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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Tradition in miniature

Photo by Photo by Cassie Stricker

The Academic Building may soon become an official Lego set thanks to doctoral candidate Luke Lyons.

Luke Lyons, a doctoral student for the department of education, said he wanted to see the Academic Building more than just everyday when he walked through campus — he wanted to have a piece of it at home.
With that desire in mind, Lyons built a Lego model of the Academic Building over a two year period with over 3,000 pieces of Legos.
Now Lyons is gaining support to have his miniature Acadmeic Building become an official Lego set. The university model needs 10,000 votes to get approved and at time of press has 1,027 votes. As of now he has 6 months to reach 5,000 votes. If he hits that goal, his time frame to reach the 10,000 votes will be extended.
If the set reaches its goal, it will be reviewed by the Lego Review Board, consisting of set designers and marketing representatives, who will evaluate the project and then hand pick certain designs to be made into official sets.
In 2015, Lyons created a Lego model of the 1930 Navasota High School, which now serves as the administration building of the district where he once taught high school biology. Now his second custom design is the Academic Building.
“I just decided that I wanted to do something A&M,” Lyons said. “Everyday I would walk past the Academic Building and I just decided ‘Yup, I’m gonna build that.’ It is the center of campus. It is iconic.”
Building things with Legos has been a hobby for Lyons since he was a child and it continued to grow through the years.
Kenneth Flemings, doctoral student in the College of Education and Human Development as well as a friend and colleague of Lyons, said that even as an undergrad Lyons was part of the 12th Man Student Foundation and knew everything about the Academic Building, which sparked his desire to make another building of Legos.
“He would take [prospective students] out and give them a campus tour of all the facilities and tell them all the stories and legends and traditions,” Fleming said. “He became the go to guy for it. Then he kind of got an itch for building another building and he knew a lot of the history behind the Academic Building.”
Maria Lyons, wife of Luke Lyons and academic advisor for the College of Biomedical Engineering, said making Legos is Luke Lyons’ outlet from school.
“At the end of the day, it is one of those things that it’s just a hobby,” Maria Lyons said. “He is a Ph.D. student and it’s one of those that he needs as an escape from his writing.”
This design features everything from the Liberty Bell to the university seal. Every intricate detail that is etched in the Academic Building is seen in this design. Creating this type of model allows an escape from school work, while still keeping your mind active, according to Luke Lyons.
“This was my stress relief from my studies,” Luke Lyons said. “Lego was kind of like my creative escape so my mind stayed active and a lot of times during this process was when I would get an idea for a research project I wanted to attempt, a lesson that I wanted to attempt, a lesson that I wanted to present in class, or a way to better frame my writing, as well.”
Having an escape, whether that is a social escape, religious escape, a hobby escape, friends, or anything else, it has to be something that gives a break because otherwise there is the possibility of getting burnt out are going to physically, emotionally or mentally, according to Maria Lyons.
The Lyons said they have received positive feedback about the Academic Building Lego set.
“I’d love the support and with so many of us graduating from Texas A&M every year, I wanted to find my own unique way of bringing A&M home with me and also in a way that could potentially give back to the university,” Luke Lyons said.

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