Collaboration is the beating heart of effective vocational education spaces, an architect has said.
Mark Freeman, from specialist educational architecture firm Gray Puksand, recently completed a $5.1 million VET facility situated in Melbourne’s Somerville Secondary College. Freeman said he worked closely with VET specialists and Christopher Lloyd, the school’s principal, to understand the types of spaces the tech college needed.
He further explained it’s this collaborative approach to design that creates a similarly collaborative learning space for students.
“Many technical schools of the past have tended to focus on traditional skills like woodwork or metalwork and have tended to be reasonably male-centric in a way,” Freeman said. “Part of what we wanted to do here was show not just the school but the region that there were pathways for female students to participate in what have been traditionally male-oriented domains like plumbing and building construction. [We also wanted to promote] broad male and female student understanding of how various skills and types vocational training relate to a much broader area of building construction and technology.”
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