The Life of an Architect

The Life of an Architect

Edward Johnston (L6, L)

Old Cheltonian, Nigel Dancey (BH, 1983), returned to Boyne House to present a talk titled ‘The Life of an Architect’ to current pupils as part of the Old Cheltonian Careers Programme. Mr Dancey is a Senior Executive at the world-renowned and incredibly successful high-tech architectural firm of Foster + Partners. Sir Norman Foster, the creator of Foster + Partners, is one of Britain’s most prolific architects of his generation and in 1999 was awarded the Pritzker Architecture Prize, often referred to as the ‘Nobel Prize of Architecture’.

Mr Dancey has now worked for Foster + Partners for over 25 years and has been privileged to have worked side-by-side with some of the biggest names in the architecture industry, including Sir Norman Foster himself on numerous occasions. He has worked in many fields and areas throughout his career: designing, managing and ultimately building some of the most impressive, leading architectural projects in the world. Foster + Partners are highly regarded for their sustainable, hi-tech, boundary pushing projects created all over the globe. Mr Dancey spoke to us about some of his greatest achievements during his many years at the company, such as designing and managing the building of the McLaren Technology Centre, a palace built for the president of Kazakhstan and the company’s plans to build a new airport in Mexico City that will revolutionise the efficiency and ultimately the overall experience of air travel.

What I found most interesting about the talk was finding out the range of jobs and skills needed from different people in order to make the whole process, from design to construction, possible. Mr Dancey’s presentation was really inspirational and this has encouraged me to search for work experience in architecture and to potentially pursue a career in this sector or related design or engineering.

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