Join us for the Student & Emerging Professionals SPOTLIGHT Mini-Series

Mark your calendars for two upcoming opportunities to earn your professional development hours (PDH) with ASLA’s Student & Emerging Professional SPOTLIGHT mini-series! Each is a two-part presentation, providing access to forward-thinking topics and discussions.

Earlier this year, ASLA launched the Call for Proposals, giving Student and Associate ASLA members the opportunity to work with Professional Practice Network (PPN) mentors to create presentations for the SPOTLIGHT mini-series. Please join us later this month to view the selected presentations!

Transitional Landscapes & Tactical Mycelium

Wednesday, August 23 at 3:00 p.m.–4:00 p.m. (Eastern)
FREE for Student ASLA, $20 for Associate ASLA, $30 for ASLA members, $60 for non-members


  • Elyana Javaheri, Associate ASLA
  • Bridget Ayers Looby, Associate ASLA, SITES AP

PPN Mentors:

  • David Cutter, ASLA, Campus Planning & Design PPN Co-Chair
  • Laura Tenny, ASLA, Campus Planning & Design PPN Co-Chair
  • Kenneth Hurst, ASLA, Children’s Outdoor Environments PPN Officer and Incoming Co-Chair

image: Elyana Javaheri, Associate ASLA

Transitional Landscapes: Temporary Places with Permanent Impacts
Presenter: Elyana Javaheri, Associate ASLA

‘Transitional landscape’ often refers to a median space between two main spaces, but what if we evaluated the concept of ‘transitional’ differently? What if transitional landscape referred to a timeline? Whether it is due to social, economic, or natural issues, many individuals often find themselves in transitional living situations—voluntarily or otherwise—such as camps, shelters, prisons, and temporary housing, to name a few. Most individuals who seek these temporary and transitional living circumstances have experienced trauma and post-traumatic stress disorder; however, the landscape and shared spaces of these places are far from serene, beautiful, and considerate of the physical and psychological needs of these individuals. The question that this research seeks to answer is how can landscape help improve the lives of those already suffering from trauma and unfortunate circumstances, through specific research on needs of individuals suffering PTSD, and designing a landscape in response to those needs in a local context.


  • Within the context of environmental psychology, understanding the significance and importance of landscape architecture to the psychological wellbeing of individuals.
  • Study & analysis of case studies of transitional/temporary housing landscapes, their challenges, and opportunities.
  • Design strategies and elements to use in transitional landscapes.
image: Bridget Ayers Looby, Associate ASLA, SITES AP

Tactical Mycelium: An Exploration of Wastewater Treatment Byproducts as Ephemeral Building Material
Presenter: Bridget Ayers Looby, Associate ASLA, SITES AP

There is a growing movement of designers rethinking supposed waste products in urban industries. Within the current urban wastewater treatment process, one specific byproduct presents a unique opportunity for research into sustainable reuse: mycelium. These fine fibers of fungi serve as vast communication networks between plants and emerge on the soil’s surface as mushrooms. While ecologists and scientists research mycelium’s medicinal potential, designers are investigating its capacity as a new building material in a post-carbon future.

Tactical Mycelium explores this capacity in a 6-month Perkins+Will research grant framed by the pop-up approach and ephemeral nature of tactical urbanism initiatives, investigating the growth and optimized building potential of this fungus. The installation itself tests a singular catenary arch as the most effective way to grow the material into a self-supporting structure, use as little formwork as possible, and provide shelter and space for human occupation. Ultimately, the research aims to augment the tactical urbanist’s material palette and support future projects that reimagine our relationship with mycelium.


  • Gain an understanding of the relationship between mushrooms and urban wastewater treatment, and how this untapped byproduct might be cultivated for future use.
  • Learn about the properties of mycelium and the process of growing it into structures for short and long-term applications.
  • Learn about the methodologies and challenges of growing mycelium into a singular, self-supporting form.

