Championing the next generation of architects

Last month saw Box Architects welcome a new member to the team. Sarah Dawes, a third-year architecture student at Leeds Beckett University (LBU), joined us for an intensive week where we sought to condense architectural practice into just five days.

During her time with us, Sarah took on a feasibility scheme and attended a site visit. She also joined consultant, business and marketing meetings – and most importantly, the team Friday breakfast.

We met Sarah at a ‘speed dating’ work placements event led by LBU. It seeks to engage second and third-year students with a regional architectural practice to offer them insights into the real world.

Lee Holmes and Rob Miller gave a five-minute ‘sales pitch’ to the students of what we could offer them. They were then allowed to approach the practices they were interested in. Box Architects featured high on the hit list, as we are a diverse practice – both in terms of staff and our areas of work. And although we are proudly commercially minded, Rob and Lee promoted the pre-construction design work that any student would get a chance to witness during their time with us.

Our involvement in the LBU event is a new initiative for the Box Architects team and an area we intend to expand upon as we continue to grow Box Academy, our in-house mentoring and training programme.

We are committed to offering support and to passing on the baton to the next custodians of our built environment. We wholeheartedly look forward to welcoming more students in the coming years.

Sarah Dawes, third-year architecture student at LBU, says:

“During my week’s work experience at Box Architects, I had the opportunity to see many different aspects of architecture within the practice as well as experience the working office environment.

I had a comprehensive timetable that gave me insight into the work of an architect which included attending design meetings and seeing the initial process of designing a new project. I also visited numerous project sites at different stages allowing me to see first-hand, buildings being constructed.

I was able to get involved in developing my thoughts on a ‘live’ project, having to sketch my design, model it and present it to the team, giving me a realistic insight into the role of an architect. My time at Box Architects has really helped me gain knowledge of architecture in the real world. The office environment and team are very friendly and approachable, creating a comfortable and relaxing place to work. I am very grateful to Box Architects for giving me the opportunity to spend a week at their practice.”