School of Design and Community Development

Peter Butler, Director of the School of Design and Community Development

Degrees Offered

  • Master of Landscape Architecture with a major in Landscape Architecture
  • Master of Science with a major in Agricultural and Extension Education
  • Master of Science with a major in Design and Merchandising
  • Doctor of Philosophy with a major in Agricultural and Extension Education
  • Doctor of Philosophy with a major in Human and Community Development

The School of Design and Community Development’s primary mission is to prepare leaders, who influence the economic, social, aesthetic, and functional development of communities, states, and nations, dedicated to the improvement of quality of life for all members of society in harmony with the natural environment.

The School offers curricula in agricultural and extension education, design and merchandising, and landscape architecture. The mission of the agricultural and extension education program is to empower their majors for the choices and challenges of the twenty-first century. The faculty members in this program bring their love of the profession to students in an educational setting.

The graduate program in landscape architecture at WVU provides study opportunities for students entering the program from disciplines other than landscape architecture as well as advanced study opportunities for students who already have a design background. Our students work closely with faculty members and practicing professionals in the field to develop the skills essential to their professions and to examine the underlying theories on which they will ground their practice. The landscape architecture graduate program provides students with real world experiences and research opportunities. Graduate students are also exposed to faculty who have doctoral or advanced degrees in their field and who work collaboratively with national, state, and community agencies or organizations. Our faculty members are engaged in extensive research and are considered experts in their field of study.


The following admission and performance standards, in addition to university and college requirements, are normally required to qualify for acceptance as a regular student to the Ph.D. program in Resource Management and Sustainable Development, the Human and Community Development option:

  • A master’s degree and a grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 or higher (on a 4.0 scale) in graduate courses is normally required for the AGEE and HCD areas.
  • A minimum combined score of 300 for the verbal and quantitative sections of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE).
  • Three letters of reference from individuals who can attest to the applicant’s potential for academic success and/or relevant career-related experiences should be sent directly to the graduate program coordinator.
  • A current resume or curriculum vita.
  • Four years of career-related experience for those seeking admittance into the AGEE area.
  • Other supporting materials you wish to have considered with your application.

Applications are reviewed by the Graduate Admission Committee, the graduate program coordinator, and the School Director who jointly make the admission decision. Applicants who do not meet the requirements but have special qualifications or circumstances may be admitted as provisional graduate students.



  • Peter Butler - M.L.A. (Iowa State)
    Landscape Architecture - Cultural landscape planning and interpretation, Community design


  • Cindy Beacham - Ph.D. (Virginia Tech)
    Design Studies-Design thinking, Design pedagogy, Design for children, Evidence based design
  • Deborah A. Boone - Ph.D. (Ohio State University)
    Agricultural & Extension Education-Extension education, Leadership development, Program evaluation and development
  • Harry N. Boone, Jr. - Ph.D. (Ohio State University)
    Agricultural & Extension Education-Computing technology, Teaching methods, Social science research
  • Michael J. Dougherty - Ph.D. (Virginia Tech)
    Landscape Architecture-Environmental design and planning
  • Stacy A. Gartin - Ph.D. (Ohio State University)
    Agricultural & Extension Education-Communications, Program planning, Leadership development, Teaching methods
  • Judith Wasserman - M.L.A. and M.R.P. (Cornell University)
    Designing healthy places, Urban Design, Historic landscape architecture preservation planning, Modernist landscapes, Cultural meaning and place-making

Associate professors

  • Ronald Dulaney Jr. - M. Arch. (Virginia Tech)
    Interior Design-Architectural design, Design and culture, Design media, Material and fabrication processes, Poetics of construction
  • Hodjat Ghadimi - Ph.D. (Ohio State University)
    Design Studies-Intelligent build environment, Innovation economics, Energy-environment-economy interaction modeling, Sustainable development planning, GeoDesign
  • Michael Hasenmyer - M.L.A. (North Carolina State University)
    Landscape Architecture-Virtual simulation and design education
  • Colleen Moretz - M.F.A. (Marywood University)
    Fashion Design - Transformative and sustainable practices, Design process; experimental, couture, and market-oriented, Teachiing methods-traditional and digital approaches
  • Kerry S. Odell - Ph.D. (Ohio State University)
    Agricultural & Extension Education-Research methodology, Microcomputer applications, Teaching methods
  • Charles B. Yuill - M.L.A. (University of Massachusetts)
    Landscape Architecture-Computer applications, Site analysis

Assistant Professor

  • Jessica Blythe - Ph.D. (University of Florida)
    Agricultural & Extension Education-Agricultural education, STEM education, Teaching methods, Effective teacher professional development, Quantitative and qualitative research methods
  • Debanjan Das - Ph.D. (University of Missouri)
    Omni channel retailing, Global issues and Fashion, sustainability issues in fashion, Fashion promotion and merchandise planning and control
  • Vaike Haas - M.L.A. (University of Michigan)
    Landscape Architecture-Native species, Stormwater management, Regional greenspace
  • J. Chris Haddox - M.S. (West Virginia University)
    Design Studies-LEED AP, Green advantage certified, Sustainable design and construction, Green building theory and practice
  • Shan Jiang - Ph.D. (Clemson University)
    Landscape Architecutre-Planning and design of the build environment, Architecture and health, Therapeutic landscapes
  • Katie Baker Jones - Ph.D. (University of Missouri)
    Fashion, Dress & Merchandising-Fashion media, Fashion studies, Sustainable fashion, Fashion as material culture
  • Jason McKibben - MEd (Texas A&M)
    Agricultural & Extension Education - Teaching and learning in agricultural mechanics, Experiential learning, STEM in agriculture
  • Craig Nelson - M.I.D. (North Carolina State University)
    Design Studies-Designing consumer products, Industrial design, Prototyping, Brand identity
  • Lisa Orr - M.L.A. (University of California, Berkeley)
    Landscape Architecture-Vernacular and cultural landscape analysis and theory, Landscape architectural graphics and representation
  • Stefania Staniscia - Ph.D. (IUAV University of Venezia, IT)
    Landscape Architecture-Landscape Design with focus on brownfields and energy landscape

Visiting Assistant Professors

  • Lee Mullett - M.S. (West virginia University)
    Interior Design-Teaching, Design
  • William Plyler - Ph.D. (West Virginia University)
    Interior Design-Architectural design, Design technology
  • Elijah Pollard - M.F.A. (SUNY)
    Fashion, Dress & Merchandising-Fine arts, Design

Professors Emeriti

  • Donald R. Armstrong
  • William H. Hagerty
  • Mary Rose Jones
  • Layle D. Lawrence
  • Marian B. Liddell
  • George W. Longenecker
  • Nora MacDonald
  • Janice Yeager