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Landscape Architect Finds Opportunities with Snyder’s Development Group

A strong desire to diversify her experience as a Landscape Architect prompted Anna Smith to seek career opportunities with the Snyder & AssociatesLand Development team.

“I’m from Iowa, so Snyder & Associates has always been on my radar as a potential employer because I’ve heard good things about the firm,” she shares. “When I decided to step-up my professional career, I knew this would be a great place to learn a lot and have opportunities to work on large scale projects.”

Before joining the Snyder family in January, Anna worked for a residential landscaping firm in South Dakota where she gained experience with installation, sales, and design. She also interned at a landscape architecture firm in Missouri where she assisted with graphics, CAD drawings, and construction documents.

“Anna’s experience designing and managing residential landscape projects helped her learn how to work with clients, design budget-conscious landscape improvements, and manage her time wisely,” states Tim West, PLA, LEED AP, Landscape Architect for Snyder & Associates.

Anna grew up on a farm outside of Atlantic, Iowa, and credits her upbringing for sparking her interest in landscape architecture.

“I’ve always been the creative person in my family, and I’ve always loved the outdoors. I grew up planting and gardening with my grandma,” she says, reflecting warmly on her childhood.

In high school, Anna came across the landscape architecture profession. She says it’s the perfect combination of who she is creatively and what she enjoys most.

“You can see your work from start to finish, watching it come to life. It’s rewarding and surreal at times, while also challenging, which keeps it fresh and interesting,” says Anna.

Other insights from a recent interview with Anna include:

What trends do you think will shape the future of landscape architecture? 

The push to redesign community infrastructure to be more pedestrian friendly, accommodate evolving technology, improve ecological systems, and manage stormwater will have a large impact. I also think rooftop green spaces and community-based design that encourages public engagement will influence the future of landscape architecture.

Reflecting on your career, what’s the most unique or interesting project that you’ve worked on?

The Royal Atlantis Resort in Dubai. It’s a sister resort to the Atlantis Paradise Island Resort in the Bahamas. As an intern for a firm in Kansas City, I contributed to construction documents for the project, which allowed me to gain great experience with that stage of a project. The project was unbelievable in terms of scale and it has a unique design, which makes it neat to have a connection to.

What might people not realize about the Landscape Architecture profession?

How much detail goes into everything, and how much time it takes. You have to be creative, but also know your designs can work and be implemented. Experience is important to know what’s possible.

What’s the best professional advice you’ve received?

Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Be open to learning and listening to others.

What’s something you’d like to do but haven’t accomplished?

Get my pilot’s license.

Have you traveled anywhere exciting?

I spent four months in Rome with my landscape architecture class in college. I got to study over there and travel a bunch in Italy and other places including Greece, Germany, England, Ireland, and Budapest.

What’s something you can’t resist?

A cold beer and puppies!