Seeking to elevate worldwide wellness, Emory University’s Rollins School of Public Health displays the accomplishments of its learners and researchers in a new facility dedicated to becoming the global destination for public health expertise. Showcasing their initiatives with global partners, students and faculty engage with the broader community in a variety of settings. A green belt activating the street edge, gardens that soften and enrich the campus experience and open collaboration areas energizing the building’s “social edge” all transform the tight site into a world stage, embracing the core of their culture: the health and wellbeing of our communities.
Emory’s top-tier Rollins School of Public Health (RSPH) was housed in two interconnected buildings -Grace Crum Rollins (GCR) and the Claudia Nance Rollins (CNR) Building. In 2008 SLAM designed the Claudia Nance Rollins Building along with renovations to the original GCR Building. Ten years later the school’s growth had continued to outpace the capacity of GCR and CNR and the University re-engaged with SLAM to design the R. Randall Rollins Building, the third and largest addition, intended to complete the Rollins complex.
From it’s earliest stages, the project was envisioned as the completion of a collection of buildings meant to connect people to place and serve as a global destination.
Breaking the traditional bounds of silo based pedagogies, the school partnered with the university to provide collaboration space dedicated to open usage by all university students regardless of school association. This social initiative creates opportunities for cross pollination and ultimately yields more well informed solutions campus wide.
A physical reflection of the school’s brand and global reach, Pulse is a highly dynamic and interactive experience of digital displays and motion-triggered lighting sequences that engage students, staff and visitors. Used as a storytelling tool, the customized, digital exhibit showcases the important work of the school, as well as highlights the legacy of the school’s main benefactor, the Rollins family. Satellite images of Earth serve as the backdrop to Pulse and reinforce a connection to nature and reflect the global impact; past, present, and future of the school and university.
Throughout the complex, connections to nature promote wellness by bringing a sense of warmth and calm to an urban edge campus environment. Whether inside or outside, a number of opportunities are available to find oneself within a nurturing space. Representing a variety of scales, these spaces take shape as group learning, individual study, or repose based social interaction.
A departure from conventional faculty departmental space planning, private offices were strategically located away from the windows to provide access to daylight and views for building occupants.
Active-learning classrooms have exterior views to enhance performance, retention, and well-being. These spaces are favorites among the student body who make great use of the flexibility of furnishings to recreate student lounge environments outside of scheduled classroom usage.