Experiential-based Courses Added to MAPP’s 2022-23 Roster

By Maggie Haslam / Sep 13, 2022

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ReACT house
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Photo courtesy of Dennis Schroeder, US Department of Energy Solar Decathlon.

A community-led studio this fall rooted in restorative justice will devise possible futures for the historically Black College Park community of Lakeland, where students will leverage scenario planning strategies to envision a more inclusive and just path forward. It is one of nearly 300 courses being offered this year with the help of University of Maryland Teaching and Learning Innovation Grants, which fund classroom experiences that propel the university’s vision of excellence and impact for the public good.

“Engaging students in meaningful and impactful experiences connects them to important work they will do as practitioners to address today’s most vexing challenges,” said Dawn Jourdan, Ph.D., dean of the School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation. “This support helps us reimagine how we can deliver education that amplifies creativity, collaboration and daring thinking.”

How are these grants being put to work at MAPP? Here are some of the new offerings you’ll find this year:

Community Planning Studio - Restorative Justice for Lakeland, Maryland. Taught by Professor Clara Irazabal and graduate student Hannah Cameron, this course builds on years of community engagement work led by Associate Professor Mary Corbin Sies to preserve Lakeland’s history as a thriving early Black community in Prince George’s County. With a foundation in restorative justice, students will work with community members and the City of College Park to develop possible futures for Lakeland. A four-part virtual speaker series, “Restorative Justice in the Built Environment,” open to the public, will complement the program.

Project-based learning in Urban Design History and Theory Teaching: Integrating Major Challenges of Our Time, a curriculum staple, gets an important upgrade this year under Assistant Professor Juan Burke, who will challenge students to explore the history and makeup of cities through a multicultural lens and through discussions surrounding important issues like gentrification, immigrant communities and more.

Decolonizing Education to Meet Climate Change Demands: reACT Testbed Lab: This interdisciplinary series of courses will explore sustainable technology and design strategies through familiar stomping grounds: reACT, the university’s second-place winning house in the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon 2017. The one-year, 20-course series, spanning engineering, architecture, landscape architecture and more, will have students digging into the plans that won the house accolades on the international stage. A special topics course this spring taught by Associate Clinical Professor Hooman Koliji will explore climate innovations and justice through design thinking.

Read more about the Teaching and Learning Innovation Grant Initiative in Maryland Today.