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University of Mary Washington - Dahlgren Center for Education & Research

Centralizing distance learning programs

King George, Virginia

The University of Mary Washington (UMW) Dahlgren Campus serves as an anchor for development of educational and research partnerships between Naval Support Facility (NSF) Dahlgren, the business community and state higher education institutions. By locating the campus just outside NSF Dahlgren, academic programs will be available not only to those with access to the base, but also to the region’s residents interested in continuing education.

The Dahlgren Campus is unique among UMW’s buildings in that the primary educational mission is not achieved through instruction provided by the university, but by providing a home for distance learning from many other institutions. The unique design challenge was to create an engaging environment for students that are largely absent of faculty. By using the module concept, we created a space with interspersed functions that encourage interaction among the building’s occupants. A large open media center connects the modules and provides primary circulation, which weaves through the spaces. It is the activity hub and houses group study areas, breakout areas, and quiet study spaces.

The building is environmentally friendly with features such as a green roof and geothermal heating and cooling. 

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