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K-State Today

April 22, 2021

Canfield earns 2021 Wayne Hunt McElwee Faculty Award

Submitted by Thom Jackson

Jessica Canfield

Jessica Canfield, associate professor of landscape architecture in the College of Architecture, Planning & Design, or APDesign, is the 2021 Wayne Hunt McElwee Faculty Award recipient.

The award is given to a faculty member for being an outstanding teacher as designated by the dean of the college based upon the recommendations of both students and faculty.

Canfield is a licensed landscape architect who holds a master's in landscape architecture from the Harvard Graduate School of Design and a Bachelor of Science in landscape architecture from Colorado State University. Prior to teaching she worked professionally for Martha Schwartz Partners, EDAW/AECOM and Gustafson Guthrie Nichol. Canfield focuses her practice, teaching and research around improving the social dimensions and environmental performance of urban public space. She is particularly interested in the concept of landscape performance and the relationship between how landscapes look and function.

Canfield has been awarded multiple fellowships from the Landscape Architecture Foundation to develop case studies of high-performance sites and to co-author a guidebook on landscape performance metrics. Most recently she has begun investigations of emerging materials technologies and the performative role surface plays in built environments. In 2017 she was awarded the prestigious Mary K. Jarvis Distinguished Chair to support ongoing research efforts. Canfield is especially passionate about teaching en plein air, and has led study-tours in China, Scandinavia, Boston and New York. Her students' work has been recognized with regional and national awards. Her dedication to teaching afforded her the 2014 Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture Excellence in Design Studio Teaching, Junior Level Award; the McElwee Faculty Teaching Award in 2013; and, the Jarvis Emerging Faculty of Distinction in Landscape Architecture Award in 2012.

"The McElwee Award is a fitting tribute given the intensity and drive Professor Canfield brings to all aspects of the academic endeavor, carried out with pure joy in teaching and an unswerving dedication to preparing our students to make a profound impact through design and planning," said Tim de Noble, dean of the College of Architecture Planning & Design.

The McElwee award was established in 1993 in honor of Wayne Hunt McElwee who received his bachelor's in architecture from K-State in 1950. He began his career the same year at Black & Veatch in Los Alamos, New Mexico. By 1957, McElwee was serving as head of the architectural department in the company's Special Projects Division, a position he had until 1970. In 1977, he was named a partner in the firm.

In his career, McElwee managed several U.S. Department of Energy projects, as well as numerous projects pertaining to the military. He set the standards for facilities used to store weapons, arms and ammunition and designed contractor support facilities for a military base, missile reentry system facilities and missile maintenance facilities. In addition to the many structures he designed, McElwee also prepared studies on energy use and pollution abatement at military bases.

The award was established to honor McElwee and provide recognition and support faculty growth and development for outstanding teaching at APDesign at K-State, the alma mater he loved.

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