SPOKANE, Wash. — Forster Ndubisi, first director of the Interdisciplinary Design Institute and professor of landscape architecture at Washington State University Spokane, has accepted a position at Texas A&M University as chair of its Department of Landscape Architecture and Urban Planning.

As the first director of the institute, Ndubisi led development and direction of the mission, which emphasized the examination of real-world problems within an interdisciplinary context, scholarly and creative achievement by faculty and students and service to the larger community.

During his tenure as director, the institute added four new graduate degrees, including a Master of Arts in interior design, Master of Science in architecture with design theory and design-build management tracks, Master of Science in landscape architecture and a Doctorate of Design (DDes). The DDes is only the second such program in the nation.

The design institute also created the annual Community Design and Construction Charrette under the direction of David Wang, associate professor of architecture. The teaching approach emphasizes real-world applications of design solutions through the charrette and through studio class projects, including early conceptual work on the University District development around WSU Spokane’s Riverpoint campus. Faculty and students win regional, national and international design awards each year for their work.

Ndubisi’s book “Ecological Planning: A Historical and Comparative Synthesis” (Johns Hopkins Press, 2002) won the only ASLA (American Society of Landscape Architects) Honor Award for research given in 1999, and a Certificate of Merit Award from the Washington chapter of the ASLA in the “Research and Communication” category (2003).

Prior to coming to WSU, Ndubisi was an associate professor in the School of Environmental Design and the Institute of Community and Area Development at the University of Georgia. He received a doctoral degree in regional planning and resource development from the University of Waterloo in Ontario, Canada.

The Interdisciplinary Design Institute at WSU Spokane advances knowledge to enhance the quality of people’s lives in the built and natural environment through interdisciplinary instruction, research and community service in design and construction. Students in architecture, interior design, landscape architecture, construction management and design-build management study at the institute.

Web sites:
Interdisciplinary Design Institute: www.idi.spokane.wsu.edu
WSU Spokane: www.spokane.wsu.edu
News release on Doctor of Design degree: http://wsunews.wsu.edu/detail.asp?StoryID=4619