Virginia Commonwealth University Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar

mission statement

VCUQatar is the Qatar campus of the prestigious Virginia Commonwealth University School of the Arts in Richmond, Virginia. Established in 1998 through a partnership with the Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development, VCUQatar offers students the opportunity to earn a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in fashion design, graphic design, interior design and painting & printmaking and a Master of Fine Arts degree in design studies. VCUQatar is fully accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art & Design, The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, and the Council for Interior Design Accreditation. VCUQatar has substantial involvement with the emerging design industries in Qatar and the region and is a significant catalyst for that growth. It has established itself as a center of excellence for education and research in art and design. Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar exists to foster a scholarly climate that inspires creativity, a free and open exchange of ideas, critical thinking, intellectual curiosity, freedom of expression, and intellectual integrity. Vision Our vision is a Qatari society that innovates through art and design. Mission VCUQatar is a center of excellence for education and research in art and design. Through its programs, the university develops individual capacity to lead innovations in the creative and cultural professions in Qatar and the region.

international role

VCUQatar is the Qatar campus of Virginia Commonwealth University School of the Arts in Richmond, Virginia. Established through a partnership with the Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development, is located in Doha, the capital city of Qatar. The current student body represents a diverse range of nationalities with students coming from more than 41 different countries. VCUQatar was the first campus established in Education City, a unique 2500-acre campus community. The university has since been joined by Georgetown University School of Foreign Service, Carnegie-Mellon University, Texas A&M University, Weill Cornell Medical College, Northwestern University, and HEC Paris. VCUQatar strives to provide an engaged, learner-centered environment that fosters inquiry, discovery and innovation in a global setting. The University hosts the biennial international design conference Tasmeem and the biennial Hamad bin Khalifa Islamic Art Symposium, attracting globally recognized designers, academics and thinkers while fostering sustainable, university-community partnerships that enhance the educational, economic and cultural vitality of Qatar. VCUQatar has substantial involvement with the emerging design industries in Qatar and the region and is a significant catalyst for that growth. In 2008, VCUQatar spearheaded the foundation of the Middle East Design Educators Association (MEDEA) which serves as an inspirational and information platform for design educators and practitioners in the Middle East. MEDEA provides an opportunity to share ideas, methods, challenges and opportunities, and to foster dialogue between the design industry and those who educate the next generation of designers. VCUQatar faculty and staff support: 1. Cultural diplomacy - We are ambassadors creating a bridge that connects the United States and the Middle East, as well as being a peaceful, positive “melting pot” of many cultural and ideological backgrounds from throughout the world. 2. Developmental impact on people, a country and a region - We are educating people who will have significant impact and leadership roles in the rapidly emerging society, culture and economy of the region, specifically young women who otherwise may not have had the opportunity to study in a top international art and design university. 3. Developmental opportunity for internationalization of education and research - We are positioned to be an “on the ground” source and resource for research and development to internationalize curriculum and research questions through collaborative engagement between VCU-R, VCUQatar and other international art and design institutions.

national role

With the exponential growth in Qatar and the region, the participation of our students and graduates in all sectors of society is vital. Successful economic and cultural growth requires the conscientious design thinking and creative processes that are core to VCUQatar’s educational approach. Designers and artists amplify their cultural context though the creation of products, communications, fashions, systems, and many other forms of art and design. Designers help people understand and find comfort in environments as large as a city, a hospital, or a park, and as small as an office, a book or a mobile phone. VCUQatar is a center of excellence for education and research in art and design. Through its programs, the university develops individual capacity to lead innovations in the creative and cultural professions in Qatar and the region. Our alumni are spreading their creative vision through their work as entrepreneurs, and as designers in public and private organizations. Their expressions will have a lasting impact on a sustainable future both in Qatar and internationally. Our vision is a Qatari society that innovates through art and design.

main focus

VCUQatar is the Qatar campus of the prestigious Virginia Commonwealth University School of the Arts in Richmond, Virginia. Established in 1998 through a partnership with the Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development, VCUQatar offers students the opportunity to earn a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in fashion design, graphic design, interior design and painting & printmaking and a Master of Fine Arts degree in design studies. VCUQatar is fully accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art & Design, The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, and the Council for Interior Design Accreditation.

faculties and departments

Art and Design Foundation Fashion Design Graphic Design Interior Design Painting & Printmaking Liberal Arts and Sciences MFA Program in Design Studies (MFA.DESIGN.)

