News & Awards

Creating new parks in cities can be slow, expensive, and time-consuming. This new system lets neighbors quickly pick which elements they want, gets them delivered, and helps them install it themselves in a few days.

Jefferson’s Kimberlee Douglas has received the Community Service Award from the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA). The association recognized the University’s landscape architecture program director in part for her belief that all projects consider the social, historic and economic impacts along with the natural systems. 

With Park in a Truck program Jefferson looks to help transform underserved communities. Roughly 40,000 vacant lots dot Philadelphia’s 142 square miles, but Jefferson’s Kim Douglas prefers different adjectives to describe them. “They’re open and available lots,” stresses Douglas. “We don’t call them vacant.”

Part of how the refuge is ‘doing urban’ is extending nature out into the community as it invites the community in. Working with Kim Douglas, director of the landscape architecture program at Jefferson University, the John Heinz staff has developed a strategy of listening to what community members want and coming up with restoration projects that meet the needs of both human and pollinator neighbors. 

Kimberlee Douglas, director of the landscape architecture program at Thomas Jefferson University, said the new study provides concrete evidence for something people intuitively know: "We have an innate need for nature." From her experience building parks in Philadelphia's low-income neighborhoods, she's seen them provide benefits beyond mental health. They're great places for kids to explore, use creativity, and build social skills, she said. They encourage people to exercise more. "It gives communities a different way to think about themselves," Douglas said. "They can be proud of where they live."

Kimberlee Douglas, director of the University's landscape architecture program, earned first place at the Sustainable Business Network of Greater Philadelphia's Excellence in GSI Awards.

The University’s landscape architecture program won two major awards this fall. First, at the national American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) annual meeting, students and alumni earned first place in the popular Alumni Tailgate, topping 40 other schools, for best design. By showing their school spirit and winning the decorated space category, Jefferson (Philadelphia University + Thomas Jefferson University) will receive 15 student admission tickets for next year’s ASLA show in San Diego. Also during the meeting, attendees watched a video highlighting the University’s ACE Legacy project.

Kim Douglas received the Lindback Distinguished Teaching Award!

Some of the comments from the submitted nominating materials “Throughout the semester she not only encouraged us to do our best in school but also allowed us to realize how our designs should embody principles that positively affect the world at large. She always brought in critics that allowed our designs to grow in realistic but imaginary ways. Something even as simple as reminding us to acknowledge those who took time out of their schedule to talk to us by sending a simple thank you note or an email. These are things that are forgotten but appreciated. Kim was always someone that I greatly appreciated feedback from and even now outside of having her as a professor I seek.”

They go on to say, “Outside of school she encouraged us to participate in workshops that benefit us in our career as designers and furthers our design principles. It doesn’t matter if she’s my professor or not she constantly looks out for her past, present, and future students. For this, I thank her. She is someone who has worked hard to get where she is while also holding true to her values and her passions for the environment and social development which can be reflected thought the success of her students. Kim embodies those characteristics that leave her students more knowledgeable, confident, and inspired.”

Landscape Architecture Program Director Kim Douglas' firm Studio Gaea along with Salt Design Studio and Yerkes Associates won the Excellence in GSI Award in the category of Public Projects: Linwood Park. See more here .

Residents at the corner of Cecil Street and Kingsessing Avenue in the Kingsessing section of Philadelphia have something to smile about thanks to the combined efforts of faculty and students from Jefferson's Lab for Urban and Social Innovation (LUSI), the John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge and Audubon Pennsylvania.

Program Awards

2018-2019 LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE AWARDS

  • Olin Prize for Design + Scholarship ($500 check and certificate):
    Each year the landscape architecture faculty selects a graduating student that it feels is the “outstanding” student for that year. This year’s recipient is…
    • Victoria Hochuli
      Victoria has developed into a thoughtful designer who consistently exhibits enthusiasm and pride in her work. She consistenly goes the extra mile to research a topic, site or building, explores various design precedents to produce a thoughtful and sensitive design solution. Victoria has a bright and exciting future in the profession!
  • ASLA Awards (American Society of Landscape Architects Awards)                     Each year the landscape architecture faculty nominate up to two graduating students to compete for Honor and/or Merit Awards. A jury of practicing professionals are selected to review the “life time” work of the two students. After a formal presentation to the group, the jury makes its decision. This year the winners are...
    • Award of Honor: Rachel Meier                                                                    Rachel is an exceptionally bright, thoughtful, creative and dedicated student. Rachel was also named the 2019 Landscape Architecture Foundation Olmsted Student Scholar, which recognizes students with exceptional leadership potential to advance sustainable design and foster human and societal benefits.     
    • Award of Merit: Victoria Hochuli                                                                             Victoria is an outstanding student who also won the Olin Prize for design and scholarship! She is consistently on the Dean's list and also finds time to run Cross Country. She is good at whatever she takes on because of her versatility and collaborative nature. 

