From April 27, 2022 to October 2023, Dorothea, an aspiring architect and dedicated student at London Southbank University, became an integral part of the Construction Specialties Technical team, dedicating her Wednesdays and Fridays to gain hands-on experience in the field of architectural building products. Below, Dorothea shares her perspective, explaining what it was like combining University study with real-world, hands-on experience as she shares her insights, challenges, and lessons learned during her time at CS.
Working at CS alongside my studies has been an amazing experience. It has enabled me to gain practical experience of the construction industry and I have enjoyed getting to know my colleagues who have been happy to share their knowledge and experience with me.
Over the past few months, some of the projects I have been working on include Airfoil Solar Shading, Louvres and producing BIM models for the Acrovyn and Louvre product ranges.
I have really enjoyed working on real life projects as part of a team, as well as being given the opportunity to work independently. Working as part of a company operating internationally is also an experience that I have very much enjoyed.
If you are unsure about something, don’t be afraid to ask. Be open-minded and curious, some of the most valuable lessons can be learned by speaking to your colleagues and learning from their experience.
While working at CS, I have enjoyed improving my existing software skills, as well as learning new ones. Working on the technical team, I have also been able to learn about a more product design/manufacturing related side than from my architectural studies.
I am going to miss lunchtime walks with my colleagues and the familiar atmosphere in the office.
I am looking forward to starting the next chapter on my journey to becoming an architect by working as a Part 1 Architectural Assistant before returning to university for my masters degree. The practical experience I have gained by working at CS will be invaluable for my future career.
I would recommend working at CS to other students. Throughout my time working at CS, everyone has been very supportive and helped to ensure that work fits around my studies. While good time management has been critical to juggling work and study, I have found the practical experience has also provided a good balance to my studies.