Janina Isaacs

Janina Isaacs

Why did you choose to study Architectural Engineering at Leeds?

I have always had a passion for architecture, but I excelled in maths. After speaking to various professionals in industry, they advised me that Engineering was a far more stable career path to follow in recent years. I chose Architectural Engineering as it seemed to cover both areas and interests of mine. Not many other universities offered this course and Leeds is also known to be an excellent university for engineering students, both during and after education. 

Did you enjoy the project work?

Although the Architectural Engineering projects can be difficult, I was very proud of my final achievements. I designed two buildings fully, considering architectural, structural and building services aspects. In reality this process would be done by several different groups, yet I was able to cover the knowledge on all of these areas through the course, which is invaluable for future design scenarios. It also helped me to develop new skills on programs which are currently being used on real high profile projects in industry. 

Did you undertake a work placement?

I was very fortunate to be a scholar on the Laing O'Rourke scheme. This meant that every summer I had the opportunity to work with them for 10 weeks on a variety of different projects all over the country. This gave me a great insight into the industry and also allowed me to integrate my knowledge and learning from university into the projects. The computer programming skills developed from my architecture project (using software such as Revit and AutoCad) were extremely useful. BIM is relatively new in the construction world so not many people in industry know how to use these programs which meant my skillset was invaluable to the company.

How have you found life in Leeds?

Leeds is a great city to live in. Everything is so close together! Living accommodation, campus and the city centre are all within walking distance, which is especially useful if you don't have a car. It also makes going out easier as everything is on your doorstep. The new Leeds Trinity Centre also has great places to eat and Headingley is great if you fancy something a little more quirky. 

What are your plans after graduation?

 I have been offered a place on the Laing O'Rourke graduate programme. I have been appointed as Assistant Architect working with the Engineering Excellence Group. Through this I hope to gain my chartership with IstructE.