, its got a lot farther to go to compete with the most prestigious public universities than UofA which is already a quarter of the way there. If we "switched it up", we would be even further from producing a world class university. I don't get why re-making the system in its entirety is vital. ASU does a respectable job at educating the masses. They also have individual programs that are competitive on a regional level such as the business school. This is a decent place for them to be at. Just because Michael Crow and the City of Phoenix want ASU to be prestigious doesn't mean it will be. Every city and university president wants this. What UofA has is a solid foundation. Even though it is "massive" it is no more so than some of the country's most excellent flagships. 30k UG enrollment is sustainable even for a public university of the highest caliber (Michigan and UCLA both have almost as many students). ASU will never be able to cut enough enrollment to compete at this level, too many facilities would be wasted and jobs lost, even if parts were spun off. The one practical proposal of your flow chart is splitting off ASU east and west. I have no idea why this hasn't been on the table sooner, they have all the makings of independent universities.
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  #28  
Old Posted May 7, 2009, 7:32 PM
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That makes more sense because Colorado has more universities but only because we choose to spread out our campuses and each campus has less students. The two biggest have about 25,000 students and CSU Pueblo is the fastest growing university but it has less then 10,000 students and will top out at around 20,000 students.
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  #29  
Old Posted May 7, 2009, 8:33 PM
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No state of comparable size has 2 top flight publics. In fact the ONLY state that does is California and thats because So-Cal and Nor-Cal are huge regions and the state as a whole produces enough gifted students and tax revenue to support them.
Right I guess I should've defined 'top flight', I meant relative to our state. We don't have California's money, so we won't have their system. Theres no reason in my eyes though that ASU can't with proper planning be where UA is now, and UA could move up a bit as well.

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Even in the California system, where all the UC's are "top flight", no one would put IC Davis on the same level as UCLA or Berk which are nationally respected.
Looking at this list: http://colleges.usnews.rankingsandre...ational-search

The UC system has in the top 100:
21. UC Berkley
25. UCLA
35. UC-SD
44. UC-Davis
44. UC-Irvine
44. UC-Santa Barbara
89. UC-Riverside
96. UC-Santa Cruz

By comparison, we have:
96. UofA
121. ASU

Look, Im not asking for any of our public schools to be in the top 10. I know we'll never have a Harvard here, thats fine. Can we maybe get UA into the 50-75 range and ASU into the top 75-100? I really don't think thats asking a lot, is it?

To compare to a state more similarly sized with us Virginia (which is ranked #12 in pop, with 7,769,089, we're #14 with 6,500,180) has:

23. UVA
71. VaTech

Now of course they have advantages over us (other than being slightly larger) like being older and more established and thus a larger network of donors. However, Im not asking us to be in the top 25, just 25 or so slots higher than where we are now. With our growing population and other advantages, I think its a reasonable goal.

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If we "switched it up", we would be even further from producing a world class university.
That was mostly a joke. I just hate that UAs been given every advantage under the sun from the state for over 100 years and still isn't anything special.

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I don't get why re-making the system in its entirety is vital.
Because its a laughable joke as it is now? What does our system do really well? Anything other than attract super hot chicks?

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ASU does a respectable job at educating the masses.
While this may be the case, should it be? Just because its possible for ASU to educate the masses, is it the best allocation of resources? We need to look at not only whats seen (ASU perhaps doing a passable job educating the masses) but also the unseen. How much better could ASU do if it was able to shed 20K students and focus its mission a bit more?

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What UofA has is a solid foundation. Even though it is "massive" it is no more so than some of the country's most excellent flagships. 30k UG enrollment is sustainable even for a public university of the highest caliber (Michigan and UCLA both have almost as many students).
Agreed, you'll notice in my plan I suggested UA having no more than 40K students and ASU having no more than 45K.

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ASU will never be able to cut enough enrollment to compete at this level,
Why not? Again, ASU doesn't have to be UC Berkley, heck UA doesn't have to be either. But can't ASU be ranked around where UCR is? We should be able to compete with the freakin' Inland Empire, shouldn't we?

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too many facilities would be wasted and jobs lost, even if parts were spun off.
Im not quite sure what jobs would be 'lost'. In fact, quite the opposite, you'd be creating thousands of jobs. New teachers and professors at new schools, the construction jobs, maintenance people , administration, etc etc.

Sure some professors in certain programs wouldn't have jobs at ASU anymore because there programs would be taken care of by a different school, but thats not like theyre losing a job, theyre just moving to a different building.

I'm not sure I buy the facilities argument either. A lot of ASUs facilities are in woeful condition. My roommate is an architecture major and the college of design buildings are heinous, dilapidated jokes. They could either be knocked over if they were no longer needed (moving those programs to a different/better building on campus) or repurposed.

