August 16, 2016 by Aaron McCauley, Anna Anklin, Ashlan Jones, Black Spectacles, Caleb R. Munson, Cameron Kayne, Carlos Sotelo, Claire Natola, Clayton R. Daher, Elizabeth Seidel, Gabrielle Herbosa, Jenn Elder, Jenny Nguyen, Jeremy Gentile, Kimberly Tuttle, Marcos Cruz Ortiz, Mariah Tobin, Morgan Stahl, Natalie Neumann, NCARB, Nick Serfass, Rachel Law, Sarah Curry, Sarah Wahlgren

In our first walk to class during freshman year, we were fascinated by the variety of languages we hear down the corridors. Throughout the years at the American University of Sharjah (AUS), we’ve spent most of our time in studio amongst friends from various cultures, which opened our minds to different philosophies, traditions and allowed for a more exciting experience. As AUS students, our learning experience extends beyond the classroom walls and the studios’ pin up boards: the AUS hosts more than 80 different nationalities, as well as offers a diverse range of courses and fervently encourages extracurricular activities.

One of the many benefits of studying architecture in the College of Architecture, Art & Design (CAAD) at the American University of Sharjah, is that, according to the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB), it is the only NAAB Accredited architecture program outside of the United States (2015).

The AIAS chapter at AUS has a goal of bringing together the CAAD Community, and it has been succeeding in being the bridge that helps link different levels, majors, faculty and students. Through a series of events ranging from simple movie nights to huge lectures by renown architects, AIAS at AUS has created an environment where both fun and academia are celebrated. The chapter also organizes competitions within the college to boost students’ creativity and allow them to apply their architecture and design knowledge learnt in classrooms and studios.

Additionally, the chapter organizes workshops given by student from higher years to introduce new softwares and programs to first and second year students, in hopes of expanding their architectural horizons and decrease design limitations. The spirit that has been created drives students to become more inventive and welcomes more interaction which in turn forms a healthier learning environment.