Message from Outgoing Director Jill Stoner

Dear Students, Faculty and Staff, Alumni and Friends,


It has been an honour to serve as Director of the Azrieli School of Architecture and Urbanism. I came to the school in 2015, excited by the promise and potential of a strong and dedicated faculty, and exceptionally motivated students. As I came to better know your intellectually and ethically motivated school culture, grounded in a spirit of teamwork and dedication to increasing the diversity of our academic community, my expectations were surpassed. The school’s sincere commitment to shaping a more just built environment, and bravely interrogating architecture’s role in an increasingly complex world, has been and will continue to be inspiring.  


This faculty is the best there is anywhere. Many of you have been partners in shaping new academic and extracurricular initiatives, and you have all consistently raised the bar to promote academic excellence. Over these years, it has been a pleasure to expand the school’s professoriate with a series of additional hires that have introduced emerging research areas and innovative approaches to architectural pedagogy. Three new colleagues will now join the faculty for the next academic year.


Students, you have always delighted and amazed me. You have made your voices heard beyond the walls of our school. Through your work, you are contributing important ideas to cities and communities across the globe, and participating in debates that address the wicked problems of our time. Your commitment to a more justly constructed landscape, and to collaboration rather than competition, gives me confidence that you will lead the enterprise of architecture forward with integrity, vision and heart.  


My gratitude goes to all our staff members, for the countless ways in which you have worked with the faculty, students and me to enhance the mission of the school. Your valuable contribution to a positive climate and a rewarding experience for our students too often goes unsung.


To our growing community of alumni: I have valued your support for projects that have made our school ever stronger. You have generated valuable ideas for how to better foster connections between yourselves and our current students, and brought new partnerships to the school. Your growing community now includes the proud graduating class of 2021.


My final year as Director has coincided with an emotional and challenging time, and together we navigated the rough patches and celebrated the high moments. For me, this shared experience added to the many rewards of my tenure. For those who have become friends and collaborators, I look forward to continuing our conversations and work through times ahead. I extend best wishes to Interim Director Federica Goffi, and thank you all for the privilege of guiding this wonderful school.


Warmest wishes,