Senator Spotlight February 2023

NAME: Elena Rocchi

What unit do you represent? 

The Design School, Architecture Program, Tempe Campus.

How many years have you served in the Senate?

I have served for 1.5 years, starting in the fall semester of 2021.

How many years have you been employed at ASU?

Ten years

What other institutions have you taught at before coming to ASU?

European Institute of Design, Barcelona; ESARC-UIC, School of Architecture, Barcelona; ETSAB, School of Architecture, Barcelona.

What is your research and/or creative activities focus? 

Design from Body To Field; Architecture as the interface between humans and nature, with a focus on writing (theory), drawing (design), and History of Architecture; Biomimicry; History of Roman Architecture; Drawing on Origin; Analog + Digital; Urban Scenography; Cinema and the City; The Image of Rome; Post-production of ideas; Space Architecture.

Why did you decide to get involved with the Senate?

I became a Senator as I felt a responsibility to actively participate in the academic policy, the processes, and the structure of our shared governance. As an architect interested in the polis (the city), I appreciate having the opportunity to give voice to architecture, design, and my unit, The Design School, when shaping the future of our university's future.

Describe what you have learned (or hope to learn) during your time in the Senate?

Through a variety of speakers, on the one hand, I have learned more about our community by observing and appreciating the extraordinary work and dedication of our committee chairs and Senators who served on committees and continued to work despite the coronavirus pandemic challenges. On the other hand, I acknowledged our faculty-led effort to promote a learning environment at ASU to strengthen civil discourse and respect for differences.

What committees have you participated in or would like to participate in, and what were you able to (or hope to) accomplish? 

In Fall 21, I joined the Research and Creative Activities Committee, whose purpose and function are to serve in an advisory capacity on research and creative activities. For example, we have looked at the use of illegally obtained data in research and created a flow chart to show when people could use that data. In addition, I recently joined the Digitally Enhanced Teaching and Learning Ad Hoc Committee, an ASU Online and UTO vehicle that reviews and advises on technology matters that affect faculty and students.

What would you say to your peers who might be considering accepting a nomination or nominating himself or herself for a position in the University Senate?

To serve on the Senate allows one to contribute to the challenges we face as a Public university in promoting the ideals and the practice of reason and civil discourse while protecting the rights of free speech. The Senate is a place and a medium to gain a deep understanding of our charter: every visit and every intervention during the Senate highlights the effort of every single ASU unit to commit to and support students and programs and our compromise to better prepare our students to participate fully in a robust constitutional democracy.