Aaron Poupard

Aaron Poupard, seated
Aaron Poupard, Top Designs alumnus

Visual Communication Design
Top Designs 2005

2020 – Architect

After exhibiting in Top Designs 2005, I went on to study a Bachelor of Design and Construction Management at Deakin University, followed by a Master of Architecture. I am now an Associate and Project Architect at ARM Architects, working primarily on large public buildings within the arts and culture sectors. The most notable of these are Hamer Hall, the Shrine of Remembrance, the Outdoor Stage in the Gold Coast and the University of Melbourne Arts West building. I am currently working in Queensland on building a 10,000 m2 contemporary art gallery for the Gold Coast. One day I may study an MBA in order to assist in the business side of architecture. I would one day like to be a director of a company, hopefully this one.

What have you been up to since Top Designs 2005?

I decided to take a gap year straight after school, which was a great opportunity to think about what I really wanted to do with my career. I am very glad I did, because I decided to undertake my double degree in Architecture and Construction Management at Deakin University in Geelong. A further six years of education after high school was certainly a challenge, but it set me up for a great career path. I worked at ARM from when I was in my fourth year of university, so it was great to get experience on the job while still studying. I travelled most summers during uni, working hard to then be able to take three months off. I did a short internship in China when I was in my third year, which was an incredible experience from a personal and professional perspective.

I feel very fortunate to have chosen this career path and I have worked really hard, from the moment of leaving school, to achieve the goals I set for myself. I have made a lot of lifelong friends through my work. It is important to remember that you spend a lot of your life at work, so treating everyone as though they could be influential in your life forever is key.

Do you feel that Top Designs had any impact on your next steps, and do you have any advice for people wanting to work in your field?

I was selected for Top Designs in 2005 for a 3D board game. This is hardly relevant to what I do now; however, the sense of recognition from others outside the school environment was extremely beneficial. The exhibition taught me that the world of design is much wider than the four walls you work within and it exposed me to a lot of brilliant work that others were doing. It motivated me to always do the best that I possibly can.

My advice for anyone wanting to pursue a career in architecture is to be prepared for a long and slow journey – this profession is not for the faint-hearted. It takes a minimum of five years of study, in one of the most gruelling courses. However, the successes far outweigh the hardships – there is truly no better feeling than seeing people in a building that you have worked on.

Architecture to me is like mega sculpture. I love that there can be so many ideas and concepts embedded within buildings. But they also need to be fundamentally functional!

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