The recent realignment of architecture school deans continues. This afternoon, Amale Andraos announced that she would be stepping down as dean of Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation (GSAPP). Her term will end on December 31, 2021.
The news was first announced by Columbia University President Lee C. Bollinger earlier today and confirmed by Andraos in an email that went out to the GSAPP community.
“As of July, I will begin serving as Special Advisor to the President with a particular focus on the work of the Columbia Climate School,” reads Andraos’s statement, “and I look forward to assisting in the building of this once-in-a-lifetime endeavor.
“It has been my greatest honor to serve the GSAPP faculty, students, alumni, and staff over these past years. It is not easy to capture the outstanding intellectual as well as human qualities that I believe render our School special and different: the vibrancy, dedication, passion, imagination, resourcefulness, and creative irreverence that make its ecology sparkle. Thank you all for the thoughtfulness, care, and commitment you have brought to the School over these past years.”
Andraos, who is co-founder of WORKac alongside Dan Wood, began teaching at GSAPP in 2011. She accepted the deanship in 2014 and cited the possibility of tackling climate change through the built environment as a major impetus for accepting the posting. It makes sense then, that, in addition to continuing to teach, Andraos will focus her attention on the newly formed Climate School, which brings all of Columbia’s climate research initiatives and climate-focused majors under one umbrella.
Under Andraos’s tenure, GSAPP launched the first PhD program for historic preservation in the U.S., and more recently, the GSAPP Anti-Racism Action Plan (but not without significant prodding by alumni last summer, as much of the country was seized by protests against systemic racism and police brutality).
Columbia will reportedly release more information on the search for an interim dean in the near future, as well as the search committee responsible for naming Andraos’s permanent successor.