CT Society of Landscape Architects 

CTASLA Student Scholarships

CTASLA offers scholarships to students to encourage awareness and education in the field of landscape architecture. Scholarship applicants must be legal residents of the State of Connecticut. Application forms for 2019 should be submitted or postmarked between January 1 and May 1. Scholarships are announced by June 1.

CTASLA offers two scholarship programs:
  • The Karen Ann Shopis-Fox Memorial Scholarship is awarded to students currently enrolled in an accredited landscape architecture program at the college or university level. Download the 2019 Karen Ann Shopis-Fox Memorial Scholarship Application Form.
  • The Landscape Architecture Environmental Stewardship Scholarship for High School Seniors is awarded to high school students who are applying to study landscape architecture at the college or university level. Download the 2019 Landscape Architecture Environmental Stewardship Scholarship for High School Seniors Application Form.

We encourage you to alert qualified students to the availability of this financial aid. Thank you for helping to spread the word about the CTASLA Student Scholarships.

The 2018 recipient of the Karen Ann Shopis-Fox Memorial Scholarship is Gavin Figurelli, who is studying landscape architecture at Pennsylvania State University.

The CTASLA Karen Ann Shopis-Fox Memorial Scholarship

Gavin Figurelli

  When he was considering career paths in high school in Killingworth, CT, Gavin gravitated toward engineering and took several courses that prepared him to work in the A/C/E professions. "However, engineering was too black and white to me," he says. "I never could visualize what the built environment would look like and how people would interact in it."

When Gavin's artistic instincts led him to the Adobe Creative Cloud Suite, he began taking graphic design and fine arts classes and competing in design competitions, which fostered his ability to draw and depict his visions graphically. This love of the arts, coupled with technical and mathematical prowess, created tension when evaluating options for college and ways to make an impact on the world.

Enter landscape architecture. When his father showed him a project that a landscape architecture firm was working on for his consulting firm, Gavin realized that this was the discipline that melded his interests and talents. "The ability to incorporate so many different variables and fields of study into one cohesive discipline that can solve problems or improve the quality of the built environment excited me."

Gavin says his attraction to landscape architecture comes not only from the ability to create designs that make an impact on communities, but also from his ability to creatively represent what the built designs will look like. In his major work at Penn State he has been experimenting with three-dimensional representations and other forms of graphic communication. "I have particularly enjoyed working on designs that respect and interpret a site's historical context and surrounding communities while creating a new setting that can be enjoyed."

Lisa DuRussel, Visiting Assistant Professor of Landscape Architecture at Pennsylvania State University, says Gavin demonstrates an inquisitive nature, a strong commitment to design, and enjoys engaging in creative discourse. For his final presentation in Professor DuRussel's class last Spring, Gavin experimented with digital media, creating a well-crafted series of visualizations resulting in a strong, well-supported project. "His enthusiasm for design of the built environment as it relates to ecology and social activity shows promise for this future designer."

And, indeed, Gavin's career goals seem clear. "After attending this program, it is my hope that I will be readied to transition seamlessly into this profession and make my visions a reality."


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P.O. Box 209197, New Haven, CT 06520, (800) 878-1474                   Copyright 2019

The Karen Ann Shopis-Fox Memorial Scholarship

Karen Ann Shopis-Fox, who passed away in August 2011, was a long-standing member of ASLA, a talented designer, and a dedicated advocate for the profession of landscape architecture. She served as member-at-large and vice president on the executive committee of CTASLA in the 1990s and was a founding member of the golf outing committee and a driving force in the formation of our scholarship. Karen practiced in Fairfield County with her own firm, Karen A. Shopis Landscape Architects. She won the chapter’s prestigious George A. Yarwood Award in 2002, given in recognition of members who have given unselfishly of their time and talent to further the profession of landscape architecture within the state and the nation.

Donations to the CTASLA's Student Scholarships, benefitting the next generation of landscape architects, may be made at any time, in any amount, using the Donation button below or by mailing a check (to "CTASLA" — please write "Scholarship" on the memo line) to:

CTASLA Scholarship Fund
c/o J.M. Communications
35-31 Talcottville Road, Unit 318
Vernon, CT 06066