Learning to Live Again Refugee Center

Jamie Gross


Degree(s): BS, Retail and Entrepeneurship, University of Wisconsin

This community center provides a place for refugees and local residents alike to learn, collaborate, heal and grow. Administration, education and gathering spaces ease the transition into an unfamiliar society, creating a sense of comfort for people who need and deserve a welcoming community.

        The suffering by refugees guided the creation of a space that creates comfort, safety, and community in an unfamiliar place. The goal is to create a center that fosters collaboration and familiarizes refugees to the community. The essential concept of the design is continuous learning, as research maintains that education most effectively instills confidence in refugees.

          The entire space is designed to encourage meeting and learning; the various spaces throughout the center can be used as interchangeable lecture / gathering space. It creates a sense of comfort by empowering the community to build and change their own space, using current education techniques as inspiration to create a game in which the community can “build” a gathering space, which structurally produces a flow from informal to formal seating and efficiently shows the circulation of the space entirely. Stackable metal mesh boxes, coated in rubber, are strong enough to stand on their own and flexible enough to rearrange the space.

          Faculty for the project:Sandra Arndt