Last month we launched the 2018-19 FLUID Diversity Mentoring Programme with a fantastic kick-off event at the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA)...
We welcomed this year’s cohort of mentors and mentees, who shared their aims and targets for the coming year. Past participants, sponsors and supporters also joined us to share their experiences and find out the latest news from Built By Us.
We heard from key figures in the built environment sector about the importance and uniqueness of FLUID as a programme. David Ogunmuyiwa, Partner at ArchitectureDoingPlace and the London Mayor’s Design Advocate, gave a fascinating keynote address. As an award-winning architect, lecturer and writer, he is in a unique position to comment on the state of the industry as a whole. He called for a widening of participation in the sector and emphasised the importance of talent retention and opportunity for progression so that individuals from under-represented backgrounds can succeed. He also praised FLUID for increasing representation and inclusion of minorities across the sector, as well as addressing the economic benefits of opening up architecture and related industries to wider audiences.
The FLUID effect
Designed to address retention and development of talented practitioners in the built environment, FLUID began back in 2012 and has supported individuals from diverse backgrounds ever since.
Over a period of 12 months, the scheme pairs volunteer mentors with mentees from across all levels and all built environment disciplines. It particularly seeks to support and encourage those under-represented in professional and managerial disciplines including women, Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) and LGBT+ practitioners, and professionals with disabilities and those from socio-economically disadvantaged backgrounds.
At last month’s event, attendees heard from current mentors and mentees about how FLUID had helped them to develop and progress in their careers. The closing presentations were provided by architect and mentee Baldeep Heer and mentor/mentee partners Alastair Keyte and Tristan Hartley.
Ensuring lasting success
Built By Us is on a mission to address diversity and inclusion at all levels, across all built environment sectors. FLUID is a key part of this process, aiming to encourage networking, providing careers support and creating role models. For mentees, joining the scheme is a positive step to empowering themselves – participants are challenging themselves, broadening their horizons to gain insight and perspective, and to aspire to the next stage in their career. For mentors, it is a chance to develop and grow their own skills, learning from those who are new to the industry and offering support and advice.
FLUID is free to access and ensures the industry doesn’t lose talented individuals due to lack of support and careers guidance. Volunteer mentors give their time, year after year, and are essential to the success of the project. Together, this year’s cohort of mentors and mentees will help each other to make a difference in their profession and reach their personal goals.
We’re are delighted to announce that EPR Architects are Gold Sponsors of the 2018 - 2019 programme, we thank them for their continued support.
We are always looking for supporters for FLUID – either as a mentor, mentee or in a sponsorship capacity, contact us to find out about how we can customise gold, sliver and bronze packages for your organisation or join the FLUID 500 Club. If you would like more information in how to be included in the next cohort, please contact us.