Roger Williams University
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Roger Williams University: A gateway to architectural excellence and professional success

Stanislav Victorovich Yarmoussik’s journey into the world of architecture began during his undergraduate years. Then, he drew upon historical, theoretical, sociological, and philosophical lenses to fully realise the built environment’s role in our world. Fuelled by a desire to explore design further, he moved to the safest college town in America.

Specifically, Yarmoussik headed to Roger Williams University in search of specialised knowledge and skills in its Master of Architecture programme. At this “academic haven,” he found a faculty that brought “diverse perspectives to the practice of architecture, demonstrating unwavering dedication as both educators and professionals in their field.” “It is the strength of these educators that resonates with me, and I feel fortunate to be able to learn alongside and from such accomplished individuals,” he says.

Founded in 1956 and nestled in Bristol, Rhode Island, RWU offers a wide range of programmes, with one core mission: preparing students for professional success. And in the Cummings School of Architecture, this promise takes place through a unique blend of hands-on learning, challenging projects, and real-world experience — each element making the most of its location.

Nestled between Boston and New York City, the Northeast region of the US is a treasure trove for architecture and historic preservation. From renowned architecture firms and historic properties to diverse natural landscapes and bustling urban centres, the opportunities for learning and inspiration are many. Students can learn in a safe environment on RWU’s main campus and still have the benefit of being only a short drive away from the vast resources of major cities like Providence, Boston, Hartford, New Haven, and New York City.

Yarmoussik believes such proximity to a culturally and historically significant area has influenced his understanding of where architecture has been and where it is heading. “Exposure to both historical and contemporary vernaculars enables us, as students, to develop an awareness of crucial aspects of architecture that we can then incorporate into our own work,” he says.

The M.Arch. programme — fully accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB)  — equips students with the knowledge and skills needed to excel in the architectural profession. Students delve deep into the various facets of architectural practice, exposing them to the diverse roles architects play and their interactions with other disciplines.

At the core of the programme lies an emphasis on integrating environmental, social, historical, artistic, technical, and philosophical considerations into meticulously designed projects that enhance their surroundings. Students are encouraged to express human values through their designs, shaping the built environment in a meaningful and impactful way.

Learning here takes you beyond the confines of traditional classrooms. There are opportunities to hone skills in a variety of settings, including studios, lectures, seminars, internships, study abroad trips, fieldwork, public forums, conferences, and community service projects. This holistic approach cultivates well-rounded graduates equipped with a global perspective and a deep understanding of the social and environmental responsibilities of architects.

One of the hallmarks of the M.Arch. programme is its commitment to providing all students with guaranteed paid internship placements. These internships, offered in major cities across the Northeast, the US, and even abroad, are an integral part of the university’s award-winning Career Investment Programme. This allows students to put their theoretical knowledge into practice, gain valuable industry experience, and build a network of professional contacts.

Roger Williams University

The Teaching Firms in Residence programme strengthens the link between academia and industry, with top educators leading semester-long stays from the region, country, and abroad. Source: Roger Williams University

For international students, the internship programme offers the flexibility to work on or off campus in career-relevant placements. This way, all students, regardless of their background, can gain valuable real-world experience. Just ask Abdullah Soufan from Syria:

“The programme helped me and many others find a full-time job after graduation thanks to the internship,” Soufan says. “The internship was my first professional experience in architecture in the US. The internship widened my mind and made me aware of all the other aspects of the industry which they don’t teach in school, from marketing and reaching out to clients to contract negotiations and public bids and management skills.”

RWU’s strategic location grants its students access to some of the world’s most renowned architecture firms. These firms not only provide guest lecturers and host student tours and internships but also contribute directly to the university’s academic fabric through the innovative Teaching Firms in Residence programme.

This programme brings architecture firms such as Hacin + Associates, Gray Organschi Architecture, Perkins & Will, and others directly to campus, transforming them into faculty members who lead graduate studio courses. Students gain invaluable opportunities to work on cutting-edge, real-world projects alongside industry leaders, gaining insights and experience that are simply not possible in a traditional classroom setting.

Throw in advanced facilities like the Architecture Design Studios, and students have many opportunities to learn from the best while practising independently — something students like Abdulmajed Aljabhan is excited about. “Most of the professors not only come from academic backgrounds but are also practising architecture. On top of that, the school offers a Teaching Firm in Residence programme which brings members from top firms to teach real architecture education.”

Interested? Click here to learn more about the programme at Roger Williams University.

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