2017-18 LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE AWARDS

  • ASLA Awards (American Society of Landscape Architects Awards)                      Each year the landscape architecture faculty nominate up to two graduating students to compete for Honor and/or Merit Awards. A jury of practicing professionals are selected to review the “life time” work of the two students. After a formal presentation to the group, a decision is made to give either a merit or honor award to the competing students. This year the winners are...
    • Award of Honor: Evan McNaught                                                                        Evan was nominated for this honor due to his passion for the landscape and for people. He is a thoughtful designer, is proficient in numerous computer applications, is a team player and is highly regarded by the faculty and his classmates. He is an extremely valuable and strong student within our program and will be an excellent addition to the profession!
    • Award of Merit: Zachary Robertson                                                                    Zachary transferred from Architecture in his third year of his studies and has never looked back. It is very apparent that he has embraced the profession as his design solutions are always thoughtful and creative. He leaves no stone unturned in the search for solutions to his design problems! Zachary is also very involved in the University as he has served as a Resident Assistant and an Admissions Representative as well as the treasurer for the American Society of Landscape Architects student chapter. Zachary is extremely adept at working with people, which is why he is often tapped to help with open houses and special events at the University. We look forward to Zachary’s future plans as we are expecting great things!

2016-17 LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE AWARDS

  • Olin Prize for Design + Scholarship ($500 check and certificate)
    Each year the landscape architecture faculty and OLIN select a graduating student that it feels is the “outstanding” student for that year. This year’s recipient is …
    • Kathryn Miller                                                                                                     Katie is a very talented designer with a desire to make a difference with her design solutions. Katie strives for creative solutions in her designs that are analytical and representative of the community in which she works. All of her professors speak very highly of her as she is compassionate, caring and strives for the most sustainable and creative solution in all her studio designs.Katie has taken advantaged of numerous opportunities to improve her knowledge of the profession as well as her professional skills. She has had several internships and employment in the field and is a very active student member of American Society of Landscape Architecture. She has been the Vice President for the past two years. Katie has a bright and exciting future in the profession!
  • ASLA Awards (American Society of Landscape Architects Awards)                      Each year the landscape architecture faculty nominate up to two graduating students to compete for Honor and Merit Awards. A jury of practicing professionals is selected to review the “lifetime” work of the two students. After a formal presentation to the group, the jury makes its decision.
    • Award of Honor: Kathryn Miller                                                                                      Katie is a highly talented and motivated individual who has excelled in all of her studies at the University. Katie is the rare student who gives 100% in all she does. She has a passion for her work that is unprecedented and embraces our motto of ‘real projects plus real people equal real solutions. This is not always easy at the undergraduate level. But her ability to formulate meaningful connections between what she designs and its potential impacts on the community in which we work has exhibited a maturity I have not witnessed in many students. She will make an excellent addition to our design profession!
    • Award of Merit: Penelope Segura                                                                 Penelope has demonstrated the highest level of academic scholarship and accomplishments in landscape architecture. She is self-motivated, responsible and a great collaborator who exhibits design excellence in all she tackles. Her ability to consider the ecological, social, economic and experiential aspects of a place are evident in her designs. Penelope is also one of our most well rounded students as she was instrumental in resurrecting our student chapter of the ASLA and has been active in Student life where she has used her minor in psychology to make the University a place where all feel welcome. She is a true leader and I have no doubt Penelope will make great contributions to the field of landscape architect!
  • Olmsted Scholar
    LAF’s Olmsted Scholars Program recognizes and supports students with exceptional leadership potential who are using ideas, influence, communication, service, and leadership to advance sustainable design and foster human and societal benefits. This year’s winner is….
    • Kathryn Miller                                                                                                              Katie was a transfer student and what struck many of us was how sure she was that our college fulfilled everything she wanted to aspire to as a landscape architect. She joined us and has never looked back. I was very pleased when she made her decision as has become an extremely active student within our college. Katie has a strong commitment to community outreach and involvement. Her studio design projects over the last two years have largely focused on improving community health through design interventions that are not just physical but also mental and spiritual. Her recent design projects have systematically and holistically assessed the site and she has developed numerous design alternatives to ensure she advanced the most appropriate design to meet the needs of the community. She is a strong designer, is proficient in numerous computer applications, is a team player and is highly regarded by her faculty and classmates. Congratulations Katie!

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