Dean's Message

Dear Prospective Student:

If you are looking for a college that prepares you for success in the future, Philadelphia University does just that - by putting innovation and interdisciplinary collaboration at the center of your curriculum. In the College of Architecture and the Built Environment, our graduates have a 95% job placement rate. What is our secret?  Giving students the opportunity to learn in a setting that balances theory and practice by working on real-world projects in an active, collaborative, environment.  You will experience a student-centered approach to a professional education, be taught by highly accomplished faculty, and have many opportunities to engage with the professional community and industry partners in one of the greatest cities in North America.

Since my arrival as Executive Dean of the College of Architecture and the Built Environment in August 2012, the college has made great strides toward national and international recognition as an educational leader in sustainable integrated design and practice. Unlike any other college in the United States, the College of Architecture and the Built Environment offers a unique combination of majors providing an unparalleled opportunity for interdisciplinary collaboration and innovation across disciplines and college boundaries. In a very powerful way, our students not only learn to be successful in their own disciplines, but also to communicate and collaborate in teams with students from other fields. At the heart of our education lies PhilaU’s Nexus Learning approach- an active, collaborative, real-world experience, infused with the liberal arts, preparing our graduates to become successful leaders in the global marketplace. The integrated practice model and our curricular focus on sustainable design are reflected in our student’s work and offer evidence of the programs’ excellence and relevance.

You will be joining a student body with a tradition of success. This year alone, our students and award-winning programs have been recognized nationally. Students have won numerous competitions, including first prize in the statewide John Stewardson Memorial Competition and in the Association of Collegiate Architecture Schools Steel Student Design Competition, a competition between all architecture programs in the nation. Interior Design students won first, second and third prize in the regional Tri-state International Interior Design Association competition. We scooped first prize and several top awards in the Jacobs KlingStubbins competitions, as well as first prize in the annual BLTa Interior Design competition. Last but not least, our Interior Design Program received a top 10 ranking from Design Intelligence this year.

In an effort to expand the educational model for sustainable integrated practice and design, this year the college added Masters of Science degrees in GeoDesign and Architecture. With a new core across all graduate programs focusing on sustainable design and integrated practice, the college continues to be committed to educating the next generation of leaders for a sustainable future.

I hope you decide to visit our beautiful campus, which is located in Philadelphia adjacent to the Fairmount Park system. Please let us know if you would like to shadow a current student for a day. This is a wonderful program that allows you to see and feel the heartbeat of Philadelphia University. Please contact the admissions office to schedule your campus visit:

Warm regards,

Barbara Klinkhammer, Dipl.-Ing.
Executive Dean
College of Architecture and the Built Environment