As you may or may not know, a few weeks ago Su Butcher and I created something called Architect Map. I’m not going to go over old ground on how we have got to this point as it has already been expertly documented on Su’s Just Practising blog, in Studio Em‘s blog, and in the press such as Arch Daily and World Architecture News.
The purpose of this blog piece is to let you know about the recent addition to the map known as the AEC Graduate Map, which we believe takes Architect Map into an exciting new direction.
The past influencing the present…
10 years ago I left University with my 1st Class Hounours degree in Project Management and embarked upon a career in the AEC Industry. I was fortunate in that I had excellent guidance and knew the practice that I wanted to work for. However, during my time at University I shared a house with six other friends, most of whom were studying Architecture. When it came to networking and trying to find work experience or jobs at the end of the course, it was a real issue for my friends, not just in finding a job, but first even knowing who existed in the marketplace and where they were located.
The benfit of Twitter is the ability to directly connect and engage with others quickly, easily and informally. A key step in making most decisions is knowing who is out in the big wide world to talk to, and then filtering these results down to those that are most suitable, something which was a struggle for my friends at University.
Back to the Present…
Fast forward 10 years and here we are, having created a fairly popular, yet still in its infancy, Architect Map that is growing by the day. Whilst it is currently mapping the AEC industry, from Architects to Manufacturers to Contractors, it struck us that whilst this is great in the professional world, wouldn’t it be fantastic to find out who the up and coming stars of the future are by tapping into the AEC world that exists in Universities and Schools.
Hence, the birth of the AEC Graduate Map, a Google map which allows any student in the AEC field, who uses Twitter, to plot themselves on our map. The Architect Map portal allows students in the AEC field to search around our maps and connect not only with fellow students with similar interests, but also provide them with a knowledgable starting point from which they can make key decisions and engage with professionals in the industry.
The Map is live and in use!
It’s great to see AEC Graduate Map already being populated, and in just a few hours it had racked up nearly 500 views. Our first student was Kirsty Cassels (@koistycassels), who is also mapped on the Architect Map, is studying at the Glasgow School of Art (@gsofa) and working part time at LMA Architects (@lmaarchitects).
Then we have Matthew Westley (@theArchtist) and Joe Morizzo (@joemorizzo) also early adopters of the platform. With comments and enthusiasm from people such as Matthew, who knows where together we may be able to take this.
Using your Bio to say who you are…
Taking this one step further, with the use of the Google Map Placeholder, a Student is able to update their Bio to include a whole range of information, from how to connect with them on Social Media platforms to providing their CV and Portfolio for potential employers to see. The boundaries really are only limited by creativity and innovative thinking. Take a look at Joe’s bio created last night. You can begin to see how your Bio can become a central point holding key information about yourself for others to see.
I think back to my friends at University who spent countless hours searching the internet for information on who they could approach, who was nearby, and who to contact and think that wouldn’t this have been a great tool for them to use as a starting point. With the Architect Map, we are starting to build a knowledge base from which a lot of this can be achieved.
I think this is all powerful and exciting stuff, and I look forward to seeing how this new extension to Architect Map aids the next generation of the AEC industry.