What’s it like for students studying Architecture today?
What do students look for when approaching practice placements?
As University terms start back in September, TODD Architects are celebrating our vital student team members, asking about the challenges and highlights and how we rate as a practice- from their perspective. Our first Q&A is with Part 1 Architectural Assistant Adam Moore. He shares his insights and experiences, his inspirations, dream projects, and how he looks forward to the next stepping stone of his career.
What inspired you to study architecture Adam?
I’ve always been interested in the built environment and how it affects people. Throughout school I was pushed towards engineering professions with architecture being a risky option following the financial crisis in 2008. However, I’m glad I persevered and it’s great to see the industry doing well.
What projects are you currently working on?
I’m currently working on The Gate in Sheffield – a large student housing development. I have previously worked on Royal Wharf in London. I have also worked on a number of exciting local projects.
What are the biggest challenges and the most rewarding elements of your work to date?
Beside all the rewarding design work, I suppose the biggest challenge would be working in a much larger design team with external consultants. This is not something that I would have been exposed to in university, and with the scale of the projects I have been working on I can see that coordination/QA is key for their success, so it has been rewarding to watch projects develop on site as planned.
Are there any specific architects that you would like to point out whose work has inspired you or your work?
Carmody Groarke and David Chipperfield Architects have inspired a lot of my work. As for a specific architect I would say Erik L’Heuruex would be my biggest influence. He works a lot in warmer climates and puts a lot of thought into façade depth, detailing and its veiling quality as a boundary between public and private.
If you had the opportunity (and freedom of a limitless budget!) to create a radical and visionary structure what would you design and where?
A large Crystal Palace-like structure built from recycled waste. The limitless budget would go into research into reusing waste in the built environment. The structure would stand as a representation of the struggles of our times and our ability to overcome them. It would become a large public garden and exhibition/event space with the ability to change function if required.
Apart from project work and client and colleague relationships, its important to have a supportive practice team culture and this can sway students to work for certain practices. Would this be your experience, and would you agree with this?
Part 1 is the first introduction for most students to the industry and practice of architecture in a professional setting, so I agree that it is critical to have a supportive practice team culture in place. I have been lucky to be able to work within a supportive, challenging and exciting practice with talented and passionate individuals that have allowed me to develop my ability in a multitude of architectural skills.
Reflecting on your time at TODD Architects, you got involved and contributed greatly with the Working Groups initiative (voluntary groups who organise events and activities), instigating the TED Talks series, which the team eagerly appreciated and attended! Was this something you enjoyed?
Yes, it was great being part of the working groups – it was a great way to get a break from work and meet people around the office I hadn’t worked with. I really enjoyed organising the TED Talks as it was great to use this platform to spread ideas and learn about the exciting discoveries and inventions happening globally throughout the office.
Did your time at TODD Architects fulfil your ambitions for the role and was it what you expected?
I’ve been in TODD Architects for nearly two years now leaving in September to return to university. I wasn’t sure what to expect going into a Part 1 placement but in retrospect it has exceeded any ambitions I had imagined.
What’s next, what are your future plans?
My immediate plan is to return to Queen’s University to begin MArch at the end of September. I look forward to going back to the explorative university studio environment. I hope to complete Part 3 shortly after University. After that who knows!
What words of advice would you offer anyone wishing to study architecture today?
I suppose to ignore the negative stigma around studying architecture – if you are passionate about it – go for it! (maybe I’ve not been in the industry long enough). Another word of advice would be to express your ideas as much as possible. An idea evolves when open to collaboration.