Richmond School pupil’s work experience placement leads to offer

From left to right: Ian Holme, director at Harris Irwin, Tommy Callender, Rob McCartney, architect, and Ben Garlick, architect.

A student’s successful work experience week at a firm of Richmondshire architects has led to an offer of future employment.

Tommy Callender, 17, a year 13 student at Richmond Sixth Form College, spent a week at Aske-based Harris Irwin in the summer.

Prior to his placement, Tommy, from Richmond, had only watched a few episodes of Grand Designs but his interest in design and construction grew during the placement, leaving him in no doubt that a career in architecture was for him.

Ian Holme, director at Harris Irwin, later invited Tommy and his mum to a meeting, where a number of opportunities were offered to him.

These included the option of working for a year to gain valuable experience before he heads off to university, placements during university holidays as well as a full-year placement.

The staff at Harris Irwin had all been impressed with Tommy, recognising his ability to quickly interpret briefs, his eye for detail and natural skill using the design packages, coupled with a strong technical understanding.

Ian said: “Our practice has grown significantly over the last few years.

“We are continuing to expand and are always looking out for the next generation of designers to future-proof the business. Tommy quickly adapted to working life in our busy practice, got on well with everyone and grasped every opportunity to deepen his knowledge and develop his skills.

“We are really looking forward to honing Tommy’s talents and making him an official member of the Harris Irwin team.”

Tommy, who is currently studying maths, design and technology and computer science, said: “Working with Harris Irwin has been a fantastic experience and I have learned so much about the field of planning and design, gaining a very positive insight into the processes involved.

“I really loved the design aspects of the job and the overall satisfaction of creating your own building.

“I enjoyed being a part of the team and feeling that I was genuinely helping out.”