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May 12, 2021 Young Named Dean of the College of Architecture and Design

headshot of Jason Young

The College of Architecture and Design is pleased to announce the appointment of Jason Young as the 12th dean of the college. On May 12, 2021, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Provost John Zomchick made the announcement, following a national search. Young will assume the post on July 1, when Dean Scott Poole will step down to return to teaching.

“Jason will bring a compelling vision for design education, conviction of the important role to be played by design across the university, and a strong commitment to community engagement as he begins his tenure as the next dean of the College of Architecture and Design,” said Zomchick. “He enters that role, moreover, with broad support and deep familiarity with all of the college’s constituencies. I look forward to his leadership of the college as our university embarks on its new strategic vision.”

Since 2014, Young has served as professor and director of the college’s School of Architecture. During his tenure, the school has been nationally ranked numerous times and named a “Most Hired From” program by DesignIntelligence. Enrollment in the school has climbed to today’s largest class with the highest GPA, and over the past eight years, a record number of students and faculty in the school have earned the acclaimed Fulbright Award.

To improve the educational experience for students, Young collaborated with the School of Interior Architecture and School of Landscape Architecture to reimagine dual-degree programs that allow undergraduate students to earn master’s degrees through a unique integrated plan. He supported the overhaul of the school’s first-year curriculum led by faculty, work that was recognized with a 2019 national AIA Innovation Award as a model for other schools. Young’s vision for innovation also resulted in an elevation of computational design in the curriculum and robotics technology and faculty in the school.

In collaboration with Interior Architecture, Young developed the school’s first-ever study abroad program in Tokyo, and he brought the revered Aydelott Travel Award to the school for the benefit of students. He has increased student scholarships and champions the school’s Appalachia Studio, Haiti Studio and Lone Oaks Farm, advancing the university’s land-grant mission through curriculum and design/build.

“I am honored to be given the opportunity to lead the College of Architecture and Design as the next dean,” said Young. “I already know that creatives from our four schools have the capacity to further enrich communities by advancing the role design practices play in building more just and promising futures. I look forward to empowering and challenging the college to increase this capacity. Diverse conversations and collaborations give us a strong base from which to speculate, envision and lead. This can be true on our campus, in the state of Tennessee and within the southeast region. By setting a strong example in our own territory, I feel we can be, and should be a leader among design schools. I am excited to build on the momentum established by Dean Poole and would like to thank him for his leadership over the past 10 years,” he said.

In addition to his leadership as director, Young has more than 25 years of teaching experience and achieved numerous teaching accolades, including the 2013 Howard Friedman Visiting Associate Professor of Practice at the University of California, Berkeley, and visiting professor at the Schwerpunkt Holz in Murau, Austria.

His research focuses on contemporary conditions of American urbanism, and for his research, Young was named the 2012-2013 Helmet F. Stern Professor in the University of Michigan Institute for the Humanities.

Young is a licensed builder and was co-founder of a design/build practice and founder of an independent construction studio and design practice in Michigan. Work through his practice was recognized by ID Magazine’s Design Review, Wallpaper* magazine, Contract Magazine and a Michigan AIA Award.

Young holds a Master of Architecture from Rice University and a Bachelor of Science in Architecture from the Georgia Institute of Technology.

In August 2020, Scott Poole, current dean of the college, announced he was stepping down at the end of the 2020-2021 school year to return to teaching, after serving the college as dean for 10 years. He continues a successful 35-year career of teaching, professional practice, service and leadership that has been recognized with many accomplishments and accolades.

Founded in 1965, the College of Architecture and Design enriches quality of life in the region and world through transformational design education, a design/build program, key partnerships and award-winning facilities including the state-of-the-art Fab Lab.  The college is comprised of more than 675 undergraduate and graduate students in architecture, interior architecture, landscape architecture and graphic design.  Visit archdesign.utk.edu to learn more.