10 Unexpected Skills You Gain From a Landscape Architecture Degree

Landscape Architecture Degree

Article by Lidija Šuster A Landscape Architecture Degree can offer you a lot in terms of the what the course can cover, but we outline those unexpected skills that a  Landscape Architecture Degree can also bring with it.  If you have a landscape architecture degree — or aspire to get one — you will certainly be intrigued by the title of this article. As in any other profession, studying landscape architecture requires hard work and dedication — and I mean a lot of it. There will be times when you go days without sleep and are on the edge of a nervous breakdown. Only those who truly love this profession will persevere until they get that diploma. Earning your landscape architecture degree guarantees that you will gain countless skills directly related to the profession. But there are a lot of intangibles when you study a multidisciplinary subject such as landscape architecture. That means you will come away from university with any number of unexpected skills. Here are 10 of them:

Landscape Architecture Degree

1. Enjoyment of Landscaping, Even if You Don’t Get Paid for it

The “even if you don’t get paid for it” part doesn’t sound pleasant, does it? But behind that clause stands a very important message — you truly love your job. This doesn’t mean you will not find a full-paid job with your diploma, but sometimes you’ll have opportunities to volunteer. And if volunteering makes you feel capable, inspired, and happy, then you’ll know you are in the right profession. While looking for a job, read 10 Reasons Why You Are Not Getting Hired.

2. Details Become an Important Part of Your Work

For landscape architects, details are very important, as we state in the LAN article 10 Projects That Show the Power of Detail. People love details and will notice them in design. On some of your first college projects, you may have oversights, and that’s normal. But you’ll remember them and try to never repeat those mistakes again. The more projects you do, the more you’ll be analytical while drawing and planning, giving you plenty of time to master this important skill.

Landscape Architecture Degree

Orquideorama. Photo credit: Sergio Gomez –

3. You Become Very Critical When it Comes to Evaluating Public Spaces

As your knowledge grows, your sense for criticism will grow, too. Sometimes, you will stumble upon mistakes or negligence in the designs you see in the world, By observing the pros and cons in the spaces around you, you’ll become more careful in designing your own future projects. This will make you an even better professional, which eventually may get you your dream job. To see what perfect projects look like, explore 10 Incredible Projects For Students To Know About And Why.

The Highline is a great example of a planting scheme increasing biodiversity in an urban area; credit:

The Highline is a great example of a planting scheme increasing biodiversity in an urban area; credit:

4. Ideas Just Keep Coming Into Your Mind When You See an Empty Green Space An interesting phenomenon that can occur during your studies is a lack of creativity when thinking about projects. But after graduation, it is likely that your imagination will literally break the boundaries. There will always be opportunities for you to spot some empty green area that will spark the idea-making part of your brain. It’s very important to write down or sketch those ideas, because they could be just that innovation or solution that will interest your future employer. Speaking of ideas, check out the article 4 Awesome Projects for Small Garden Design Inspiration.’
Hilgard Garden. Credit: Mary Barensfeld Architecture

Hilgard Garden. Credit: Mary Barensfeld Architecture

5. Hardscape And Site Grading — Handling The Difficulties –No one is talented at everything. You may choose the hardscape as your primary interest, and thrive on it. This is a very broad part of landscape architecture, with a lot of opportunities — paving, water features, walls, stairs. It’s fun to design them, but you also need to be conscious about doing a responsible job and know how to make them safe. Also, site grading is a complicated task, and whether you know it or are still learning it, we recommend you read a book review of Landscape Site Grading Principles: Grading With Design In Mind. It’s very useful book for this field. 6. Falling In Love With Plants In your studies, there’s a lot to learn about plants. That’s when you’ll find out whether you’re a plant person or not. If you’re not much of a botanist, you can always direct your attention to hardscape. But if you are a plant lover, that won’t change much after you graduate. This can only be a bonus for you, because you’ll be ready for challenges that consider planting design. Knowing about plant behavior and requirements in given areas will make your projects successful. For examples, explore 10 Projects That Make Excellent Use of Planting Design.
NEO Bankside

NEO Bankside, by Gillespies. Photo credit: Jason Gairn

7. Knowing How To Deal With A Tight Budget

During college, you may relize how the implementation of projects can be expensive and you’ll understand their approximate value. This is important, because when you start to work off your college debt, dealing with a constrained budget will sometimes be inevitable. The same thing will likely apply to your work. You’ll know how to find and implement necessary elements into designs despite those constraints, and still accomplish beauty and functionality — just like Ground Inc. did in the MassArt Residence Hall project.

MassArt Residence Hall. Photo Credit: Ground Inc.

MassArt Residence Hall. Photo Credit: Ground Inc.

8. Environmental Problems Are The Fuel That Light Your Fire Of Ideas Being concerned about the environment is something that should apply to everyone. But you, as a landscape architect, are skilled enough to really do notable things to alleviate polluted areas. This is a serious business that is almost always done in cooperation with other planners and problem solvers. You know how to use the right plants, techniques, and various systems to clean up a damaged environment. One real example of how things can be done is Thalie Park by Urbicus.
Thalie Park. Photo credit: Charles Delcourt

Thalie Park. Photo credit: Charles Delcourt

9. You Become A Master Of Your Chosen 2d/3d Modeling Computer Program(S)

If you previously didn’t have any experience with software design programs, those courses in college would have seemed like a boogeyman. But it’s no surprise that the only thing that will scare off the boogeyman is practice, practice, and more practice. After college, it will seem like you have known how to use these programs your whole life. Find out what are 10 Top FREE Design Software Trials to Download Today.

10. Persistence Is Now Your Default Virtue

Let’s be clear — persistence will lead you to success. You must find the persistence seed lying dormant in your brain, then nourish it until it roots itself and grows into an unbeatable virtue. You’ll have enough time to develop it through years of education and, in combination with patience, it will pay off. With your landscape architecture degree and persistence, you’ll be up for the job search, as well as for professional and life challenges. By the end of your studies, you’ll gain a certain dose of self-control,and will be able to push through to the end without tears. Recommended for reading: 4 Steps to Help You Get a Job as a Landscape Architect.

Embracing Your Landscape Architecture Degree

It’s great to know that your profession has somehow shaped your personality. Without that, we would never be able to properly dedicate ourselves to our jobs and be the people who change the world. So embrace the lovely landscape architecture skills and go toward success! Have you found these skills in your landscape architecture degree? Do you have any other unexpected skill to add to our list? Tell us in the comments!


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Article by Lidija Šuster

Published in Blog

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