John Duthaler

Diploma in Architecture

John Duthaler graduated in 1999 with a BA Hons in Architecture and achieved a Diploma in Architecture in 2002.

"I started university straight after taking A-levels in Maths, Art and Design/Technology. I had originally chosen Oxford Brookes as my reserve choice and didn’t get enough points to go to my first-choice university. Now I'm so glad I didn't!"

"I've always had a passion for design and been fascinated by the construction industry but it wasn't until I went to my local Careers Office and went through their series of questions, including the A-levels I was studying at the time, that I really set my sights on being an architect."

"Architecture is a long course, seven years in total with a year in industry which I spent in London. The first three years concentrate on design issues and influences, followed by a years' work placement and two further years on a postgraduate course. Some of the best bits were field trips to New York and Barcelona, hosting exhibitions, making models and generally the enjoyment in designing a potential structure."

Getting a job

I'm currently working as an Architectural Assistant for McBains Cooper in Oxford. The Brookes course is graphic-based and this enabled me to display my design potential in the form of my portfolio.

I am due to take my final professional exams in November to finally be able to call myself an 'architect'. The plan is to pass the exams and one day win some awards for architectural feats and run my own practice.

Best bits

For me it was just the thrill of being independent, meeting hundreds of new people all enjoying that same feeling. I played for both the rugby and football teams at Brookes, socialising heavily with both. I also enjoyed a fun-filled routine, participating in most of the student nights around Oxford and at the University itself.

Advice for others

Think carefully about the course you want to do, you must enjoy it and find it interesting otherwise it will ruin other social aspects of university life. Try and experience every activity that goes on at university - the more people you meet the better the time you'll have.

Forget about the debt, it's only for a few years of your life compared to the 40 plus years you'll have in employment - plenty of time to pay it off.'

John Duthaler

John studied BA Hons Architecture and Diploma in Architecture with the School of Architecture

Some of the best bits were field trips to New York and Barcelona, hosting exhibitions, making models and generally the enjoyment in designing a potential structure.