Erin Gallo

Artist Statement

Erin is a budding designer who seeks to beautifully combine the conceptual aspects of design with the practical. For her, the most important component of a design is the people who will inhabit it. Her main goal is always to keep the user at the center of a project, ensuring that their space is as functional, enjoyable, and aesthetically appealing as possible. Erin is fascinated by the ability for interiors to bring people together and loves to explore the ways human beings have congregated in the built environment since the dawn of mankind. As a former athlete, she is also interested in discovering how architecture supports the practice of sports and helps people to come together across various cultures. The spirit and beauty of the interior will always inspire her to creativity and dedication to service in her work. 

Thesis Statement

United States middle schoolers are known to experience restriction of their individuality and freedom at a time when self-expression becomes highly valuable. Middle school is also shown by organizations including the American Psychological Association to be a harsher learning environment compared with elementary school. The current learning model is fairly outdated but provides teachers with the greatest amount of control within classrooms, which is necessary as class sizes continue to increase. By studying the programmatic components, architecture, and design of schools that utilize alternative teaching pedagogies, a new model for learning and design can be implemented in traditional schools. Research shows that designing for the implementation of both text-based and experiential-based learning styles will improve students’ motivation and desire to learn. Designing traditional schools for flexibility, variety, and small grouping will finally push public schooling into the twenty-first century. Overall, designing public middle schools to provide students with more freedom and opportunity for self-expression will contribute to increased motivation and desire to learn.