The National Capital Area Garden Clubs, Inc. is delighted to present an $11,000 scholarship to Ashley Coates, a Master of Landscape Architecture at Virginia Tech University.  Ashley hails from Alexandria, Virginia and is a graduate of George C. Marshall High School and Bridgewater College. The selection committee found that Ashley’s goals and activities are closely aligned with those of the NCAGC and was worthy of our support.

Her undergraduate awards include:  Publication of her senior thesis at Bridgewater, “Perennial Growth”, a native species garden and   Keep Virginia Beautiful grant recipient for two years, 2014 and 2015. Extracurricular activities include: Vice President of American Society of Landscape Architects Student Chapter at Virginia Tech; Intramural Sports at Bridgewater College,=; Fitness Instructor at Bridgewater College; Community Gardening at Bridgewater College; and full time work experience in horticulture, landscape maintenance, vegetable gardening and public gardening, all at the National Cathedral part time while still pursuing studies in Landscape Architecture.

Ashley’s initiative came through when she decided she was interested in plants and environmental awareness and sought a career in this area.  Her undergraduate college did not have a Landscape Architecture program, but she crafted an undergraduate degree of environmental science with a minor in art and finding other ways to incorporate landscape design into her education.  One of those ways was her Senior Art Theses, Perennial Growth, mentioned above in this article. In graduate school, Ashley wishes to further her knowledge of design and ecology while increasing her ability to communicate ideas effectively and learn how to implement the newest practices into landscapes.

The Director of the Graduate Program in Landscape Architecture stated “As Ashley’s statement of purpose indicates, she has an intense curiosity about the deep commitment to her newly chosen field of landscape architecture. Her academic work thus far in the program is exemplary.”

Ashley Coates continues to work at the National Cathedral and perhaps your visits there will give you an opportunity to meet her.