The Landscape Architects were really running this show. Not a Planner in sight. Everyone was very nice, and they showed us their beautiful models of would-be parks, squares, and revitalized urban areas. The faculty and students talked in vague ways, and when they got specific, they used vocabulary I did not understand (swales? whosey-whatsey software?), while the other prospectives nodded.
Two thoughts began to shimmer at the edge of my mind:
- These people were landscape architects, and that is a different tribe from planners, even though they share a peninsula (or, in this case, a building).
- Most, if not all, of the other prospectives had already applied to the program.
Eventually, I escaped to visit the regional planning department. They were unaware that MLA was hosting an open house that day, which made me suspect that a dual degree might not be as easy as they want me to think. I liked the regional planning professor, and what she told me about the department, and the prospect of a potentially free education; I do not like that the department is on the other side of the state. I also left with the happy impression that I could get into a planning program, no sweat.
The RP gave voice to one of the thoughts at the edge of my mind. "You're either a planner or a landscape architect," she said. "By nature," was the implication.