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June 1, 2020

Dear Students,

GSAPP has been working intensely over the past several weeks with the University in preparation for the next academic year, despite the tremendous difficulties and uncertainties we are living through at this moment. With an unwavering commitment to create a rich academic experience, we are preparing a hybrid learning model that expands and builds upon the exciting experiments that have taken place this spring and will be occurring this summer. We are eager to share more about these plans in the coming weeks through our regular GSAPP Family newsletter.

We believe this hybrid model, which blends the online and the in-person, will not only enable new and groundbreaking approaches to re-imagining what architecture, design, planning, and development pedagogies might hold today and for the future, but also allow maximum flexibility for accommodating students facing COVID-19 challenges, such as travel restrictions and delays in obtaining visas.

While we would all like to return to face-to-face interactions, this hybrid model will offer a way to gradually increase in-person instruction as safety, public health, and New York State recommendations allow—starting with the most crucial aspects of our pedagogies, such as studio and laboratory instruction, as well as with limited lectures and models of instruction based on flipped classrooms.

Columbia University has also made the key decision to use the three upcoming academic terms—Fall 2020, Spring 2021, and Summer 2021—in order to provide the greatest amount of flexibility in organizing our educational experiences. While GSAPP has already deferred its three-semester programs (MSRED, MSAAD, and MSAUD) to a Fall 2020 start date, we are planning to proceed with the Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 terms for MARCH, MSUP, MSHP, and MSCCCP programs.

Please continue to follow our GSAPP Family newsletter this summer for further updates as well as for information about online events and resources. We are filled with hope and excitement at the idea of welcoming all of you back this fall, and we look forward to your inspired, vital, and engaged ideas about architecture, cities, and the environment—ideas that we must strive to materialize and apply, as we imagine together other ways of learning, being, and sharing in the world.

In the meantime, please do not hesitate to reach out to us with additional questions or topics you would like us to address by emailing Danielle Smoller, Dean of Students, at ds89@columbia.edu.


Amale Andraos