For instance a big problem with ASU is that it feels like the worlds biggest community college. Theres fewer students living on campus (as a percentage of the student body) at ASU than at most schools. Maybe some of the buildings could be repurposed into dorms or replaced by dorms. Furthermore, ASU has always been a 'land rich, money poor' school, if it came down to it they could always sell land on the periphery of their campus to generate revenue (though I doubt that would be necessary).
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  #30  
Old Posted May 7, 2009, 8:49 PM
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I told my friend that you guys only have 3 universities and he said this:

Actually there's 6 in az if count the other campus of arizona state.
The other campuses don't count. They still fall back to the original regarding admissions, and programs are rarely duplicated. I can't think of any that are offered at more than one campus.
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  #31  
Old Posted May 7, 2009, 8:50 PM
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I'm not sure I buy the facilities argument either. A lot of ASUs facilities are in woeful condition. My roommate is an architecture major and the college of design buildings are heinous, dilapidated jokes. They could either be knocked over if they were no longer needed (moving those programs to a different/better building on campus) or repurposed.
I don't know what Architecture building you're talking about, but the one I work in has a sick machine shop, a program with national acclaim (in addition to the School of Design Innovation: http://asunews.asu.edu/20090105_designrankings), and a very strange, but certainly not dilapidated north building (the south building, while old, is a far cry better than the neighboring School of Art which has a world of problems that we fortunately do not have to deal with).

The brand new facility for MSD students at Skysong has all state of the art equipment including a render farm to salivate over, brand new rapid prototyping machines, and the like.

I'm not sure exactly what you're talking about here when you call them "Heinous, dilapidated jokes".

Also, am I missing something with regards to admissions? Each college has its own admissions standards. For example, Design majors must submit a portfolio that is reviewed prior to admission into the professional program. Ask any architecture, graphic, industrial, or interior design student and they will tell you that it is extremely competitive. I believe engineering, business, and some of the science programs do this as well, perhaps to a lesser extent - I'm not sure.

If we're talking about programs like psychology that a student could unfortunately pass through without a day being sober, then I am with you all completely. Also, the English program is horrid; I made a girl cry after reviewing her paper for using i, u, and like repeatedly in an academic research paper (she also went to high school at Desert Mountain in Scottsdale). I spoke with the professor about her complete ineptitude when it came to writing and thought it would be a crime against the university if this girl passed. She said unfortunately, that girl was not an isolated case and there's not a whole lot she can do about it at this point. I was thoroughly ashamed after that meeting.

Anyway, I digress. Point being, the ASU College of Design, The Fulton School of Engineering, and the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences might as well be different universities. The degrees one receives are not created equally... which is a shame for someone who works their ass off in the psychology program because they love it.

Last edited by Jsmscaleros; May 7, 2009 at 9:07 PM.
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  #32  
Old Posted May 7, 2009, 8:56 PM
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I'm in general agreement with your goals Hoover Dam. No reason why ASU shouldn't be able to crack the top 100. I do think that 50-75 is not ambitious enough for UofA, if we could somehow get it to crack the top 50 it might develop national pull and reputation. This seems doable, explicitly w enrollment caps. Like you said tho, we don't have California's resources, accordingly, we won't be able to replicate their three tiered system, nor will we be able to afford "city colleges". Hell, PHX can't scrape up 300k to get decent hours for the light rail on the weekends. Hence, we've got to work with what we've got by separating ASU from U of A and spinning colleges off of ASU. Giving community colleges the power to issue 4 years makes a mockery of higher education, and people wonder why the value of a BA is being cheapened.

In regards to admissions, I'm talking about general UG. Obviously, ASU has some very competitive programs like engineering and such but I think we are talking about the universities as a whole.
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  #33  
Old Posted May 7, 2009, 9:11 PM
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I don't know what Architecture building you're talking about.
The stuff in the buildings may be nice, the buildings themselves are AWFUL. They're undeniably ugly and they're brutal fortresses. They have very few windows, narrow walkways, they just feel like prison camps, especially the older building.

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I'm not sure exactly what you're talking about here when you call them "Heinous, dilapidated jokes".
Shouldn't the architecture building of all buildings on a campus be the best? Those two buildings should have all their nice equipment pulled out of them and be knocked over, they're monstrosities.




That building is awful enough to induce suicide. It ought not exist on this planet, its brutally awful.

The North building at VERY best could be described as 'mediocre,' it looks like someone mixed a prison and a suburban office complex:


But either way, my hate for the aesthetics of those awful buildings is neither here nor there. ASU has many buildings that are both ugly and not terribly useful, if certain programs were moved, it would free up space, etc. so that argument stands.

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Originally Posted by Jsmscaleros View Post
If we're talking about programs like psychology that a student could unfortunately pass through without a day being sober, then I am with you all completely. Also, the English program is horrid; I made a girl cry after reviewing her paper for using "i, u, and like" repeatedly in an academic research paper. She also went to high school at Desert Mountain in Scottsdale.
Right, non research fields like English and non fiscally intensive programs could be spun off to smaller schools is the idea.

