Head of Architecture and Drue Heinz Curator, The Royal Academy, London
2016 Royal Institute of British Architects Honorary Fellow
“After briefly practising architecture in Sydney, I moved to London and secured a role co-ordinating the architecture program at the Royal Academy of Arts. This entailed a series of lectures and events but there were immense possibilities to grow the program, create a new department and expand the Royal Academy’s remit on architecture.
I have been here now for 12 years and have had four different roles, each of which did not exist before.
The 2014 exhibition Sensing Spaces: Architecture Reimagined was a highlight. It involved a 2000 square-metre installation in the Academy’s Beaux Arts galleries by architects including Kengo Kuma from Japan; Alvaro Siza from Portugal; and Pezo von Ellrichshausen from Chile. The scale of it still surprises me.”
BDesComp (Hons) and University Medal, '14
John C Harsanyi Graduate Medal (International)
2015 Founder and Designer, Simple Collective
“The University of Sydney keeps creating great leaders, so I knew I could meet people with whom I could potentially collaborate.
After graduating, I worked in one of Australia’s largest design and technology consultancies, then on some intense digital projects that serve millions of users worldwide. My start-up focuses on responsive environment and immersive experience and has involved me with some exciting entrepreneurs.
One of my research projects, an interactive installation called TetraBIN, featured in Vivid Sydney 2014, and I participated in Beijing Design Week 2015. The faculty assisted me in implementing the project in China, for which I am very grateful.
The creative and technology sectors are evolving rapidly, so it was very helpful, even during my junior year at university, to connect with industry leaders for mentorship and attend guest lectures by influential people.”
BDes Arch, MArch
“Studying architecture at Sydney has put me in contact with many people within the industry. These contacts led to my initial internships and employment.
After graduating, I moved to Melbourne to work for McBride Charles Ryan. I was exposed to large projects, including the new Victorian Cancer Centre. I won the Emerging Architect prize in the Boral Design Awards. Two years ago I returned to Sydney to work for Andrew Burns Architects. I played a key role in the design and delivery of significant residential and cultural buildings, including Australia House in Japan and the shortlisted proposal for the Green Square Aquatic Centre. My advice is to look for the potential for innovation and experimentation in everything you do. Even if doesn’t lead to a useful outcome, the process will always further your thinking.
BDes Arch, MArch
“The Master of Architecture program provided me with immense opportunities. Under the Hazlet Bequest Travelling Scholarship, I was fortunate to travel to Chile with nine other students to complete a design intensive. I had a unique opportunity to experience a new environment, meet new people and appreciate a different approach to design. I am working in the sphere of heritage, residential, and commercial architecture. Eventually I would like to move into the affordable housing market and my recent career decisions have all centred on this goal. I believe that as an advocate of architecture, it is my duty to bring my expertise to the masses and not just the rich.”
MUrbRPlan ’00, BSc ’99
PhD candidate, Urban Planning and Economics
CEO Greater Sydney Commission
“As the third generation in my family to attend the University of Sydney, I have long been aware that ongoing education, training and development are critical to any leader’s respect for themselves as well as their ability and accountability to others.
My tertiary education has also provided me with the confidence I needed to say I am a fully trained and capable planner with the ability to solve problems. I have worked for local government in the UK, state government in NSW and the London Olympic Delivery Authority, as well as the private sector. Today I work in my family’s property consultancy.
However, some of the most important developments in my career have been as a result of volunteering. Examples include my election as President of the Planning Institute of Australia’s NSW Division and my recent appointment to the Committee for Sydney board at a time when Sydney is gearing up to jump ahead of the curve.
For me, there is no surprise that being one of the chief planners for the London Olympic and Paralympic Games and their Legacy Masterplan was a key highlight. Today, highlights relate to projects or roles that open doors and introduce you to likeminded people. In planning, it is all about people.”
Dr Crighton Nichols
PhD, Design Lab '14
Innovation Lead, Core Technology, PricewaterhouseCoopers Australia
“I embarked on a PhD, more out of my interest in combining social issues with my technological skills than as a step up the corporate ladder.
A PhD is a great way to develop the self-discipline required to deliver a large, complex, mostly solitary project.
I studied part time while working on a range of related startup ventures, including One Laptop per Child Australia, an organisation dedicated to reducing the digital divide in remote communities.
A highlight of my PhD involved engaging with very wise and humble Indigenous Elders to understand how to encourage the appropriation of Western ICTs by First Australian communities – the world’s oldest continuing cultures.
My first role since attaining my PhD has been with PwC Australia, where I lead an innovation team within the core technology group.
I’ve hired two graduates from the University of Sydney’s Design Computing program and we are now Platinum sponsors of the University’s annual Graduate Show.
We’re keen to hire creative thinkers to explore digital disruption and the opportunities it affords.”
Master of Design Science (Audio and Acoustics) 2002
Founder and Chief Executice, Auditoria
“As a professional musician I’ve always loved the performing arts. I embarked on my master’s degree to differentiate myself from my competitors in events design. I now confidently say to clients “this is what the result will be” based on mathematics rather."
I started my own audio company, Auditoria, in 2004, and we are now world leaders in the design and direction of audio systems for major broadcast events such as the 2012 London Olympic Games opening and closing ceremonies.
I’ve encouraged others to undertake the master’s program and I’ve hired a graduate because I know the program equips you with professional skills that make you immediately employable. As a consultancy business, where human capital is our currency, this has major commercial benefits.”