Architecture graduate returns to pass on career advice


BA (Hons) Architecture alumnus Joshua recently visited final year architecture students to share his experience as an Architectural Assistant at Nicol Thomas.

BA (Hons) Architecture

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With the work displayed at Graduate Show 2019, Josh was offered a Part I Architectural Assistant role at Nicol Thomas straight after graduation. Since then, Josh has expanded his technical knowledge, enhanced his conceptual design and improved his CAD drafting skills by working on planning application drawings for a client.

The assistant role at Nicol Thomas has allowed Josh to learn from people who specialise in different areas giving him a valuable insight into the minds of technicians, surveyors and project managers. When students asked about the best thing about his job, Josh mentions the unique opportunity to work with directors on big projects: “This has allowed me a more three dimensional understanding of what goes into a scheme, from the conceptual foundations all the way until the scheme is built”.

Commenting on challenges as a final year architecture student, Josh said: “The major struggle for most people in third year is wanting to skip ahead to the design of the building, and seeing something visual. However, the thing that sets a successful third year project apart from the rest is when the project is embedded in a deep, meaning concept that gives all aspects of the projects a meaningful back story to follow, giving a strong rationale to each design decision.”

Josh prepared for the visit by bringing in his portfolio to explain the students the process of his own practice.The students were most interested in the application of what Josh had learnt in University and how it is applied in the real world. Josh explained the difference between working in practice and working in studio, and advised students to learn good time management as it’s the key element when working on numerous projects at the same time.

He admitted that giving advice to the current third year students was extremely rewarding – the visit even made him consider returning to BCU as a visiting lecturer and share his experience with students on a different level.

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