LSU Landscape Architecture #1 Yet Again; Professor Max Conrad Named “Most Admired Educator”

The undergraduate and graduate programs at the LSU Robert Reich School of Landscape Architecture (RRSLA) have once again received top rankings from DesignIntelligence magazine, the leading journal of design professionals. The 2018–19 issue of “America’s Best Architecture & Design Schools” ranked the undergraduate program as number one in the nation and the graduate program as number five in the nation.

Max Conrad

Professor Max Conrad

Max Conrad, professor of landscape architecture at LSU for over 50 years, was named a “Most Admired Educator” of 2018-19. Each year, DesignIntelligence honors excellence in architecture and design education, by naming outstanding professionals from these fields. Educators and administrators from the disciplines of architecture, interior design and landscape architecture are considered for inclusion. The Most Admired Educators are selected by DesignIntelligence staff with input from thousands of design professionals, academic department heads, and students.

“It is hereby recognized that Max Conrad is honored and awarded the DesignIntelligence Most Admired Educator 2018-19 designation for his impact on students and the design practices, design professions, and the community. DesignIntelligence Most Admired Educators are chosen with extensive input by students, academic department heads, design professionals, and more,” stated David Gilmore, President & CEO of DesignIntelligence.

“This was a big surprise to me and I want to thank all who made this honor possible,” Conrad said.

“Max Conrad has guided and taken care of generations of students and alumni,” said Alkis Tsolakis, dean of the College of Art & Design. “For this he is not only admired but loved. He embodies all the qualities that make the Robert Reich School of Landscape Architecture the great place that it is.”

“Max, you bring great honor and attention to LSU,” commented Susan Turner, professor emeritus of landscape architecture. “This is so well deserved. Thanks for over a half century of enthusiasm and commitment.”

Alumni from many years at LSU sent their congratulations to Professor Conrad, sharing their positive memories of his classes and many student trips that he organized. All agreed that he is a most admired educator.

LSU’s landscape architecture undergraduate program has been consistently ranked in the top two in the nation for well over a decade; the 2018–19 ranking is the ninth time the undergraduate program has held the number one position since 2006. The graduate program has also been ranked within the top six in the nation for over 10 years, sharing top rankings with Harvard, Cornell, the University of California, Berkeley, and the University of Pennsylvania. LSU is by far the most affordable graduate program of the top five.

“I’m pleased that our rankings remain strong,” commented Mark Boyer, director of the LSU Robert Reich School of Landscape Architecture. “These rankings are evidence that we continue to do a great job preparing our graduates to go into the profession and contribute to our legacy of excellence.” 

DesignIntelligence’s research ranks undergraduate and graduate programs from the perspective of leading practitioners. Each year, approximately 3,000 hiring professionals from more than 2,000 professional practice organizations participate in the research and are asked to rank the accredited schools best preparing students for success in the profession and for designing a sustainable future. Firms are queried about additional issues, as well, such as how programs rate in teaching various skills, such as communication, computer applications, construction methods and materials, design, planning, research, cross-disciplinary teamwork, sustainable design practices and principles, and theory.

Surveys for “America’s Best Architecture & Design Schools” are conducted annually by DesignIntelligence on behalf of the Design Futures Council. The research ranks undergraduate and graduate programs from the perspective of leading practitioners. Survey participants are professionals in architecture, industrial design, interior design, and landscape architecture, drawn from the Greenway Group database of leading firms throughout the United States. Visit to for a complete list of design school rankings.

About LSU Robert Reich School of Landscape Architecture

The Robert Reich School of Landscape Architecture has established an international reputation as one of America’s leading and consistently top-ranked programs. Part of the LSU College of Art & Design, the school offers Bachelor of Landscape Architecture and Master of Landscape Architecture programs. For more than 70 years, the program has produced landscape architects who practice all over the world and participate in the full spectrum of the discipline. For more information, visit