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Student Center Design

Creating a flexible, forward-thinking campus hub.

January 7th, 2020 - 2 min read

Student Centers are the place you show off on a campus tours, the spot where students can go to study, socialize, meet, and get the resources they need. According to an EAB Facilities Forum study, campus environment is the number one reason students choose one institution over another, so it makes sense that more universities are investing in new services and amenities for these prominent campus hubs. So how can you design a space that’s innovative and reflective of your university’s mission, but also functional and adaptable enough to stand up to the rapid pace of change in higher education? Here are a few ideas to get you inspired.

Create Custom-Sized Meeting Spaces On-the-Fly

Whether it’s for a student org meeting, a group project, or a campus event, meeting rooms are always in high demand. But it can be challenging to predict what room sizes will be most requested and no one wants to waste the square footage for a huge presentation room that will sit empty 90% of the day.

moving wall GE collaboration space

Moveable walls allow you to quickly divide up a large room space in just minutes with walls mounted onto a floor rail system. Host a large group presentation in an open room, then easily slide out the walls for breakout sessions. Offer the room as multiple small study spaces during the day and slide all the walls to one side for an event in the evening. Practically speaking, this kind of flexibility allows you to utilize one space in a multitude of ways to improve space utilization. But it also creates a fun and engaging collaboration environment for students and faculty.

Moveable walls can be equipped with almost anything you can think of – screens, whiteboards, flip-down tables, storage, cubbies for extra seating – to offer the amenities students are looking for.

movable wall take a seat white board flexible space
flip down table media center flexible workspaces
movable walls white board flexible seating

Get more ideas for using campus spaces creatively by downloading our Campus Design Trend Guide.

campus student secure storage
campus student secure storage

Accommodate a Variety of Work Styles

Like many modern offices, campuses are breaking from the traditional rows of desks and offering a wide variety of different work environments to accommodate different preferences and types of work. While collaborative environments have become increasingly popular in student center design, it’s still important to include plenty of quiet personal study space where students can get into a deeply focused mindset and nooks where they can get a moment of respite from a stressful day.

Although technology integration is an important consideration, be sure you can easily change out equipment as technology evolves over time. And keep in mind, whiteboards are often just as desirable as a shareable screen in many meeting spaces.

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