"Free as air and water"

For more than a century Cooper Union was unique among American design schools in offering an education that was not only first-rate but also tuition-free. In recent years it’s fought a dramatic battle to remain true to its democratic ideals and egalitarian mission.

Cooper Union was long unique among U.S. design schools in offering an education that was not only first-rate but tuition-free. It’s fighting hard to remain true to its egalitarian mission.

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  • Barbara Penner
  • Simon Sadler

Barbara Penner

Barbara Penner is a columnist for Places. She is Professor of Architectural Humanities at the Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL.

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Gabrielle Esperdy

Gabrielle Esperdy is a columnist for Places. She is associate professor of architecture at the New Jersey Institute of Technology.

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David Heymann

David Heymann is a columnist for Places. He is an architect, and the Harwell Hamilton Harris Regents Professor in Architecture at the University of Texas, Austin.

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Simon Sadler

Simon Sadler is a columnist for Places. He teaches the history and theory of architecture, design, and urbanism across several programs at the University of California, Davis, where he is a professor in the Department of Design.

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