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Photo Essay: Inside the College of Engineering and Architecture

Witness the dedication of students who frequent the Howard H. Mackey Building, where innovation meets community on Howard University’s campus.

The Howard H. Mackey Building, half of them home to the College of Engineering and Architecture is one of the first campus structures visitors see. (Tionne Thornton/The Hilltop)

The College of Engineering and Architecture (CEA) at Howard University serves as a second home to many of its students. 

Select students within the school are not allowed to have a minor, so they spend nearly all of their time inside the Howard H. Mackey Building. As students of CEA, they have 24/7 access to, working on their architecture, computer science and engineering assignments. 

The walls are covered with floor plans and models dot the halls, alongside high-tech equipment such as 3D printers and a laser cutter students use to design. The school also has a strong sense of community, evident in the exchanges between students and professors who often speak to each other in the halls. 

“This is because our classes are quite small, ranging from 10 to 15 students at a time,” said third-year architecture major, Jenna Adjei. 

However, the interior of Howard’s College of Engineering and Architecture remains a mystery to those not enrolled in one of Howard’s undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral programs. 

Offering a glimpse behind its doors, Hilltop photographer Tionne Thornton took a trip to the building students refer to as “Mackey,” to reveal the inside of Howard’s College of Engineering and Architecture.

A professor engages in a group discussion about the students’ model. (Tionne Thornton/The Hilltop)
A student prepares to use the laser cutter. (Tionne Thornton/The Hilltop)
Third-year architecture major Jenna Adjei sketches a model of a home before making a digital version. (Tionne Thornton/The Hilltop)
Third-year architecture major Amya Brown builds a digital model of her project. (Tionne Thornton/The Hilltop)
The Mackey Auditorium where many lectures are held sits empty in between classes. (Tionne Thornton/The Hilltop)
Students’ floor plans decorate the halls, giving insight into what they are working on. (Tionne Thornton/The Hilltop)
A model made from glue, cardboard and other materials. (Tionne Thornton/The Hilltop)
Third-year architecture major Jenna Adjei working on a presentation on “trauma-informed design,” an architectural approach designed to provide safe and calm environments. (Tionne Thornton/The Hilltop).
Materials students use for models are splayed out on a table in the Howard H. Mackey Building. (Tionne Thornton/The Hilltop)
A “Mackey” classroom where students discuss their work in groups. (Tionne Thornton/The Hilltop)

Copy edited by D’ara Campbell

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