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Robert W Sovinski

Horticulture and Landscape Architecture 

  • Professor of Landscape Architecture, Program Chair
765.494.1341
Horticulture Room 223
625 Agriculture Mall Dr.
West Lafayette, IN 47907-2010

Area of Expertise: Design Theory, Masonry, FLW

M.L.A. Harvard Graduate School of Design , 1979
B.S., Purdue University, 1975

Curriculum Vitae

Professor Rob Sovinski currently serves as the chair of the Landscape Architecture program. He began teaching at Purdue University in 1992 after working as a professional landscape architect in New York City for fifteen years where he served as the Director of Landscape Architecture for the multi-disciplinary firm of Haines Lundberg Waehler.

Professor Sovinski has primary teaching responsibility for three courses in the landscape architecture curriculum, LA 22600 - Landscape Architectural Design II, LA 24600 – Materials and Methods in Landscape Architecture and LA 47600 – Professional Practice of Landscape Architecture. He received the Class of 1922 Award for Outstanding Innovation in Helping Students Learn for his novel hands-on approaches in the latter. In 1999 Sovinski taught this course to landscape architecture students at the Warsaw, Poland Agricultural University (SGGW) for which he was awarded that University’s Benjamin Flatt Medal. He also serves as the Freshmen Advisor for the Landscape Architecture Program and has been named the Outstanding Academic Advisor in the Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture eight times during his teaching career.

His primary scholarship interests focus on sustainable design and emerging technologies involving hardscape materials including brick, stone, wood and concrete. He is the author of two books: Brick in the Landscape, A Practical Guide to Specification and Design and Materials and Their Applications in Landscape Design. He has also completed a biography of early 20th century landscape architect, Francis Asbury Robinson.

Professor Sovinski has received numerous awards for his classroom teaching, including the Outstanding Teacher in the College of Agriculture and The Charles B. Murphy Award for Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching at Purdue University. He was twice nominated for the Carnegie/CASE National Professor of the Year by Purdue University. He is a member of the Purdue University Teaching Academy and his name was added to the university’s Book of Great Teachers in 2003.

Professor Sovinski is a member of the American Society of Landscape Architects, The Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture and is a Phi Beta Delta Fellow in the Honor Society of International Scholars.

Awards & Honors

(2003) Book of Great Teachers. Purdue University Teaching Academy.

(2000) Charles B. Murphy Award for Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching. Purdue University.

(2001) Fellow - Purdue University Teaching Academy. Purdue University.

(1999) Outstanding Teacher Award. Purdue University College of Agriculture.

(2000) Class of 1922 Award for Outstanding Innovation in Helping Students Learn. Purdue University Center for Instructional Excellence.

(2009) David C. Pfendler Outstanding Counselor Award. Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture.

(2008) David C. Pfendler Outstanding Counselor Award. Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture.

(2003) Who's Who in Agriculture Higher Education. Academic Keys.

(2002) Excellence in College and University Teaching Award. National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges.

(2002) Nominee - National Professor of the Year Program. Carnegie Foundation/CASE (Council for Advancement and Support of Education).

Selected Publications

Sovinski, R. W. (2009). Materials and Their Applications in Landscape Design (Vol. 1). New York, NY: John Wiley & Sons, Inc..

Sovinski, R. W. (2007). Brick Masonry. In Landscape Architectural Graphic Standards (Vol. 1, pp. 954-958). New York, NY: John Wiley & Sons, Inc..

Sovinski, R. W. (2005). Brick in the Landscape (Chinese Edition) (Vol. Chinese Language Edition). New York, NY: John Wiley & Sons, Inc..

Sovinski, R. W. (1999). Brick in the Landscape, A Practical Guide to Specification and Design (Vol. 1). New York, NY: John Wiley & Sons, Inc..