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Sad to see you go....

We were sorry to wave goodbye to our Part 1 Graduate Hannah Foster recently after a year working at MGA. Hannah has been a great member of the team since joining us after her degree at UCLAN and we wish her well as she moves on to the next stage of her studies.

We asked Hannah a few questions about her time here

How many months have you spent at MGA? 11 :( Did you enjoy your time in practice? I absolutely loved it. Everybody is so kind and helpful, the atmosphere within the office is very calm and a great environment to work in. What was your highlight? I am not sure I have only one highlight. I will never forget that in the first month or so of me working at MGA I was able to create a design for a job, pitch it to the clients and then submit the planning! Slightly unbelievable when I look back. I would say the INCREDIBLE Christmas Do has to be up there. Getting to know everybody in an environment outside of work was great and at the same time visit and experience a hotel designed and created by MGA was fantastic. The whole experience has been more than expected it to be and I am very glad that I was lucky enough to be mentored by Lee and Katy at university and somehow manage to convince you to give me a job! And a low point? It was a shame that we all had to go on furlough and miss out on valuable time in the office. It wasn’t a bad thing because it kept us all safe but I did miss the office because I was very much enjoying the work I was doing! What is the most important thing you learned during your time at MGA? Not to be embarrassed about having to ask for help. There is always somebody willing to help. It is better to ask for help and learn something new than to sit and struggle. What would your advice be for new graduates looking for work experience? Always try to find a company that is willing to let you work on a multitude of different projects at various stages of work. The more experience you gain over different types of projects, the better. Even though being trusted with a lot of responsibility is terrifying it is 100% the best and quickest way to learn. What was your interview like? My interview was very relaxed. More of an informal chat with the directors so they could determine that I would be a good fit for the office and that I had the general skills to get me started. Was your experience in practice better / worse / the same as your expectations? Definitely better, I never expected to be trusted with the amount and level of work that I have been. I learned so much more than I expected and have gained so much confidence. What could MGA improve upon with Part 1 students in the practice? Is there anything you would have liked to have done but haven't? Honestly, I don’t think there is anything that could be done differently. I had such a great experience, I got to experience so much more than I expected to and learned so much more than I thought I could. The opportunity to work with another part 1 and have a part 2 in the office who has been through it all to give advice and guidance was amazing. Is there anything you would change about architectural education and training?

Architectural Education and training is extremely difficult. I do believe though that it has to be in order to prepare you for the level of knowledge you need to be able to be successful in the field. Something to note, University does not in any way prepare you for what life in an architectural practice will be like, for me I was very lucky that I got to work in a great firm where everybody is willing to help and guide you through the process however I feel that some people probably don’t get that same level of help. If there were to be a change in the system, I would say it needs to come from universities and the preparation of student to transition into the workplace.


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