FIU Landscape Architecture recently took part in the 2013 FLASLA Annual conference and Expo, known as Florida’s number one gathering of landscape architects, manufacturers, growers and service providers from the landscape architecture profession. Held on July 17-20 at the historic Renaissance Vinoy and Golf Club in downtown St. Petersburg, this year’s expo featured special events, keynote speakers, workshops and several education sessions.
“I think the conference is the best way to network with landscape architects, and it also allows you to stay updated on what’s new in the landscape architecture profession,” indicated FIU MLA student Amanda Vargas Love. “Volunteering at this year’s FLASLA conference and Expo has given me the opportunity to directly interact with landscape architecture professionals and students.”
During the three-day conference, exhibitors and sponsors gathered to share their insights on the latest trends and technologies. The conference showcased 75 speakers and provided professional credits for courses, workshops and tours.
Lectures and workshops ranged from sea level rise in Florida to area development and building code. Three hands-on workshops also focused on cutting-edge Building Information Modeling technology in landscape architecture.
As a substantial part of this year’s conference activities, several tours were conducted to discover the historical and ecological locations in the St. Petersburg vicinity. Attendees were able to visit St. Petersburg Waterfront Parks, take a tour by the Tampa River Walk and visit one of St. Petersburg’s historic landmarks and one of the oldest nature-themed attractions, the Sunken Gardens.
FIU Landscape Architecture had a strong presence and positive response at this year’s FLASLA Conference & Expo. The FIU ASLA student chapter did not miss the opportunity to travel to St. Petersburg to see the work of its students and faculty recognized. At the Design Awards ceremony, first year MLA student Vanessa Alvarado received the Merit Award for her project “Urban Thread.” Additionally, Landscape Architecture alumna Martina Gonzalez (MLA ’13) presented her master’s final project, “Alternative Creek” at the education session, which also included Associate Professor and Chair of FIU Landscape Architecture Roberto Rovira, who participated in a discussion forum about landscape architecture education with University of Florida’s Landscape Department Chair Christina Gurucharri.