Patterson Hall houses the Office of International Affairs and a unique collection of foreign language and culture programs from the College of Arts and Humanities. On the first floor, the program includes services provided by the Education Abroad and International Student and Scholar Services departments, joined through the Global Lounge, acting as a collision space for Maryland students headed abroad and international students and faculty.
On the second floor, the Confucius Institute of Maryland and the Maryland China Initiative bring a mix of Chinese cultural and entrepreneurial services together including training facilities, lounges and a library to house outreach efforts. This floor also includes the Office of International Affairs think tank, which collaborates with units across campus to develop new programs. Connected by a two story atrium, the Global Lounge and the East Asian Library create a dynamic and active international presence at the heart of the historic campus and the main entry of the building. The space is arranged to visibly and physically connect historically distinct departments, offer opportunities for interaction between students and faculty and engage visitors in the breadth of international opportunities. In bringing together these elements, UMCP is positioning Patterson Hall to become a center of growing international presence with the idea of ‘Introducing Maryland to the world and introducing the world to Maryland.’
Patterson Hall includes a complex array of ten international programs, some of which are student services and others are academic. The arrangement of this program within the building required an understanding of which spaces had high levels of student traffic and which received important delegations from other countries, which required quiet space for research, study or sensitive personal conversations and which were best served by an active environment, and which of these departments would be best served by being co-located to create synergies that began to ‘de-silo’ the organization.
A programming exercise which explored these relationships and concerns was critical in identifying strategies that reflected the true requirements for the project’s ultimate success, well beyond tabular program information and room data sheets. The process itself resulted in a consensus driven organizational philosophy that resulted in a nuanced physical relationships between components of the program and helped each department understand the rationale for decisions made regarding their own space.
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