The Faculty of Civil and Industrial Engineering is located in the area where the old convent of San Lorenzo in Panisperna was built. The convent was built on the ruins of the Domus Aurea, which was emperor Nero’s palace, and which is now the church of St. Peter in Chains.
The Faculty is built around one of the most beautiful cloisters of Renaissance architecture in Rome, which is attributed to Giuliano da Sangallo. Today it is the symbol of the Faculty itself.
Under the courtyard paving there is a beautiful medieval cistern that is the size of a cube of about nine meters per side, which is identifies today by a thin line of stone sunken among the river stones, which is typical of Lombard architecture.
From the four corners of the courtyard, where the rainwater downpipes were, four channels converged towards the centre. These channels reached the four manhole covers, the four white discs at the corners of the perimeter, through which the run off could descend in many small spaces obtained between the vault of the cistern and the cloister floor; here there were layers of coal and gravel destined to filter the rainwater that was then released into the cistern by four stone spouts.
The large cube of the cistern was actually divided into two parts thanks to a cylinder that is approximately as wide as the octagon drawn on the floor around the well head; the connection between the two spaces was ensured by two stone slabs with five holes that were arranged in a quincunx form, thanks to which the water passed through to the inner cistern, while leaving any possible sediments in the external area.
The Presidency of the Faculty, some classrooms and study rooms of different Departments face the cloister. In addition to being used for numerous educational activities (graduation exams, seminars, institutional meetings), they host countless scientific and artistic events and national and international conferences.
The YMSE logo
(Photo credits: Stefania Sepulcri - Ufficio Stampa e Comunicazione)
Minerva, the Roman goddess of wisdom and war, is one of the main symbols of Sapienza University of Rome.
A huge statue portraying the goddess can be found in the main Sapienza Campus, the so-called Città Universitaria, which was designed by architect Marcello Piacentini and inaugurated in 1935.
The Minerva bronze statue was built by artist Arturo Martini and it towers over a pool of water that stands in front of the University’s administrative building.
Minerva was chosen as the YMSE 2019 Workshop logo because of what she represents: wisdom and knowledge, in terms both of what the Italian word Sapienza means and of what this Workshop aims to reach by connecting young researchers together.
There is a curious legend about the Minerva statue: students that dare to look her in her eyes are going to fail their next exam!