Andrea Weissgerber

I graduated from DePaul University in 2014 with dual degrees in Environmental Studies and Art, Media, and Design. I have always been interested in integrating science and art. I took some time after graduation to explore different opportunities and gain field experience. Then, I discovered the Landscape Architecture program at UW-Madison. The program was seemingly tailored to my interests, preserving and restoring native plant communities while incorporating aesthetics and design.

I am a graduate student pursuing a Master of Science in Landscape Architecture with a focus on Restoration Ecology and Ecological Design. I have also been honored as 2016’s Wisconsin Distinguished Graduate Fellow. Although still in the planning stages, my thesis will examine the presence and disappearance of the white lady’s-slipper orchid (Cypripedium candidum) in Dane County. C. candidum is a state threatened species found in calcareous fens and wet prairies. My objective is to determine the major impacts threatening this species.

I am very interested in the restoration and management of Wisconsin native ecosystems, particularly prairies, savannas, and wetlands. Once I have completed my degree, I plan to work as a practicing restoration ecologist. I would love to use artwork as a form of public education about my current restoration endeavors and the importance of native communities. I want to find solutions to restore native ecosystems, embolden people’s capacity for stewardship, and create ecologically literate communities.