Cassandra Dell'Aquila - Landscape Architect

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EDS Group Inc.

Years of experience: 3

Current as of: December, 2021

Career Journey

2013-2017

Education

2020-Current

Career Journey 1

2017-2019

Career Journey 2

Present

Future Ambitions

Bachelor of Landscape Architecture
University of Guelph

Landscape Architect
EDS Grop Inc.

Landscape Architectural Intern
Stefan Bolliger Associates Inc.

- Become a Registered Professional Planner;
- Become a IAP2 Professional/Public Engagement Specialist; and
- Become the Principal of an LA firm.

Question and Answers

After graduation, what was the first position you had? How did that shape where you are now as a Landscape Architect?

The first position I had was as an LA Intern with SBA Inc. in Barrie, ON. It was a great position where I learned a lot and took on a great deal of responsibility in my role. I was exposed to a number of projects in different areas of the profession and discovered where my passion lies.

What is something that surprised you at the start of your career? or What is something that surprises you about being a Landscape Architect?

Something that surprised me at the start of my career was how competitive the field was. Writing proposals in response to RFPs is a huge part of the job - something they don't tell you in school! Without successful proposals, there is no work so you learn very quickly how to prepare an effective proposal and sell yourself.

Something that surprises me as an LA is that you need to prove yourself to other disciplines / professionals. LAs have come a long way, but there is still much to be done so that we are a recognized professions that is no longer confused with landscapers...

What are some of your roles and responsibilities?

- Master Planning;
- Detailed Design Drawing Preparation;
- Proposal Writing;
- Contract Administration;
- Construction Supervision;
- Tender Package Preparation;
- Conceptual Design;
- Preparation of Rendered Drawings and Illustrations; and
- More.

What does a typical day look like for you?

The beauty of my current role is that every day is different. There's no such thing as falling into a rut, because every day is different and interesting and definitely keeps me on my toes.

What skills do you feel are important to have as a Landscape Architect?

- Time management;
- Creativity;
- Open-mindedness;
- Environmental awareness;
- Detail-oriented; and
- Spatial awareness.

What are you passionate about as a Landscape Architect?

Creating spaces that balance human use with preserving the integrity of the natural environment. Connecting to people with nature even in urban spaces and nurturing an understanding that fosters environmental stewardship.

Tell us about some of the exciting projects you have been a part of.

Too many to count! From urban plazas that celebrate the culture and landscapes of a region to trail systems and master plans that ensure viable recreation opportunities for communities for years to come. It is never a dull moment and I'm loving every minute of it.

Describe something that you have found challenging as a AALA?. How did you overcome this?

Being a young female professional has been a challenge. Entering a field where you are overseeing construction projects I often found that I was required to "prove myself" to others in order to gain their respect. My advice - firstly, find an employer that has your back and believes in you. Secondly - don't second guess yourself. You know that you earned your spot at the table and that you are capable - nobody can take that away from you, unless you let them.

What advice would you give a new Landscape Architect?

Find a position that makes you happy!

If CAD work brings you joy, then find a role where your primary responsibility is drafting. If you get bored easily, find a position that offers a range of projects and daily tasks. Don't settle because your level of satisfaction in your role will be visible in your work.

What are your future goals?

- Become a Registered Professional Planner;
- Become a IAP2 Professional/Public Engagement Specialist; and
- Become the Principal of an LA firm.



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