Thinking Ahead

The best thing you can do for yourself is to plan your education in advance. There are a few ways you can do this.

  1. Really question which classes you need to take and which you can waive. Give yourself extra space in your schedule, by waiving a class, to pursue certificates or just other classes that will inspire and challenge you.
  2. Attend convocation and upperclassmen studio elective presentations! This will give you an idea of the studio briefs in the future and the approach professors have towards the brief. Getting a sense for which professors you agree with, are intriguied by, or would challenge you will make studio and research choices much simpler.
  3. Get to know the faculty and staff of your respective departments. Even if you aren’t in that department yet getting to know the department will only open doors for you. I really wish I had done that sooner!
  4. Literally plan out every single semesters schedule, the credit count, and the possible alternatives. This can help make your case for waiving classes and gives you a plan to follow so you don’t have to figure it all out again every semester.

That day before classes may be the last little break you have but spending it on campus planning in the first few semesters is absolutely worth it. Best of luck everyone!


Back to School

Another lovely summer has come and gone. Thankfully this year, much like the last, brings with it the excitement of starting another adventure!

As a dual degree student I am set to study Architecture and Landscape Architecture here for the next four years. My first year I delved into Architecture and explored all the digital tools, fabrication strategies, and more unique design style encouraged by Penn. This year I am setting out to explore Landscape Architecture. My summer introduction, which I might add I reviewed in a tired but content state, was a wonderful peak into the world of landscape. From my experiences thus far I can say that the Landscape department is very welcoming, much more positive and encouraging, and overall strives to create lasting, meaningful connections between the students. The transition from summer to Day One has been smooth and extremely positive.

I will be sure to update my opinion at the end of the week with a proper review of all the classes I will have this semester.

As well a Landscape Architecture camping trip is being planned by upperclassmen and is sure to be a fun welcome! I can’t wait to join my new classmates and meet the upperclassmen on my first camping trip ever!!!

I hope that everyone else’s first day back was a joyful and invigorating as mine! Best of luck this semester!

Here are some fun photos of yesterday’s welcome back and today’s activities:


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Summer Institute

Two weeks of introduction to the Landscape Architecture program, how exciting!

Week one was a wonderful eye opening experience. Each day featured a type of local landscape typology (marsh, uppland forest, meadows, etc) as seen in a variety of locations. Having feild guides to study before hand would really help you get more out of this week.

I will say between the heat, the running about trying to identify plants, and a general enthusiasm to meet the new classmates I found myself well tuckered out at the end of each day.

These summer trips will continue throughout the school year as well. I highly reccommend training a bit before this class. For example, go for really long walks, try the bike machines to work on cardio, or maybe the treadmill with slight incline for an hour. This will seriously make it more manageable. I don’t think I would have kept up half as well if I hadn’t been working out prior to this class.

Also dedicate a backpack for these outings. It is nice to have a bag that will have all the supplies you need ready to go. Keep sunscreen, bug spray (30% DEET is really good), poncho, first aid kit, battery pack for phone, small bags, compass, magnifying glass, and other field supplies packed. Try to pick a bag that is good for all types of weather and is comfortable to wear because you will be carrying it with you all day.


Week two is more focused on technical design skills. A combination of hand modeling, hand drawing, and lecture will take up most of the day. Homework will be assigned so be ready to treat week two a lot like the regular school semester. I will post more on week two after our pin up on Friday!

PAWS-itively Adorable!


Every little bit of help keeps a smile on these cute little pets! Over the last couple months I have met several wonderful new people, lots of cuddly loveable four legged friends, and learned several skills in pet care. I can better handle a litter of kittens while cleaning up after them. I have learned to read dogs better and love taking them out to play in the yard! I am learning to take care of a variety of dogs and cats, all ages and sizes.

Aren’t they all PAWS-itively Adorable!