A Word from Dean Richard Goodstein – October 2014

September 25, 2014

Clemson University's Solar Decathlon Team

Clemson University’s Solar Decathlon Team

Dear Friends,

I often talk about the pillars of the College of Architecture, Arts and Humanities’ strategic mission – the four Cs: Collaboration, Creativity, Critical Thinking and Communication. I believe the college has the distinction of providing extraordinary educational and research contributions to Clemson’s strategic mission through the college’s diverse degree programs and general education contributions. As a Top-20 pubic university, our strategic goals resonate through each of our 11 departments and 34 degree programs.

Recently – and after hearing Fran Mainella, former director of the National Park Service speak – I have come to understand that another “C” might be added to our mission: Courage. Students in many of our programs major in areas in which their career paths are unknown. For us, the four years in an undergraduate degree program, on top of providing the educational and social tools necessary for lifelong success and fulfillment, allow students to mature and face the unknown with courage gained through their experiences at Clemson. If we can enhance a student’s ability to be a highly educated collaborator, creator, critical thinker and skilled communicator while gaining courage for the unknown, the Clemson experience will be one that is the envy of colleges across the United States.

One current project that is the embodiment of the college’s mission is our entry into the U.S. Department of Energy’s prestigious 2015 Solar Decathlon Competition. The Solar Decathlon challenges collegiate teams to design, build and operate solar-powered houses that are cost-effective, energy-efficient, and attractive. Our School of Architecture won a preliminary competition to be one of 20 select schools invited to compete. A multi-disciplinary team of students, faculty and staff from all five colleges has been hard at work preparing our entry for the competition next fall in Irvine, Calif. Our goal is to win – a goal that will take a concerted effort and broad support. I hope you will join our efforts and support in any way you can toward a goal of $1.5M in funding needed for the project. To show your support, please visit this website.

I am equally proud of the students and faculty who have been working on our “Race and the University” initiative. The series of events are designed to create a greater awareness and encourage open conversations about Clemson’s history as it relates to race and diversity. The initiative opened with a well-attended “See the Stripes” event last week that featured poetry, spoken word, music and dance and acknowledges Clemson’s complex past while celebrating our inclusiveness and diversity. I hope you will be able to attend one or more of the many upcoming Race and the University events.

It has been an amazing start to the 2014-2015 academic year.

Best wishes and Go Tigers!