Cypress College Veterans Resource Center

Cypress, California

The Veterans Resource Center (VRC) and Student Activities Center (SAC) project consolidates student organizations, support programs, recreation and a Veterans Memorial into a unified complex of cultural significance. The project addressed the unique program needs and acknowledged the existing site conditions of building structure, major campus utilities, and landscape. Cypress College’s rich architectural heritage of late 1960’s brutalism and modernist style informed the design response by acknowledging human scale and the history of the campus, while looking forward with fresh ideas.

For the VRC, landscape buffers, walls and a custom glass frit pattern create a private and sensitive atmosphere as a safe space for student veterans. The room between the VRC and SAC joins the old and the new, and not only structurally perform as a bridge, but programmatically serves as a shared meeting space used by both constituents – a true metaphor for community building. The VRC provides the much need resources and services to help transition our student veterans back to civilian life through higher education. While the project is funded by state funds and philanthropic community contributions, elements of the memorial and plaza design such as the flags, trees, benches, lights and tributes provide additional donor opportunities for community involvement and meaningful interaction.

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