Editor's Focus
Editor's Focus: Excellence in Educational Interiors

Editor's Focus: Excellence in Educational Interiors

This year marks the 25th anniversary of American School & University’s Educational Interiors Showcase—the premier national design competition honoring award-winning school and university interior environments. 

Over the years, some of the most outstanding education spaces have been profiled in the pages of AS&U and online at www.SchoolDesigns.com, serving as inspiration for today’s school and university projects. Each environment’s unique approach offers insight into what may or may not work for your specific project.

The 2015 main K-12 honor was awarded to Cherry Crest Elementary School, Bellevue, Washington (p.16). Designed by NAC Architecture, the jury’s comments included: “Vibrant. Inspiring. Exceptional learning environment.” 

Higher-education’s top award was presented to University of Massachusetts, Blue Wall at Lincoln Campus Center, Amherst, Massachusetts (p.18). Bruner/Cott & Associates, Cambridge, MA, designed the facility. “Incredible transformation and re-use of space. This is what a college dining experience should entail,” commented the jury.

In addition to the two main award winners, two Special Citations were presented, as well as Gold, Silver and Bronze Citations. Rounding out this special sourcebook are dozens of innovative, exceptional learning spaces. This edition also features a special editorial section that includes comments from some of the leading education architecture and design professionals exploring the evolution of school and university interiors and what today’s education institutions must consider as they plan upcoming projects (p.114).

Having the privilege to serve with fellow jurors Kim Bauer, Director of Design and Construction Services for Georgia State University and Augie Battaglia, Principal/Design Director at FGM Architects, over two days of judging projects was a rewarding experience. Special thanks to both for their knowledgeable input and unique outlook.

The Educational Interiors Showcase would not be the invaluable resource it has been for the past quarter-century without the schools, universities and architects that have shared their exceptional projects and unique perspectives on educational interior design and planning. Hopefully, the projects included in this year’s edition will spark new ideas and approaches to how the next generation of school and university interiors will be designed, furnished and function.

And thank you to the architects and education institutions that shared their unique projects. May you find inspiration from them as you embark on your next project to create the next generation of exceptional learning environments.

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