About

The mission of The Irwin S. Chanin School of Architecture is to provide for its students the finest professional education available within an intellectual environment that fosters and expands their creative capacities and sensibilities and establishes the foundation for a creative professional life. The school is committed to the belief that one of society’s prime responsibilities is toward learning and education in the deepest sense: that the exercise of individual creativity within a willing community is a profoundly social act. Fundamental to the mission of the school is the maintenance of an atmosphere in which freedom of thought and exploration can flourish, where students can explore and utilize their strengths and individual talents, interests and modes of working, to their highest potential.

  • Founded by inventor, industrialist and philanthropist Peter Cooper in 1859, The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art offers education in art, architecture and engineering, as well as courses in the humanities and social sciences.

  • “My feelings, my desires, my hopes, embrace humanity throughout the world,” Peter Cooper proclaimed in a speech in 1853. He looked forward to a time when, “knowledge shall cover the earth as waters cover the great deep.”

  • From its beginnings, Cooper Union was a unique institution, dedicated to founder Peter Cooper's proposition that education is the key not only to personal prosperity but to civic virtue and harmony.

  • Peter Cooper wanted his graduates to acquire the technical mastery and entrepreneurial skills, enrich their intellects and spark their creativity, and develop a sense of social justice that would translate into action.