The ability to imagine is a powerful trait in any occupation. The ability to turn a visualisation into a creation, however, requires the appropriate skills and guidance.
While creativity is important, it's the foundations and knowledge gained in the design stage that ensure what is innovative in one's mind becomes practical in reality.
Advanced Building Technology Senior Educator David Hulett understands the point well. "We have a quality course with a quality outcome," he is keen to state. Helping oversee Building Design (Architectural) at Holmesglen, David works against the backdrop of possibility and potential every day. "This is an industry of passion."
Reflected in the overall aims, the course, like the topics covered, encourages students to take a proactive approach.
"We're trying to teach the students to be independent, to be able to think, to be able to go into a job and have initiative," David says.
With about 50% of students going onto work and the other half entering university, Holmesglen marks itself as an important part of the professional pathway.
"We teach the technical component that is required to get a job. To understand how to build a building, how to get a building through town planning and building permits," David notes.
Accordingly, having processes and avenues in place to help students during and after study is important. Holmesglen's Graduate Employment Service assists with sourcing jobs, while the department holds a Graduate Exhibition Evening every semester where potential employers are invited.
Similarly, the course focuses on project based learning. David observes that he encounters a range of students from a range of circumstances. Building Design attracts everyone from students in their 70's, mature aged pupils looking to re-skill to carpentry graduates looking for a "pathway beyond the tools."
"You see students go through that light bulb moment where they realise this is what they want to do and they passionately move on."
Previously, David taught an elderly student from Sudan, who enrolled part-time. The student, working in a factory to support his way through the course and a family of five, went onto graduate and work across the country in various professional capacities.
"To see that he was the first person in his family, perhaps in his community, to have a proper qualification [was wonderful]," David recalls.
David's experience as an architect, specifically with computer based technology, allows him to relate to the industry needs. Additionally, most of the staff run their own businesses. Holmesglen also works closely with the Building Designers Association of Victoria to maintain the relevance of the course.
"We work with employers quite closely to make sure we're doing the right thing in our course, by our students, so they can do the work when they come out."