Building Better Schools That Shape the Future of Learning

February 7, 2024

Matt Hansen, an architect based in Pittsburgh, discusses the challenges and opportunities in the education sector in Western Pennsylvania. He shares his background in architecture and how he transitioned to focusing on educational design. Matt highlights the funding shortage and the need for school renovations and replacements in the region. He also discusses the importance of incorporating innovative design concepts, such as small learning communities and outdoor spaces, into school projects. Matt emphasizes the value of collaboration between architects and educators to create effective learning environments. The conversation covers the origins of the podcast and the motivation behind it. It also explores the involvement of the podcast in the A4LE community and the unique position it holds. The conversation concludes with closing remarks and a commitment to driving change in education.

  • The education sector in Western Pennsylvania faces challenges due to funding shortages and outdated school facilities.
  • Innovative design concepts, such as small learning communities and outdoor spaces, can enhance the learning experience.
  • Collaboration between architects and educators is crucial to create effective and inspiring learning environments.
  • Furniture plays a significant role in educational spaces and should be carefully considered to support learning and engagement. The podcast started as a way to continue conversations with educators and share practical experiences.
  • The podcast became involved with A4LE as a way to support the community and have meaningful conversations.
  • The podcast's unique position allows for discussions with architects and interior designers who deeply care about education.

Matt joined IKM in 2005 and has spearheaded the firm’s efforts in growing its K-12 education portfolio. He has successfully managed over $230 million of project cost in the market sector. As the Educational Practice Leader, Mr. Hansen is responsible for leading and facilitating IKM's planning and visioning process and helping clients research and identify their facility needs. Matt is a gifted designer who employs an energetic, collaborative approach that places research-driven concepts at the forefront of his work.

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LearningSCAPES 2024


October 16-19, 2024
Portland, OR