Josie is from Tennessee and is a 5+1 student in her final year of the program. 
1.    What was your undergraduate experience and how did it influence your decision to pursue a MLA?
I am on the dual track within the College of Design as a 5+1 to get both my undergraduate Architecture degree and graduate Landscape Architecture degree. Throughout my design career even in architecture, I always seemed to drift towards landscape through incorporating plant walls, creating walkable infrastructure, and imagining how we can use vegetation in more creative ways. The Landscape Architecture pathway has pushed me to think on larger, regional scales and has influenced the way I define the relationship between us and our environments.
2.    What activities do you pursue outside the school?
I am on the executive team of SPEAK, Students Promoting Environmental Action in Knoxville, where I hold the title of Green Thumb. I have been running the SPEAK garden outside of the Culinary Institute here on campus for three years now. We have received grants from the Green Fee both this year and the last to establish more perennial plants, infrastructure for the club, and increase our yields. All of our produce is donated to the Culinary Institute and food pantries on campus, mostly Big Orange Pantry, and we are involved in a variety of farmer's market events too. It is a great project to see landscape ideas come to life and get my hands in the dirt!

3.    Do you have any advice for future landscape architecture students?
My advice to future designers is to make drawings, objects, or models that are fun for you to make, that push you to see things differently, and that require you to try new things while you are in an environment with a lot of resources. I personally enjoy model building and so I made sure to get to know the tools of the Fab Lab and woodshop in order to make my ideas for studio come to life. Other people create insane digital drawings and they learn Rhino, Grasshopper, Blender, etc from other coursework to bring layered dimensions to it. Figure out new tools and then go make cool stuff!

4.    What do you or will you miss about Knoxville?
Knoxville lies in a beautiful region of the world. From Ijams Nature Center to House Mountain closer to Knoxville and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park an hour away, there are a variety of parks to hike, kayak, backpack, camp, and bike around. I will dearly miss the October reds of the mountain sides, the springtime flower blooms, and all of the seasonal changes that happen in this area. Knoxville is a wonderful place to get outside and experience Appalachia.

Studio Model // Instructor Andrew Madl

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