Jennifer Johnson is a veteran of the Philadelphia Flower Show.
While many of Temple University Ambler’s Landscape Architecture graduating seniors have maybe one or two years of Flower Show experience under their belts thanks to the hands-on, design-build nature of the program, Johnson has eight.
A graduate of W.B. Saul High School in Philadelphia, Johnson had already been a volunteer at the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society’s premiere event for four years running. She wasn’t about to let that streak end when she made the natural transition to the Ambler Campus.
“I asked to volunteer as a freshman and as a sophomore. It gave me the opportunity to see how the exhibits were built and to interact and learn from the students in the classes ahead of me,” she said. “When I was asked to lead the graphics team for the 2008 exhibit (“The Big Four Mississippi Meander”), I was extremely honored and returned to volunteer again in my senior year. The terrific benefit of design-build projects like our Flower Show exhibits is that you get to see a concept become a design and then that design is constructed and built by hand — it gives you a real sense of accomplishment.”
Eco-Chic Gardens: A Success Story in Transforming Your Future
Temple University Ambler alum Kimberly Lock (AMB ‘07, Horticulture) affectionately calls herself a “corporate escapee.”
Lock had a full 15 years of corporate experience — even running her own collection agency for a time — but that was not where her passion lay.
“I was pulling weeds out in a suit with a briefcase slung over my back. I’d be working on my garden at 2 or 3 a.m. with a spotlight on,” she said. “It was a no brainer really. I loved working with plants and wanted to make a living out of it. I was 36 and wanted to completely change careers.”
Within a year of having this life-altering epiphany she enrolled at Temple University Ambler. While at Ambler, Lock met numerous kindred spirits, including Ann Laughlin (AMB ‘05, Horticulture), a fellow survivor of the business world who would eventually become her partner in a new path for both of their lives — Eco-Chic Gardens, which formally opened for business in Andalusia, Bucks County, Pa., in 2007.