Our time at Muse: An eye-opening experience into placemaking

21.03.24 4 min read by Jamie Logan & Katelin Allen, T-level Students

Back in October 2023, we announced a grassroots partnership with Oldham College to provide T-level students with a wide range of experiences and career paths within the property industry.

The first of its kind, the partnership provides students studying Design, Surveying and Planning, the opportunity to work with Muse and other partner organisations in the built environment.

The announcement followed Muse being named as Oldham Council’s place partner to bring forward a new transformative neighbourhood in the town centre, which is set to deliver 2,000 new homes and create new jobs and opportunities for communities across the town to thrive and prosper.

Jamie Logan and Katelin Allen are the first two students from Oldham College to benefit from the new programme.

 

From a young age we have both been exposed to the construction industry, and it was always a career we wanted to pursue. Exploring our own path in the built environment, we have been studying for a T-Level in Design, Surveying and Planning – equivalent to three A-Levels – at Oldham College.

Following a partnership between the College and Muse, we’ve had the opportunity to experience what day-to-day life is like working at a national placemaker and other partner organisations over the last few months.

Working with the team based in the North West for three days a week, with the other two days split between partners Jon Matthews Architects and Arcadis, the experience has opened our eyes to placemaking and the wide range of career opportunities there are within the industry.

T Level students
Katelin and Jamie take a tour of New Bailey, Salford

We have been able to get involved in projects across our region. This includes site visits to Blackpool where we were able to see the delivery of a new place first hand, project management tasks around the masterplan for St Helens, and supporting the transformation of Oldham town centre – our home town.

The entire Muse team has been open and welcoming. We’ve shadowed Project and Development Managers, but everyone from the senior leadership team down has been generous with their time, enabled us to feel part of the team, and supported our contributions to discussions. The range of meetings we have sat on focused on different work stream areas such as pre-start, design, and site progress, has allowed us to develop a great understanding of the parts involved in delivering large scale projects.

Working with Muse, the impact regeneration and placemaking can have is clear. We are both passionate about sustainability and community impact, so it has been the perfect place to learn. Everybody at Muse is focussed on creating attractive, diverse, and sustainable places.

Learning about the various sustainability credentials, such as Passivhaus, NABERS, and BREEAM accreditation, and how Muse looks to deliver places which meet these standards through careful design and considered decisions has been remarkable.

As we prepare for our exams in the summer, this experience has benefitted us hugely. Working with Muse has aided our development and only added to our enthusiasm to pursue a career in the regeneration industry. With the options of a degree apprenticeship, or university, we’re looking forward to the next chapter in our journey.

And for those who might be looking to pursue a career in the industry, or work experience at Muse as part of their T-Level studies, go for it. It might be daunting, but everybody is there to help, so don’t be afraid to ask questions, be confident, and show an eagerness to get involved.

This will help you get the most value out of a brilliant opportunity and potentially open your eyes to the amazing opportunities within regeneration.

T Level students
Katelin and Jamie

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