Milan Center for Innovative Studies

Milan, Michigan

  • FIRM

    Fanning Howey


    Milan Area Schools

  • AREA

    23,000 sq.ft.





It isn't every day that you learn how to build a solar-powered boat. But for students at the new Milan Center for Innovative Studies (MCIS), this is just one in a series of project-based learning opportunities meant to prepare them for the job market or higher education.


A 23,000-square-foot addition to an existing high school, MCIS is ADDITIONAL INFORMATIONCAPACITY180COST PER SQ FT$260.00FEATURED IN2014 Architectural Portfolio to support the district’s new project-based learning curriculum for high school seniors. An open commons connects specialty labs and support areas that serve multiple programs. Mobile furniture and an open arrangement of space allows the environment to take on whatever form is needed. A variety of gathering areas, ranging from the central grand stair to informal soft seating areas, encourage spontaneous collaboration. A robust technology infrastructure allows learning to occur primarily through school-provided laptops and tablets.


MCIS has received rave reviews from staff members, as well as representatives from other school districts. “Seeing the students come in every morning, watching the magic happen—this is Disneyland for me,” says MCIS Director Kevin Upton.