Monday 19 December 2016

xsite Architecture and PlanBEE

Maddy’s mug shot

xsite Architecture joined up with a number of other private sector practices and Gateshead College to create an alternative route into the construction industry- PlanBEE. The course is structured so that each student has the opportunity to work in each sector on rotation, for the duration of the course. A PlanBEE student's time is predominantly spent in the workplace, with 1 day a week in college, meaning that much of their learning is office based.

As a practice we strongly believe that PlanBEE offers a great alternative route into the construction industry. It provides a very unique opportunity for students to experience the different sectors within the industry ensuring that, upon completion of the course, they are able to make an informed decision as to which sector they wish to work in. We also believe that it offers a viable and practical solution for those who wish to earn whilst they study.

Our first PlanBEE student- Madeleine, joined us back in October. She has fitted straight into practice life and we are very much enjoying having her as a member of the team.

Below is a short Q&A we did with Maddy over a cuppa....

Where do you come from?
I come from a small village called Elwick, not far from Durham.

What did you study at A Level?
For my A levels I studied Maths, Business Studies along with Product Design (D&T) at Yarm School Sixth Form.

Had you had any prior experience within the construction industry before you enrolled onto PlanBEE?
During the summer holidays last year I took the opportunity to do 3 weeks work experience at a civil engineering firm where I got the chance to see a residential project being built on site. I have always had a passion for design and architecture and I based my A level Product Design projects on architecture.

Why did you choose PlanBEE over a more traditional course?
I chose PlanBEE because I think it is a unique and very beneficial opportunity to begin my career in the construction industry. I was attracted to PlanBEE because of the opportunities to experience lots of different aspects of the construction industry as well as being able to gain valuable skills along the way.

What do you think are good skills or traits to have as a PlanBEE student?
From subjects I studied at A level, I have developed the creative, analytical and logical aspects of my skill set. During that time I volunteered as a helper at a local prep school as well as competing in the Yarm School Apprentice Competition. Both the volunteer work and the competition helped me develop my problem solving, negotiating and team work skills- skills that have helped me in the PlanBEE programme so far.

When you enrolled on the PlanBEE course was there a sector that you were most excited to gain experience in?
Before I joined PlanBEE I had received university offers to study Architecture. However coming on to this course I am looking forward to gaining exposure in more areas than just architecture. I think it will be beneficial for me to keep an open mind and explore and experience each of the sectors.

What have you enjoyed/learned from your time at xsite Architecture?
Currently at xsite I am working on a residential project- Stephenson House, building a 3D model in Revit. This has involved importing a 2D model in from AutoCAD. I am really enjoying learning the different skills and tools used in Revit to produce 3D models and I am looking forward to improving my BIM skills. In addition I have learnt a lot about the different stages a project goes through as well as what the role of the architect is.

What are you interests outside of the course?
Outside of the course I enjoy playing sports such as Tennis and Hockey. I also enjoy walking my dogs in the country side, visiting new places, spending time with friends and family and I am also passionate about photography.

If you are interested in PlanBEE see the website for more details.