Mar 13th 2017


In early 2012 at IIT College of Architecture, the Dean’s search committee sought a new direction for the school, which would expand its preexisting legacy, by adopting an international outlook and engagement. IIT found such qualities in Wiel Arets, a globally active architect and educator. Previously the Dean of the Berlage Institute in the Netherlands, Arets began at IIT College of Architecture in autumn 2012. His first initiatives as Dean included the restructuring and streamlining of the school’s numerous degree programs; the publication of NOWNESS–a roadmap for the school’s future; the introduction of the Cloud Studio; the establishment of the MCHAP, Mies Crown Hall Americas Price, the award for the best architecture in the Americas; and implementation of PROTOCOL–a digital interactive platform, a digital archive, communication tool for students and faculty, and facilitator and enabler of a new model for architectural education of the twenty-first century. NOWNESS charted the school’s refocused path forward. It announced the College of Architecture’s numerous new plans, including the MCHAP, the Louis Vuitton Student Spark Award, and instituted lectures and debates at IIT Architecture Chicago, connecting architects, educators, and thinkers–all globally engaged with architecture’s future, rooted in technology, the metropolis, and the urban landscape. Arets’ "Re-thinking Metropolis" theme reached a diverse audience and relayed architecture’s multidisciplinary nature. Under Arets, the College developed a new publication office as a critical communication and marketing spine, vital to documenting and sharing the ideas emanating from significant events to the school’s global network. Dean Arets’ leadership has pointed the way forward for schools of architecture and built a strong framework for the College of Architecture’s future academic years. IIT CoA would like to extend its sincere appreciation to Dean Arets, in recognition of the numerous contributions he has made, the many achievements at the school, and for implementing global outreach and debate. Wiel Arets will join the faculty and continue to expand the IIT College of Architecture as an international center of architectural, metropolitan, urban landscape, innovation, and technological discourse.