16th February 2023

Architectural students

Four architectural students recently spent a day at Harris Irwin’s head office as part of the mentoring they are receiving from Associate Architect Rob McCartney.

Freddie Downes, 19, Thamanda Malmberg, 21, Zafirah Sadiq, 20 are all currently studying at Newcastle University, whilst Tom Hellier, 19, is at Northumbria University.

They are on the RIBA mentoring scheme which is offered to undergraduate second year students from both Schools of Architecture, and this is the 5th year that Harris Irwin has been involved.

Rob, who is also Chair of the RIBA Tees Valley branch, started mentoring the quartet in October 2022, with regular sessions being undertaken via video call, but this was the first time they had visited our office in North Yorkshire.

During the day, Rob introduced them to the team at Harris Irwin, as well as showing them examples of projects we are currently working on for our clients in the care sector.

All four said they found the day very interesting and have learned a lot during the mentoring process, which concludes in March.

Freddie said: “It’s been great to learn from Rob and to see how an architectural practice operates.”

Thamanda said: “I have found the mentoring scheme invaluable and I know it will stand me in good stead as I continue my degree.”

Lafrirah said: “I have enjoyed being mentored by Rob and to see how a specialist practice like Harris Irwin works.”

Tom added: “I had never considered how much thought goes into the design of a care home, especially when it comes to helping people with dementia, so it’s been a great learning experience for me.”

Rob said: “The student mentoring programme goes from strength to strength and as a Practice we are pleased to be playing our part in helping to develop the architects of the future.

“The quality of the architectural courses at both universities is clear and there’s no reason why any one of the four on the current programme couldn’t end up working permanently at Harris Irwin in the future.”