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Collaborating in the built environment

Daniel Hellyer, BSc Architecture graduate, shares how he combined a passion for construction, design and medicine into his studies and career – and how being part of the School of the Built Environment helped him to grow.

Choosing architecture at the University of Reading

When deciding what to study at university, Daniel found himself at an unusual crossroads. 

“I wasn't sure what I wanted to do to begin with. A lot of my family are involved in medicine, but my dad is a carpenter and joiner, so I've always experienced the construction projects first hand. He used to take me on site, which helped increase my interest in designing the built environment." 

These experiences led Daniel to identify architecture as his subject of choice, which would soon shape his journey to the University of Reading. 

“I came to study at Reading because of my experience on the Open Day. Speaking to academics in the School of the Built Environment, from both Architecture and Construction Management and Engineering, it was clear that their enthusiasm and knowledge was higher than other places I went to visit. They were interested in why you wanted to study at Reading, which made it feel more personal to my interests."

Close-knit community

On the learning environment at Reading, Daniel adds; 

"Collaboration is definitely at the heart of everything. Across our design studio projects, we were all given the same brief but encouraged to explore an area we were interested in. This enabled us to learn, interrogate and create architectural designs together, forming a close-knit community. 

"This was the best learning experience of my life. The course gives you a collective, holistic view of architecture, and each module is designed to prepare you for your future career."

Applying studies into practice

After graduating from Reading and having completed several placements with HNW Architects, Daniel took up a position working with the company as an Architectural Assistant. He's upbeat about how his time at Reading set him up for success. 

“I'd say everything I've learnt at Reading has come into play at some point during my work. Communication skills developed within studio environments has enabled me to discuss work with colleagues and clients, responding to the needs and requirements of a design brief." 

Daniel remains passionate about medicine, seeking to apply this where possible within the built environment, in the form of hospital design and wellbeing. 

“You can see how much influence architecture and the built environment has on individuals. If you can have impact in places of real need, such as hospitals, it can make a huge difference to both those needing the medical attention and their families." 

Discover more about our BSc Architecture course

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