Spring Classes Begin!

Hi again all!! I know I have been a bit silent recently. I am happy to be back however and have sooooo many stories to share! In the next week or two I’ll be recapping the major highlights of the last semester as well as the whole career/job section of this blog.

In more current news I am back in architecture for a semester. A semester which started well before the actual first day of class! Every year students entering 602 architecture, second year-second semester, are required to complete an anonymous portfolio for the Dales Competition. The Dales is an in house portfolio competition judged by faculty of the architecture department with winners receiving money prize for travel. The competition has a few key rules: every portfolio must be anonymous (no names anywhere, we are given numbers upon turning it in and are kept listed in a spreadsheet), a travel proposal must be included for travel outside the U.S.A., and it should be predominantly work completed at Penn (outside work may be included but it is typically not) fitting the template given (8.5×11 sheets). Portfolios were due by 10 AM on the very first day! Which means that much of winter break was spent editing project work, looking over layouts, and dreaming of all the wonderful places to go see in this world. And then getting a budgeted reality check. The Dales has a fluctuating monetary prize ranging from $1500-5000. The prize winner(s) are announced at a evening event TBD. Winners are released the funding once travel has been purchased (flights, boats, trains, etc) and are expected to travel to planned destination.

I am dreaming of a trip to Mexico. The place my boyfriend spent half his childhood growing up in and the other half missing. Where ancient ruins abut everyday life and ancient traditions, like building the chinampas of Xochimilco Park, are maintained. Mexico also holds a number of projects which I initially researched as part of an architecture studio in 2015 which completely changed the course of my career. After that research and that studio I had decided that I needed to study Landscape Architecture. While I still feel caught somewhere between the two, Landscape and Architecture, I am very happy to have the opportunity to study both. I trust the skills I have gained here will help me design a more integrated nature and city. A hybrid which hopefully will have some positive impact on a livable world.

So with a lot of clicking and a little daydreaming the semester began!

This semester I am in an architecture studio, taking an architecture elective on buildings and water, professional practice 1, a planting detailing class for landscapes, and media for landscape.

For dual degrees I highly recommend talking to both offices about your schedule and asking for the spreadsheet they use to keep track of what courses you need to take ASAP. I really wish they had given me that sooner(somehow I always got something else and not this version). I have done fine, but it would have taken some of the stress and pointless email coordination out of the equation. But with a little more effort I was able to get everything settled.

In addition to the regular 5 credit course load I am very excited to be a part of LA+ working on the next issue. I won’t say anymore there but if you haven’t already checked it out I highly recommend it! LA+ is a landscape architecture journal focusing on unique fields cross section with landscape, to learn more: https://laplusjournal.com/

I look forward to what this semester brings and hope that sharing it, and the recent past, with all of you will be helpful to your own journeys! Til the next story!