BAC Faculty Profile: Margarita Iglesia
April 22, 2020
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Margarita Iglesia is the Director of MLA Online Course Instruction, School of Landscape Architecture.
Tell us a little about your background. Where are you from and what first interested you in landscape architecture?
I am originally from Spain, but my family went to live in Venezuela when I was very young. Everyone loved it so much that we stayed there for the long run. Living in Caracas at that time allowed me to grow up in a free and democratic society with plenty of opportunities for personal growth and development. I studied architecture and later came to the U.S. to earn a Master of Architecture in Urban Design from Harvard University. My love of cities has led me to deeply appreciate and admire the fundamental role that landscape architects play in the design, health, and ecological balance of urban environments. Cities would not be near as beautiful, livable or inspiring, without parks, trees or urban wilds.
What brought you to the BAC?
I taught for a couple of years at my college "alma mater" in Venezuela before permanently moving to Boston, and I always felt that teaching was something I enjoyed doing. I joined the BAC when Lance Fletcher, then Director of the Sustainable Design Institute, asked me if I would be willing to teach online. There was a course developed by two well renowned professionals that needed a new instructor. I have been teaching that course ever since, and I have added five more courses to my roster through the years. Some of my courses are fully online and some are taught on campus. Fortunately, I don't teach them all at the same time, but I enjoy the rotational sequence of offerings. All my courses are focused on a few favorite subject topics - cities, design, history, sustainability, architecture, and landscape architecture.
What are you currently teaching, and what do you most enjoy about teaching?
I am currently teaching the Advanced Landscape Architecture Studio on Housing and Institutional Planning, together with my friend and colleague Sara Bourque, and the Contemporary Landscape Architecture Seminar in Urban History. Building upon my years of experience teaching online, I am also working to develop an online Master of Landscape Architecture (MLA) curriculum that will be consistent with the onsite program and professionally accredited. Learning is one of the two things that I enjoy most about teaching. Teaching is learning and helping others to learn along the way. The other thing that I enjoy and cherish is interacting with my students. They are so motivated, and they work so hard! The future is challenging, and they know that they need to be prepared. They make me feel inspired.
Margarita at a studio site visit (Photo by Nizar Abou Ezzeh, LAN2003 Spring 2020)
Margarita at TTT (Training Transformational Teachers, Spring 2017)
Beyond landscape architecture, what are your passions?
Travel, culture, music, cuisine, the magic of words and the human voice.
In honor of World Landscape Architecture month, what does landscape architecture mean to you?
To me, landscape architecture is the art of creating spaces where humans can feel at ease by reconnecting with nature. Nature can be terrifying sometimes, and landscape architecture can help us find common grounds where we could interact with natural forces while mitigating some of their most threatening effects.
April 22, 2020
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