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A Career as a Landscape Architect

Landscape architecture is a profession that ties together built, human-made structures and the natural environment. A landscape architect must consider not only what is best for the clients and users of a site, but also what is best for the environment. Humans have a large impact on the earth, and in many cases, this impact has been negative. Good design tries to consider what is good for the environment, in many ways trying to preserve and in some cases heal it, while creating designs that provide for the public's health, safety and welfare.

At ESF, we combine the issues of nature, craft, art, technology, science, and professionalism into a program that is designed to help prepare you for a career in the field of landscape architecture. The fact that these issues are broad in scope mirrors the profession of landscape architecture. We give you the framework which allows you to discover your own unique interest within the field, and will guide you to help you achieve your goals.

  • Nature
    The practice of Landscape Architecture is deeply dependent upon both an understanding of, and sensitivity for nature and ecology. Landscape architects today are poised as leaders in a world faced with environmental challenges of great complexity and scope, locally, nationally, and internationally.
  • Craft
    Landscape Architecture is a profession that is, even in a modern world, dedicated to the preservation and promotion of a tradition of craftsmanship. As a discipline engaged in creating the built environment, this craft is embodied in the process of envisioning new forms and places, and skillfully communicating these ideas to client, public, and builder.
  • Art
    Landscape Architecture is one of the oldest of the visual arts, with its roots nearly as old as human nature. It is based upon the fundamental human desire to shape the environments we inhabit -- from gardens to parks, to homes or the places we work, or even to the grander scale of the communities and regions we live in.
  • Technology
    Computer technology provides a growing number of landscape architects with new tools for understanding, visualizing, and predicting change in complex natural and built environments. Landscape Architects are leaders in the application of a variety of related emerging technologies, including Geographic Information Systems, Computer Aided Design, Digital Photography and Visual Simulation.
  • Culture
    Just as an understanding of nature is important to the landscape architect, understanding the people for which designed environments are intended is every bit as critical. In a world which is rapidly evolving toward a global economy, cultural awareness is even more significant as a factor in successful design.
  • Professionalism
    Landscape Architecture is a licensed profession serving the public in a variety of roles, including services such as site design and planning, urban design, community design, city planning, environmental planning and restoration, historic preservation planning, and a multitude of specialty services in both private firms and public agencies.


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State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry
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