Last summer, while Julie Stevens’ students built outdoor classrooms as part of the Iowa Correctional Institution for Women’s $68 million modernization and expansion, they noticed a daily occurrence that inspired their project for this year.
“During shift changes, the correctional officers stood in the parking lot next to their cars, talking to each other about their shifts,” said Stevens, assistant professor of landscape architecture. “They’d stand there for 45 minutes just to decompress and chat—so they wouldn’t have to take the day’s stressors home with them.”
So, this summer, Stevens and nine landscape architecture students designed and built an outdoor decompression area specifically for correctional officers and staff. Read more here.