It’s that time of year again! Set those alarm clocks, purchase those last-minute school supplies, and load those lunch cards – Back to School Season is here! School faculty members have prepped their classroom and finalized their lesson plans to inspire and educate our future community and world leaders. Students are excited to reunite with friends and show off their new #OOTD after a refreshing three months of summer vacation.
Most importantly, they are back in the classrooms that provide opportunities for growth and create experiences to interact and engage with others to encourage thought leadership, curiosity, and other real-world applications for meaningful and impactful learning.
Recently MSA worked with the Indian Hill Exempted Village School District elementary, middle, and high school on several renovation and addition projects. We worked closely with the District School Board when assessing the existing facilities and developed a strategic Master Plan.
MSA has been privileged to work on many education facilities – from local school districts such as Madeira, Mariemont, and Indian Hill, to higher-education facilities such as Xavier University, University of Cincinnati, and career technical colleges like Great Oaks Career Campuses. What do all these buildings have in common? Their spaces provide an environment that supports learning, social interaction, safety, and personal development.
We start many of our education projects by conducting community workshops with district members to discuss issues in smaller groups and gain direct feedback on potential options being considered. After these workshops, we have a better understanding of what the school community needs to create an impactful learning experience for students at all levels of learning.
This past week, we attended Indian Hill Exempted Village School District’s Open House – the night where parents, students, and school faculty got a first look of the primary and elementary school renovations. Students were thrilled to see their friends, teachers were in awe with their new and improved facilities, and parents relaxed knowing that their children would be spending time in a space that provides an inspiring experience.
For the past 20 years, MSA has worked closely with Great Oaks Career Campus through renovations, upgrades, and additions for all their locations; Laurel Oaks, Live Oaks, Scarlet Oaks, and Diamond Oaks. Great Oaks’ unique approach to education trends away from traditional programs and focuses on specific trades. They offer classes such as construction, agriculture programs, biodiversity, exercise science, early childhood education, and more.
To accommodate the variety of classes, MSA created specialized Skills Labs and Soft Labs. Skills Labs require high bay labs to best accommodate bigger technology, resources, and processes. These labs are supported by related rooms, locker rooms, and other support spaces. An example of classes that need this type of lab is the automotive program. This lab has vehicles lifts and space to accommodate 8-12 vehicles. The vehicle lifts need extra height and floor room for students to receive the best functional learning experience.
Soft Labs cater to programs such as health technologies, digital programs, early childhood education and exercise science. These programs require a classroom-type environment. Unlike the Skills Labs space, Soft Labs are in smaller spaces and require less technology for their learning processes. Great Oaks offers a dental hygiene program where the classroom and technology is designed like a real dental office. This environment brings opportunities for students to practice their skills and get familiar in a dental office space. These classes can accommodate up to 30 students to receive a true hands-on experience.
MSA improved Great Oaks career campuses’ path of circulation. With over 170 students attending Great Oaks and with different career classes, programming and planning was essential.
MSA is proud to bring these milestones into fruition for our educational institutions. Indian Hill Exempted Village School District start their new year with more renovations and additions to come, and current spaces to enjoy and inspire. Great Oaks Career Campuses continues to seek new pathways, and more opportunities for their students. We look forward to future opportunities, and other ways we can support our future leaders.