Department of Design and Construction311Search all websites

July 8, 2016

Fifty Bronx Middle School Students Study Ancient Construction as Part of the New York City Department of Design and Construction’s Summer Enrichment Program

Students Focus on Architecture and Design at the Metropolitan Museum of Art

Students sit on the floor with their backs to the camera, watching a Met museum docent speak.
Bronx middle school students learn about historical architecture and design at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Ian Michaels
Executive Director of Public Information

New York, NY—Approximately 50 public middle school students from District 9 in the Bronx visited the Metropolitan Museum of Art (MET) today to study the relationships between architecture, design and visual art in ancient construction. Over the course of the summer they will learn about the built environment from ancient time to the present. The students are part of the New York City Department of Design and Construction’s Middle School Summer Enrichment Program under DDC STEAM, started in 2014 to establish a diverse and inclusive pipeline for New York City's youth to engage in the architecture, construction, and engineering industries.

The tour was based on a curriculum developed by DDC STEAM and was customized by MET educators to focus on the relationships between architecture, design, and visual art. Students visited the MET’s Ancient Assyrian Palace and Ming Dynasty Chinese Courtyard, with an emphasis on observational sketching and evidence-based reasoning. The students studied and sketched the structures as examples of what can be included in the “Future City” projects they will complete by the end of the DDC summer enrichment program.

“DDC’s summer curriculum introduces fun, engaging hands-on activities related to the built environment, taking students on a journey from ancient time to the 21st century history of building structures,” said DDC Commissioner Feniosky Peña-Mora. “Our goal is to expose students to the world of the built environment and provide them with the tools and framework to not only understands how things work, but also how best to make them work to the benefit of our city and the larger society.”

“The DDC summer middle school curriculum introduces new vocabulary, conducts various experiments, and applies critical problem-solving skills while promoting collaborative work,” said DDC Community Partnerships & STEAM Initiatives Deputy Commissioner Lee Llambelis. “It enhances understanding of science, technology, engineering, architecture and math in an entertaining way, helping to keep kids engaged in learning in the months when they’re out of school.”

The MET trip was the first of three travel days in the middle school summer program. Students will visit the Museum of the City of New York on July 15, and Google’s offices and the NY Hall of Science on July 22. A closing ceremony for the program will be held on July 29 at MS 22 in the Bronx.

DDC has partnered with Learning through an Expanded Arts Program (LeAp) for its middle school summer program. LeAp is funded by the NYC Department of Youth and Community Development (DYCD). DDC also works with the NYC Department of Education (DOE) and DYCD to facilitate a wide range of hands-on STEAM-related programs, all designed to increase early learning opportunities for underrepresented students to STEAM professions.

DDC STEAM is also hosting summer internship programs for New York City high school and college students. On Monday August 1st, all DDC middle school students, high school interns, and college interns will participate in a Community Service Day at J.H.S. 022 Jordan L. Mott in the South Bronx, gardening on school grounds, painting, and holding a food drive to help promote the health and progression of the community.

About the NYC Department of Design and Construction
The Department of Design and Construction is the City’s primary capital construction project manager. In supporting Mayor de Blasio’s lenses of growth, sustainability, resiliency, equity and healthy living, DDC provides communities with new or renovated public buildings such as such as firehouses, libraries, police precincts, new or upgraded roadways, sewers, water mains in all five boroughs. To manage this $10 billion portfolio, DDC partners with other City agencies, architects and consultants, whose experience bring efficient, innovative, and environmentally-conscious design and construction strategies to city projects. For more information, please visit