Over the past few months we have been involved in two public education programmes specifically designed to introduce school age children to the built environment industry.
Representatives from Stanton Williams have acted as Architectural Ambassadors to the RIBA National Pilot Schools Programme, which looks to integrate the built environment into schools’ curricula with a view to encouraging school-age children to consider architecture as a career choice.
Associate Stephen Hadley and Architects Tom Fotheringham and Tom Harvey have been running architectural workshops with pupils from Woodford County High School. Pupils visited Central St Martin’s at King’s Cross with the Stanton Williams Ambassadors, and were then set a design task to come up with ideas for an extension to their own school building.
A second team from Stanton Williams, with Associate Caryl Stephen, Architect Nick Sinden and Architectural Assistant Conor Morris, worked with pupils from Erith School in Kent. Workshops consisted of a visit to the Paladian Design exhibition at the RIBA, and a classroom based activity where students were asked to design architectural elements or interventions for their own school.
The pioneering Open City Accelerate into University programme aims to improve access to higher education for school children from disadvantaged backgrounds, and support their ambitions to pursue a career in architecture. Stanton Williams’ Architect Craig Smith acted as a mentor on this scheme, alongside architects from a number of architecture pracitces.
Over the course of 4 sessions, students were set a range of exercises including collage, model making, architectural drawing and presentation. The exercises were designed not only to teach relevant skills for studying architecture, but also to build up work for a portfolio with which students could use for their university applications. The course also included visits to Stanton Williams’ studio, giving pupils hands on experience in the working environment and chance to explore creative aspects of working life such as the model workshop and design sessions.