Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture

Scott Fulford – Region 7 Director Candidate

CELA (Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture)

Scott Fulford – Region 7 Director Candidate

Scott Fulford, Director of Special Projects and Faculty in Landscape Architecture Boston Architectural College

My career path has been somewhat out of the ordinary. In brief, I chose to wholeheartedly follow a passion for landscape design while in the midst of a successful career as a physician. As such, my skills, strengths, and interests are based on both a foundation of graduate education in and practice of landscape architecture as well as years of training and work as a physician in inner-city community health centers. I have found there are many ways in which medical practice and landscape architecture overlap: skills in effective management, communication, research, pattern recognition, prioritization, organization, and multi-tasking are essential in both disciplines.

Above all, I have found that teaching is truly the most satisfying aspect of both professions. As a physician, I approached every encounter with a patient both as a chance to teach and empower and as an opportunity to learn. In my work with medical students and residents, I strove to foster independent thought and compassion for the sick and disadvantaged. When I had the good fortune to return to graduate school to study landscape architecture, I observed various approaches to teaching through the lens of life experience and as a not-so-traditional student. All of these experiences have served me well as I have developed and taught courses and studios in research, history, design, and graphics for undergraduate and graduate landscape architecture students over the past several years. Over this time, I have gained valuable insight into the distinctive features of design education and the importance of meeting and exceeding program accreditation requirements. I have worked continually to improve both the content and the delivery of my courses in order the meet the needs of students who possess a wide range of abilities, interests, and backgrounds. I have also sought ways to bridge the particular challenges faced by international students. Focus, flexibility, listening, perseverance, humor, and patience are the building blocks of my teaching. In the end, I admit that I often learn as much from my students as they learn through my efforts. Again, the parallels to my career in medicine are apparent.

In August 2019, I was appointed Director of Special Projects and Faculty in Landscape Architecture at the Boston Architectural College (BAC) after more than five years as an adjunct instructor at the school. This new role has enabled me to apply my passion for teaching and landscape architecture on a broader scale and to delve into the complexities of institutional program management. I look forward to having an impact on the academic practice of landscape architecture at the BAC and beyond.

The functions of the Regional Director require effective outreach to and communication with member schools within the region, as well as organizational skills to report on significant developments and challenges. Certainly, an understanding of both the academic and program management aspects of landscape architecture education are required. I have been fortunate to have experience in both at the Boston Architectural College (BAC), a school with an untraditional history, mission, student population, and focus on combining conceptual and analytic thinking with practice. At the 130th anniversary of its founding, the BAC is reaffirming its commitment to providing and supporting accessible higher education opportunities for a broad range of students. A large measure of the school’s mission is to foster equity in the built environment and diversify the design fields. The school’s mission articulates well with my own core values. I see the role of Regional Director in CELA as a way to furthering these values within landscape architecture education through service on standing committees and collaboration with members of other institutions in Region 7 and beyond. I sincerely believe that the depth of my teaching and management experience, range of research capabilities, and breadth of professional experience are assets that I will bring to the position of Regional Director for Region 7. It has been a privilege to be a member of the faculty in the School of Landscape Architecture at the BAC since 2014. I am truly excited about the possibility of expanding my role in landscape architecture education and contributing to the discipline on a broader scale.