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Gateway students lend expertise to preschool design project at UC

Gateway Community & Technical College Early Childhood Education Program students teamed up with University of Cincinnati (UC) architecture students to design a preschool.

Tammy Bleha, Danielle Carrothers, Rhonda Schneider and Tami Chapman, Gateway Interdisciplinary Early Childhood Education (IECB) students, have been involved in a semester-long collaboration with UC Design, Architecture, Art, Planning DAAP graduate students.  Gateway students served as expert advisors for architecture teams that were designing an ideal preschool. Each team had a different curriculum approach for their school: Montessori, High Scope, Nature and Reggio. Gateway students researched each of the methods to help translate the approach into an architectural design. 

Students made final presentations of "The Spatial Implications of Early Childhood Pedagogies" to an audience of community members and experts at UC.

“The final projects were absolutely outstanding,” said Sarah Smith, Gateway IECB instructor.  “I can hardly describe how cool this project has been.  They stood up there and shined with little difference between the graduate students and our students.” 

“This project of four interdisciplinary teams of architecture and education students has been an enormous learning experience for all of us,” said John Noble, UC DAAP adjunct assistant professor.  “We are very proud of the results.”

Noble and colleague Ed Melvin sought students with real world preschool experience, and the Gateway students were perfect for the job. Rhonda Schneider has been a preschool teacher for twenty-seven years. Schneider reported she “learned so much in this project!” 

“Gateway seeks opportunities and partnerships such as this to give our student real world experiences that grow their talents and contribute to our entire community,” said Dr. Fernando Figueroa, Gateway Community & Technical College president. “We are very proud of our students and faculty for their great work on this project.”

If you would like to speak to someone about the Early Childhood Program at Gateway, contact Sarah.Smith@kctcs.edu.