CTASLA Celebrates After Federal Government Designates Landscape Architecture a STEM Discipline
The designation recognizes the high degree of science, technology, engineering and mathematics course work required in landscape architecture collegiate programs.
(Photo: Innovation Partnership Building, UConn Technology Park, Storrs, CT, award-winning project by Langan)
WASHINGTON (July 12, 2023) – The Connecticut Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects applauds the decision by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to designate landscape architecture a STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) degree program. The American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) advocated for the designation.
Landscape architecture programs are pioneering some of the most innovative research and developing new technologies - from using artificial intelligence for urban agriculture, to urban planning for autonomous vehicles; to hydraulic modeling, robotic fabrication, and augmented reality for water bodies, and more.
“Landscape architecture applies science, technology, cutting edge research, and engineering principles, to design healthy communities, active transportation projects, campuses and parks. We help communities adapt to climate driven extreme weather and support biodiversity,” said Torey Carter-Conneen, CEO of ASLA. “The infrastructure challenges in municipalities across the country are enormous —landscape architects bring transformative solutions. Today’s decision will advance landscape architecture education and practice, and that is great for America and the global community.”
"The STEM designation finally reflects the reality of the discipline of landscape architecture. Our work is fully dependent on science and technology, from understanding soils at the level of microbial interactions and nutrient exchanges, which keep our urban canopy alive, to coastal adaptations informed by continuously evolving climate data," said Gary Hilderbrand, FASLA, the Peter Louis Hornbeck Professor in Practice and Chair of the Department of Landscape Architecture at Harvard Graduate School of Design. "This new designation brings with it greater opportunities for students and graduates throughout the United States and beyond to become leaders in the field."
“Landscape architects have incredible responsibility for the health, safety and well-being of communities which is why it’s imperative for landscape architects to continue to be licensed to practice,” said Emily O'Mahoney, FASLA, President of ASLA. “The STEM designation will be an additional tool in helping decision-makers understand the rigor this discipline demands.”
The application materials ASLA submitted can be found here.
About ASLA and the ASLA Fund
Founded in 1899, the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) is the professional association for landscape architects in the United States, representing more than 15,000 members. ASLA Mission: Empowering our members to design a sustainable and equitable world through landscape architecture. ASLA Fund Mission: Investing in global, social, and environmental change through the art and science of landscape architecture.