Tropical TalkStory: Hardwood Hammocks and Aloha Art

Thursday, August 24 at 2:00 p.m.–3:00 p.m. (Eastern)
FREE for Student ASLA, $20 for Associate ASLA, $30 for ASLA members, $60 for non-members


  • Tricia Keffer, Student ASLA
  • Rachel Katzman, Associate ASLA

PPN Mentors:

  • Emily O’Mahoney, ASLA, Women in Landscape Architecture PPN Officer and Past Co-Chair
  • Kristina Snyder, ASLA, Women in Landscape Architecture PPN Officer and Past Co-Chair
image: Tricia Keffer, Student ASLA

Tropical Hardwood Hammocks of the Florida Keys: Why Sustainable Landscapes Are Vital for the Region
Presenter: Tricia Keffer, Student ASLA, Florida International University of Miami, Florida

The tropical hardwood hammocks in the Florida Keys are vital to the regional ecology of North and South America. Migrating birds from the Northeast travel through this corridor to South America for the winter. The Keys are the last “spring board” to prepare for the oceanic flight. If we lose this habitat, biologists suggest that it will be detrimental to habitats from North to South America. How can landscape architecture create spaces for people to enjoy the Florida Keys environment and preserve it at the same time?


  • Understand why the tropical hardwood hammocks are a key component for migrating birds.
  • Gain a greater understanding of the details of the tropical hardwood hammocks: their historical plant community, soils, topographical map, water, and plants.
  • See how can we design an ecologically sensitive habitat for people, plants, and wildlife.
image: Rachel Katzman, Associate ASLA

Aloha Public Art: Exploring Honolulu’s Art Scene
Presenter: Rachel Katzman, Associate ASLA

The recent conclusion of the inaugural 2017 Honolulu Biennial art exhibit, a network of art installations throughout Downtown Honolulu, marks a milestone achievement in the development of a local contemporary art program. Hawaii’s geography, culture, history, and tourism contribute to the unique art scene of the islands. “Living Aloha” is a cultural statement meaning mindful living and connecting to the land. This mantra is reflected in Hawaii’s people, art, and culture. As the public art scene continues to develop and emerge in cities across the world, landscape architects have a responsibility and opportunity to design spaces for art and cultural exchange.


  • Gain insight about the contemporary public art scene in Honolulu as a model for cities worldwide.
  • Understand how local culture, history, geography, economy, and tourism influence local contemporary artists.
  • Discover how landscape architects can lead the conversation about public art by designing spaces for artistic expression.

**Once on the registration page, sign in with your ASLA member ID and password to receive the member discount.

Note: Live presentations are made available as recorded presentations within five to seven business days after the presentation.

About ASLA Online Learning

ASLA Online Learning presentations provide information on new and evolving practices and techniques. These distance learning opportunities are also a convenient and affordable way to earn Professional Development Hours (PDH) needed to meet state licensure requirements. PDH are approved by the Landscape Architecture Continuing Education System (LA CES) and can be earned after viewing a presentation by completing and passing a self-study exam. Be sure to check state mandatory continuing education requirements to ensure that LA CES courses are compatible with your state requirements.

ASLA members, Associate ASLA members, and Student ASLA members are discounted at least 75% below non-member prices.

Over 100 recorded presentations are available for on-demand viewing, including:

  • ASLA annual meeting education session recordings,
  • The Professional Practice Network (PPN) Online Learning series,
  • The Student & Emerging Professionals SPOTLIGHT mini-series,
  • Sustainable SITES Initiative™ (SITES®) Education, and
  • Landscape Architect Registration Examination (LARE) Prep.

Browsing among these presentations is now easier than ever, with 22 topic areas to choose from, including: Accessibility/ADA, Ecology and Restoration, International Practice, Project Management, Resilient Design, Transportation/Complete streets, and more.

The ASLA Online Learning series also provides the opportunity to tune in live to ask experts questions, while earning PDH.

Questions? Please email us at

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