MLA I Programs' Pros, Cons, "Personalities"


Hi Archinect!

Long time lurker (so I've read older analogous threads), first time poster. I am a B.Arch grad with a couple years full time experience in an arch firm now set on pursuing a Landscape Architecture career instead of Architecture. I will be applying to MLA I AP programs this winter for Fall 2014 enrollment and would like to ask the community here for some input on pros, cons, idiosyncrasies, etc of the following programs, which are listed in diminishing order of my interest in them at this point.









I understand pros/cons/specialties largely depend on what I myself am looking for in a program, but in order to keep this first post concise I won't write that out unless prompted.

Thanks in advance!

Jun 19, 13 6:09 pm

Don't know all of them.  Don't know how much money you have, either.

UVa is really good at this, and one of the things is that their school is interdisciplinary in a way.  They want their people to engage the other disciplines.

VTech is a good skill-oriented school.  The region, and then some, really likes any of its grads, in arch., land. arch., CM, and engineering.

Also, while UVa isn't the most technically oriented of architecture programs, my read on land. arch. programs from having considered it once and looking at their curricula is that the technical content isn't as extensive as in architecture and the typical technical courses are better aligned across programs.

Is the program 2 years if you have a B.Arch., or is it longer?.  Just a thought.  Univ. of Georgia's MLA is definitely only 2 years if you have a B.Arch.  I don't know if that's a school you would consider, or how it's ranked (though I think it's good), but they explicitly state it's 2 years for B.Arch. grads.

Why the switch?  Just curious.

Jun 19, 13 7:14 pm

Feedback much appreciated, observant!

I enjoyed the hell out of arch school and summer interning, and am frankly spoiled by the stuff I get to do only a couple years in at my current firm. But I've always been lukewarm about the arch profession and have been glancing over at LA since early undergrad. At that point my only contact with that world was a few visits to the LA dept at the adjoining college. After starting full time work I've gotten to know a few landscape architects, and my interest in that career has risen as sharply as my interest in Architecture has dwindled (not starting at 300% to begin with). I'm 25 and now have a much stronger idea of what I want to do than I did at 18 or 22. 25 isn't an age of great wisdom, but I know I will be making a move out of Architecture and now is the time to do it. Though most people's careers turn into drudgery with time, mid-twenties seem too early to be less than passionate about one's profession. I could be wrong, what do I know.

UVa has been most accessible as a prospective student. I've been admiring their programs for a long time now. They (from what I've learned) strike me as very balanced and mature, unlike some others that shift and overcompensate every time the wind blows.

By VTech's regional popularity do you mean in VA, the Mid-Atlantic, or the South? Their curriculum looks great, and that price tag looks dang good! Money will be a strict parameter. With the pricier programs I'll be hoping for plenty of finaid, as I did with undergrad.

All of the programs I listed have a 2-year option on their MLA for those with a B.Arch or equiv. I was at one point considering UGa, Gainesville and UTAustin, but am concerned about limits on regional popularity, as I eventually want to end up in the Northeast. I went to undergrad there and am currently working far far from it.

Jun 19, 13 8:04 pm

VTech, as a minimum, the Mid-Atlantic and the South, and probably even PA/NJ.  I'm sure there are alumni in NY(C).  As for UVa, it's sort of the crown jewel of Public Ivy universities, so their alumni seem to be dispersed, and they help each other.  Either way, both are good schools.

Jun 19, 13 8:17 pm

Agreed. Don't know how generous UVa can be with grants for out-of-staters, though. The cost made me do a double take. Highest on the list!

I am thinking of dropping RISD. They are supposedly highly ranked, whatever that tells us, and commonly recognized in New England, but I haven't been getting great vibes from the school. I'm more interested in schools' curricula and connections with employers. Undergrad taught me that rank can mean any number of things.

If anyone out there knows about the other schools' peculiarities (like Cornell's horticulture emphasis or Penn being mostly landscape urbanism) please chime in!

Jun 19, 13 8:52 pm

Did you find out any more info on Tortonto? Just found their program.

Nov 20, 18 7:33 am

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