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. Like you said tho, we don't have California's resources, accordingly, we won't be able to replicate their three tiered system, nor will we be able to afford "city colleges". Hell, PHX can't scrape up 300k to get decent hours for the light rail on the weekends.
Oh I certainly don't think its a goal thats currently feasible. Youd have to almost have a dedicated 'education tax' of some sort to make it possible. Who knows if that would pass. Maybe if you wrapped it up to also give additional funding to K-12 (since we're always bottom of the barrel in that dept.) you could get it to pass.

Like the quotation from Daniel Burnham I typed earlier in this thread, we've got to start thinking big. Maybe some of our big ideas won't com to fruition, but at least we'd be striving for something. As it is now, Phoenix and Arizona leadership in general is entirely visionless. They have no great aspirations, they seem to immediately realize how difficult things would be and just give up, which I find frustrating.
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  #34  
Old Posted May 7, 2009, 9:11 PM
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That makes more sense because Colorado has more universities but only because we choose to spread out our campuses and each campus has less students. The two biggest have about 25,000 students and CSU Pueblo is the fastest growing university but it has less then 10,000 students and will top out at around 20,000 students.
BTW, that's not quite right, CU-boulder has 31k+ students, and CSU-Ft. Collins has 27k+ students. Just wanted to clear that up.
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  #35  
Old Posted May 7, 2009, 9:24 PM
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Haha - thanks for clarifying, Hoover. The structures themselves are nothing to write home about, and the south building is extremely drab. However, I spent two years in the Art Building next door before transferring to the College of Design and all I can tell you is that it is leaps and bounds beyond the inside of the School of Art.

That program is so underfunded that we had to tack up bedsheets on the windows to control the lighting in the painting and drawing studios. Don't even get me started on the nude models...
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  #36  
Old Posted May 7, 2009, 9:47 PM
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Don't even get me started on the nude models...
Youd think this is one area ASU would be "Ivy League" in :/
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  #37  
Old Posted May 8, 2009, 1:22 AM
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The North building at VERY best could be described as 'mediocre,' it looks like someone mixed a prison and a suburban office complex:
Heh. I had a calculus class in that CDN building. The word "Architraz" is inscribed into the sidewalk from when the concrete was poured and I can't think of a more apt nickname for that hideous building.

The inside is godawful as well.
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  #38  
Old Posted May 8, 2009, 4:28 AM
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I'm an architecture student at ASU's College of Design, and I have classes in those two buildings. First of all, the North Building is so much cooler than the south building, but yes I agree that it should be cooler being the architecture building. We should have something like the newer UofA's College of Architecture and Landscape Architecture building. It was designed by Phoenix's Eddie Jones and is only two years old:

http://www.lloydconstruction.com/images/portfolio/education/college-architecture1.jpg

http://www.lloydconstruction.com/images/portfolio/education/college-architecture2.jpg

It's a great building...next time you're in Tucson check it out. http://www.jonesstudioinc.com/28/index.htm

Also regarding the "Architraz" on the sidewalk. Being an architecture student, I can say that it is not in regard to the building's design, it is in regards to what goes on inside the building, and the lives that architecture students live. Sometimes it is called architorture.
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  #39  
Old Posted May 8, 2009, 8:22 AM
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^Egads ... That thing is awful. It looks like a disgustingly bland box trapped in a prison to prevent itself from escaping to make other disgustingly bland boxes.

I think if anything this speaks to the hit or miss quality of university architecture. I practically grew up at ASU and it took me years to appreciate all the modern-era boxes there. Then there are other buildings like Coor and Computing Commons that rock.

Still, the south building tho is unfamiliar to me...and I agree, it is a mistake on every level. It is curious that it of all things is such a wretched example of Southwestern Mediocre.

I don't hate the north building but I always figured a design college would have a ... designed ... building. It looks like a bit of a joke in retrospect.

I like the discussion this has generated. I would encourage everyone interested to send an email to let everyone know about how you think the system should grow.

The incoming ABOR president Ernie Calderon's email is calderon [at] azlex.com .

The legislator who could make this happen is Rich Crandall, his email is rcrandall [at] azleg.gov.

It's really nice to think that college reform in Arizona could happen in a reasonable timeframe. Who knows, maybe we get an academic building boom like ASU itself went through in the late 1950's when they upgraded to a university.
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  #40  
Old Posted May 8, 2009, 8:52 AM
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Strangely enough, I much preferred the south building over the north during the 5 years I spent at ASU's CAED. The north building is a complete disaster in terms of aesthetics and particularly with regard to the public spaces. The building was designed by a firm out of Princeton of all places (I forget the name) and they did really lovely things like creating 'dead square', an outdoor two story volume in the center of the building that has never had any real function. They also were smart enough to provide a lounge for students with indoor and outdoor space. Except that it's on the SOUTH side of the building...and clad in a hideously reflective white tile. You can actually get snowblinded out there.

I don't know, maybe I just really didn't enjoy my time in Architraz enough (and I assure you...the name has everything to do with the design).

Funny story, we actually got severely scolded by the CAED dean for our homecoming float one year. We built a giant jail cell and hung a huge sign on the back that said 'Architraz'...and then rode in the parade. Needless to say, he was not pleased.
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