bachelor level programs

Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Fashion Design 4 year full-time program Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Graphic Design 4 year full-time program Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Interior Design 4 year full-time program Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Painting & Printmaking 4 year full-time program

master level programs

Master of Fine Arts degrees in Design Studies 2 year full-time program

research activity and main areas

VCUQatar recognizes the ever-present and evolving role of design and its related disciplines by supporting pure, applied, and creative research that: - drives innovations in design and education - enriches local knowledge - develops and diversifies human and economic capacity within Qatar - promotes interaction between Qatar and the international research community - has the potential to yield tangible benefits for Qatar\'s vision of the future VCUQatar’s Center for Research, Design and Entrepreneurship, along with the MFA program, are bringing together all the components for educational, undergraduate and graduate research. VCUQatar and Bloomsbury Qatar Foundation Journals launched the design research journal, Tassmeem: Design.Research.Connect. Tassmeem is a refereed, open-access, international design journal that provides a multi-modal forum for the exchange of ideas and findings on all aspects of creative research. The aim of the journal is to publish high quality, thought-provoking, original research that engages in the evolving scholarship of design. Tassmeem has a special interest in research related to, or about, the Middle East, and in particular, to design research that addresses modernization and the preservation of traditions, economic growth, social development and environmental stewardship. VCUQatar faculty, staff and administration published 71 scholarly articles and creative works; three books; participated in 27 international presentations; participated in 15 exhibitions; received 30 grants, awards and citations; and participated in 13 scholarly review boards. They presented at conferences, held workshops or exhibited their work worldwide, in countries such as Australia, China, Canada, Denmark, Ghana, UAE, USA, Malta, South Africa, Japan, Lebanon, Germany, India, UK, Italy, and Qatar. VCUQatar Major Research Projects 2010-11: 1. Qatar Unified Imaging Project Funded by the Qatar National Research Fund (QNRF) through the National Priorities Research Program (NPRP) in June 2010, the Qatar Unified Imaging project (QUIP) seeks to identify significant collections of primary source materials about Qatar and the surrounding Gulf. Assistant Director, Library/Visual Resource Curator at VCUQatar Tammi Moe is working as principle investigator along with Dr. Kaltham Ali Al Ghanim from Qatar University and Dr. James Onley from Exeter University on this three-year research project which is a collaboration between Virginia Commonwealth University Qatar, Qatar University, Exeter University, Illinois State University, the Ministry of Culture and the National Museum of Qatar with the team being advised by a steering committee of Qatar’s cultural and historical experts. 2. Orality to Image: Traditional Qatari Narratives and Visual Media Funded by the Undergraduate Research Experience Program (UREP) grant, the project aims to preserve and represent traditional Qatari culture by adapting cross-generational oral narratives into text and graphic form. The project is led by Patricia Paine Gibbons assistant professor and assistant director of LAS at VCUQatar along with assistant professors Jesse Ulmer and Donald Early in collaboration with Dr. Sara Al-Mohannadi, assistant professor of English Language at Qatar University. The stories collected will be presented in both Arabic and English and will be accompanied by visual illustrations to create a series of graphic stories which will be collected in an anthology targeted at all readers who are interested in Qatari culture in general, and young adult readers in particular. 3. A Portable Architecture for Qatar: Improving Migrant Worker Conditions by Design This project originated at VCUQatar’s biennial design conference Tasmeem Doha, and is aimed to address the need for temporary labor accommodation associated with Qatar’s rapid growth and development. Qatar Science and Technology Park (QSTP) is the funding organization for the $1.4 million project while QSTP’s Technology Innovation and Entrepreneurship Program (TIEP) developed the business model. A prototype is being constructed in Education City to conduct thermal performance monitoring. After a successful completion and testing of the prototype, Qatar’s Design Zone will move the concept into its next phase and build a pilot project for approximately 1,000 workers to investigate if and how this new living model influences the workers’ overall well being. The goal of this next phase is to prove sustainable economics by demonstrating increased productivity and quality of work for migrant workers in Doha 4. The VCUQatar Center for Research, Design and Entrepreneurship is currently working with Sidra Medical and Research Center to design their staff uniforms, patient apparel and linens. The design team, comprising VCUQatar faculty and alumni, is responding to Sidra’s vision by creating designs which will not only respond to the cultural sensitivities of Qatar and the specific needs of women and children, but will also reflect the growing trend in the design of healthcare facilities toward a ‘Five Star’ experience where the patient is treated as a guest from the moment they arrive. The uniforms, patient apparel and linens will play an important role in achieving this vision. The final designs will walk the runway at VCUQatar’s annual fashion show in May 2012 and production is scheduled for Sidra’s anticipated opening in December 2012.

doctorate level programs

N/A

subject areas for exchange students

Art and Design Foundation Fashion Design Graphic Design Interior Design Painting & Printmaking Liberal Arts and Sciences MFA Program in Design Studies (MFA.DESIGN.)

teaching languages

English

semester dates

Fall: September -December Spring: January - April Summer: May - July

cost of living per month (studying and living)

Undergraduate tuition for year – QR 74,212 / $20,388 Undergraduate tuition per credit hour – QR 3,094 / $850 Graduate tuition for year – QR 68,348 / $18,777 Graduate tuition per credit hour – QR 3,796 / $1,043 Mandatory Book Fee per year – QR 2,985 / $820 Accomodation costs (Estimated *) On-campus Qatar Foundation Student Residences: Boarding Fees (annual charge) for shared accommodation - QR 14,000

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