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Welcome to the Department of Landscape Architecture

Since 1904, the Department of Landscape Architecture at Cornell University has challenged students to become responsible, creative designers and to develop innovative, just, and sustainable site appropriate responses to critical issues affecting the planet and its inhabitants. The field of landscape architecture is rapidly evolving to address crucial issues of global societal interest. Our department is adapting to meet these challenges through a continued emphasis on the agency of design. The program’s rich history and legacy of diversity and innovation form the foundation on which we continue to build the notion of landscape as grounding for a democratic society. Landscape architecture today intervenes in myriad contexts and landscape types, for multiple constituencies, and at a broad array of scales from infrastructural landscapes to gardens; the department will continue to immerse students in all facets of the field while providing them with the technical skills and acumen to realize their visions. The Department of Landscape Architecture prepares graduates to become design leaders in the field who will direct teams of experts as they deal with issues of infrastructure, water management, sea level rise, flooding, cultural heritage, and environmental justice.

Students working in the studio

Faculty are leading by example with innovative teaching methods and new collaborations across disciplines. Students then bring this knowledge and skill to their future careers as they help to expand the scope and significance of the profession. The department continues to expose students to precedent quality work through the lecture series, travel, and study abroad. The department is working to enhance the art and science of making through a long-term plan to expand capabilities of the tools and machines that facilitate hydraulic simulation, fabrication, parametric modeling, and drawing. The program’s reliance on real world design studio projects allows students to interact with communities as they work together to provide guidance in resolving the conflict between human habitation and ecological forces. Landscape architecture is the ideal fusion of techne and poesis, where creative visions become reality through the ability to thoughtfully craft the final product whether it is at the scale of site, city, or region. The goal is to continue to provide an educational environment conducive to the creation of this fusion.

The aim of the Department of Landscape Architecture at Cornell University is to provide graduates of the program with the necessary skills and expertise that will allow them to flourish in successful careers and become leaders in the field. The faculty brings varied perspectives, credentials, and experience to their teaching, research, creative activity, and mentoring, all of which are intended to inspire and motivate students to succeed.