Elizabeth O'Donnell

Acting Dean, Professor, Proportional-Time Faculty

Elizabeth O’Donnell served as Associate Dean for the School of Architecture for eleven years. She is currently the Acting Dean. A member of the faculty since 1984, Professor O’Donnell has taught ARCH 132 Structures II (as part of the structures sequence with Professor Emeritus Ysrael Seinuk), the project based course ARCH 185 Crossings, ARCH 131 Design III as part of the studio team, and currently teaches ARCH 122 Structures I.  She has recently presented at the 2012 Imagining America National Conference in New York, the 2012 World Energy Forum in Dubai, the 2012 Deans’ Roundtable at the Center for Architecture New York, was a panelist on the Town and Gown symposium “Next Steps for the City’s Design-Related Academic Institutions”, served as liaison for the New Museum’s Ideas City festivals in 2011 and 2013, and she was rapporteur for the 2010 Dubai Forum. 

She produces and co-edits the school’s annual newsletter and was a member of the president’s Revenue Generating Task force in 2011. She frequently serves on design reviews, most recently at the School of Architecture at City College, Barnard College and Pratt Institute. In practice she has completed numerous projects in New York City including offices for non-profit foundations, schools, loft residences, and building additions, with an emphasis on the adaptive reuse of existing buildings and sites. She has served as consultant to artists including Yoko Ono and Tadashi Kawamata for site-specific projects. Her work has been published by Bauwelt, Interior Design Magazine, Conran’s Design Book, Occulus, the New York Times and the Architectural League. Recognition includes an award for Design Excellence from the NYC Chapter of the American Institute of Architects and an award for Design Distinction from International Design magazine.

O'Donnell is on the advisory board of the design and construction web venture “Sweeten”, and is a member of the Zoning Commission for the Town of Taghkanic, New York that is rewriting its Zoning Code to foster a rural economy and protect natural resources.

She graduated from The Irwin S. Chanin School of Architecture of The Cooper Union after studying at the University of Minnesota and Antioch College and will complete a Master of Education at the City University of New York in 2014.

 

Projects & Links

  • 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.