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Student Team Wins Award for YSS Recovery Campus Plan

A team of Iowa State University landscape architecture students won the 2022 Confluence, Inc. Landscape Architecture Studio Prize for their project on the new YSS youth recovery campus.

Olivia Fletcher, Riley Fountain, Jordyn Kloss, and Abby Schlotfeldt received the top prize of $4,000 ($1,000 per student) awarded by the ISU Department of Landscape Architecture.

The project was developed in Iowa State’s Advanced Landscape Architectural Design Studio taught by associate professor Julie Stevens. The team proposed a site masterplan for the YSS youth recovery campus under development near Cambridge, which will provide emergency shelter, crisis stabilization, and residential addiction treatment to youth.

Stevens and the students worked closely with YSS youth as part of the trauma-informed design process, giving the youth a sense of ownership and ensuring the new site is focused on nature, wellness, and healing.

Throughout the year, the team conducted interviews and hands-on activities with the youth to learn about their experiences and include them in the process.

The site plan included a greenhouse, outdoor kitchen, herb garden, chicken coop, vegetable beds, an orchard, nature trails with a raised prairie boardwalk, a sensory garden, a large recreational field, and areas for activities like rock climbing and disc golf.

According to the ISU College of Design website, the studio prize was established by Confluence, Inc.—one of the largest and most-decorated landscape architecture, urban design, and planning firms in the Midwest—to “recognize outstanding student work, advance the landscape architecture discipline, and elevate the ISU landscape architecture department’s profile across the nation.”

The jurors noted that framing the project in terms of ownership and empowerment was a sensitive and strategic approach that demonstrated students’ understanding of their clients.

Read more about the YSS youth recovery campus. Read more about the ISU College of Design team.

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