Yuhei Nakajima, WSD Landscape Architecture postgraduate was highly commended in the student dissertation category of the Landscape Institute Awards for his sustainable ski resort design.
The 29-year-old, who now works for AECOM as a graduate landscape architect, said: “This dissertation is not only an academic achievement but also led me to the company I long-wanted to work for. I now apply my knowledge in mountain planning as a part of the master-planning team.”
Yuhei's dissertation is called Winter Participatory Landscape: Designing Bulgarian Ski Resort in Time of Climate Change.
Yuhei, who graduated last year with a Masters in Landscape Architecture - which is accredited by the Landscape Institute, said: “The concept is for a ski resort that would function in a sustainable way. I looked at the perception of skiers and proposed a resort design which would provide an authentic experience and landscape participation through activity while potentially minimising the impact on the alpine environment.”
Dr Saruhan Mosler, Yuhei's MA dissertation supervisor, said: “Being an experienced ski instructor, Yuhei had a strong interest and passion in mountain landscapes and skiing as a sport. We supported him in his interest area so that he could combine these two areas into his MA research dissertation.
“In his thesis Yuhei explored the contemporary issues of skiing resorts and their landscapes that are highly pressurised by exploitation and ill-mannered management. These extreme valuable and endangered landscapes need to be designed in relation to the climate change issues and protected for future generations.
“Yuhei proposed a new approach to the ski resort environment from an ecological as well as a philosophical perspective. Through his dissertation, he came to secure a full-time position in AECOM, one of the world-leading engineering, architecture, planning and landscape architecture practices.”
Last year, Writtle College postgraduate Jacqui Jobbins won the student dissertation category in the Landscape Institute awards. She was also runner up in the President's Award.
Meanwhile, Writtle postgraduate student Jin-Koo Park, who is studying for an MA Garden Design, has been shortlisted for a Student Award from the Society of Garden Designers and will find out in January if he has won.