BURBANK, Calif., March 10, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- To understand the future of architecture, Architect magazine's latest issue declares "look no further than Woodbury University in Southern California." Woodbury, where Hispanic and minority students make up the majority of architecture students, is featured as the cover story in the March magazine from the American Institute of Architects.
The recognition that Woodbury students are, as School of Architecture Dean Norman Millar says, "cresting the wave of the future" is only the latest for the 126-year-old university. The Education Trust singled out Woodbury last year as a school where Hispanic students are thriving, noting Woodbury's Hispanic students graduate at rates well above the rate for Hispanic students nationally and at rates similar to those for white students. Excelencia in Education also recognized Woodbury's undergraduate architecture program for its strong record of serving Hispanic students and the U.S. Department of Education awarded the university a $2.8 million grant to expand its Master of Architecture program and increase student opportunities including those for Hispanic students to succeed at the graduate level. And, a $600,000 grant from U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to the Arid Lands Institute at Woodbury University will educate students and stakeholders about the complexities of problems surrounding water in the West and seek solutions to this challenge in low-income communities.
"Woodbury's students are typically the first in their families to go to college, and they're coming here in search of their entre to economic success," says David M. Rosen, Ph.D., senior vice president, Academic Affairs, Woodbury University. "For them, a college education is their ticket to fulfilling their dreams, the dreams of their families, and the dreams of their communities. Woodbury feels a deep responsibility to help turn these aspirations into reality."
"Over a period of many years, we have become a place where broad cross sections of people can come and be recognized for their talent and their potential," says Rosen. "By focusing on the needs of the individual student and making that student successful, we have created a culture that honors differences and allows all ethnic, social, and economic groups to work together to achieve their goals."
Millar points to the highly personal nature of the relationships between students and professors at Woodbury and the individualized attention all Woodbury students receive as keys to the university's approach to higher education. Nearly 70 percent of Woodbury undergraduates are in studio-based academic programs in the School of Architecture and the School of Media, Culture & Design, with students working daily on projects and receiving real-time feedback from their professors and fellow students as opposed to periodically taking tests. Students in Woodbury's School of Business and the Institute for Transdisciplinary Studies benefit similarly from project-based learning and close interaction with faculty. Other unique Woodbury strategies include an emphasis on student success through the university's support services, including a program that assigns each student a peer mentor in their first semester. In addition, Woodbury has invested heavily in financial support for its students with approximately 94 percent of undergraduates receiving some form of financial aid.
Founded in 1884, Woodbury University is one of the oldest institutions of higher education in Southern California. Woodbury offers bachelor's degrees from the School of Architecture, School of Business, School of Media, Culture & Design, and Institute of Transdisciplinary Studies, along with an MBA program, Master of Architecture, Master of Architecture in Real Estate Development, and Master of Organizational Leadership. A San Diego campus offers bachelor of architecture and Master of Architecture in Real Estate Development degrees.
SOURCE Woodbury University