Annex Space Opens for Student Use

Students in the School of Visual Communication Design (VCD) will now have the opportunity to take classes in four newly built studio spaces in the Memorial Athletic Convocation Center (MACC) Annex.

Braun and Steidl, an Akron-based architectural firm, worked with the Office of the University Architect at Kent State to design the studios. The space is approximately 10,000 square feet and features a reception and lounge area with comfortable seating. Each studio is equipped with large drafting tables, high definition monitors driven by teaching workstations, and custom lighting to block out the natural light when appropriate.

VCD Director AnnMarie LeBlanc said that she’s excited for the new space as they represent VCD for the professionally current and relevant degree program it is. “These are top notch facilities for a strong program,” LeBlanc said.

Each classroom is equipped with a teaching station, and LeBlanc is confident the school’s new Lead IT User Support Analyst, Josh Talbott, will leverage these spaces to make the best use for students and faculty.

The new space comes at a pivotal moment for the School.

“We’re interested in redefining ourselves with new spaces. Design has evolved so much since our current facilities were built in the 1970’s,” LeBlanc said. “The new space is efficient, current and ready for us to mold it.”

In light of an eventual move from the Art Building to Taylor Hall, where VCD will join the School of Communication Studies, this transition space will allow VCD the opportunity re-build its facilities and identity.

“Alumni, parents and students will have a sense of place and a better understanding of who we are as a design program,” LeBlanc said.

“With branding of the space, we hope to make the MACC Annex a home that is comfortable for students and encouraging of creativity and hard work,” she added.

Advising, administrative and faculty offices will remain in the Art Building and the school will retain several of its classroom spaces there.


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