What our students say

Les Lismore

Les Lismore

Why did you decide to study Building Information Management MSc at Westminster?

I wanted to study BIM, as it is a subject I find particularly interesting. I feel this is an exciting time to be involved in BIM, as the leaders within the construction industry and Government are seeking to achieve something that has been a long time coming, and has never really been attempted on the scale that BIM will require.

Westminster was one of very few universities offering an MSc course in BIM. The structure of the course was ideal for me, as the modules were all in the evening, so, although it has meant putting my social life on hold for a while, I am able to study with minimum impact on my working day.

What do you enjoy most about the course?

I feel the course has been structured in such a way as to be constantly stimulating, exciting and relevant to the way we communicate now. The ‘BeginBIM’ series of public seminars which took place at the University has allowed us as students to participate in live events and debates with the driving forces behind BIM. We get to meet and discuss BIM with the authors of the books we read and the policymakers that are shaping the future of the construction industry. 

Describe a typical day on the course?

The Wednesday evening session can be anything from doing a presentation to one's peers, attending a seminar on one of the aspects of BIM, or an online twitter storm, where the topic of the previous week’s seminar is discussed in open forum with students and representatives of the various BIM bodies, and any interested parties. The events and tweet chats are widely publicised and tend to be lively, topical, informative and often witty discussions. Other possibilities for our weekly BIM session include receiving feedback on the assignment from Rob, our tutor, straightforward lectures on a particular aspect of BIM, or group work developing our coursework. No two weeks are the same.

What is the most interesting project you have worked on?

The implementation of a BIM development plan for a firm wishing to achieve Level 2 BIM and prepare for Level 3 has been extremely interesting, as it puts theory into practice in the real world, with a real world client, who will make a decision as to whether to invest their firm’s money into putting our proposals to the test. The level of collaboration between the students on the course has been both surprising and highly rewarding. We all come from different areas of the construction industry and by inputting our expertise, I am finding we are all able to learn a lot from each other.

How do you think the University of Westminster will help you in your career?

The University of Westminster acts as a hub for prospective employers to get to know the students. There are regular career fairs and organised events to link students to firms, so there is a strong connection between the University and the industry. I have found that the University of Westminster is well respected in the industry, and given the cutting edge approach Westminster takes to education, I feel that reputation will continue to grow.

The depth of knowledge I have acquired in the areas of economics, procurement, risk management, commercial management and corporate management, as well as a practical and working knowledge of BIM I fell put me in a strong position to gain a position in senior management, if I decide to follow that route.

What advice would you give to students planning to study this course at the University of Westminster?

Book your place now! You will not regret it.

What do you do now?

My speciality is 3D modelling and space planning. This may involve anything from co-ordinating building services, interior design or space planning an environment for commercial, industrial or leisure facilities, inclusive design of the built environment to ensure it is accessible for people with a range of disabilities, using a range of software programmes including Revit, Microstation, AutoCAD, Rhino and Grasshopper.

I am also a sculptor, working by hand in the classical manner using traditional materials such as stone and bronze, as well as using CAD/CAM programming, 3 axis modelling and laser scanning to produce sculptural objects for computer designed concepts. I am particularly interested in exploring animatronic and kinetic sculpture. My work is regularly exhibited worldwide, and is held in a number of private collections in Europe, the Middle East and the US.

Ignacio Diaz-Maroto Rivas

Alumnus Ignacio Dias Maroto-Rivas

Why did you decide to study Building Information Management MSc at Westminster?

I chose the course becasue of its promise to deliver invaluable knowledge and skills on the management side of building and information management – and the University of Westminster delivered. 

The University of Westminster has been at the forefront of the construction industry and has been one of the first institutions in the capital to provide a BIM MSc course. This was exactly the course I wanted to attend. Even with high expectations, I have been pleasantly surprised. 

You currently work in the Built Environment industry. Please give a short description of what you do?

I am an architect at Hunters in London. I design and help manage projects through different phases of delivery.

What do you enjoy most about the course?

I have to admit that what surprised me the most, and made the course so enjoyable, was the style of teaching. Lecturer, Rob Garvey, has made use of social media to enhance the reach of his classroom and has catapulted university teaching into the 21st century.

Describe a typical day on the course?

I found that there was no real typical day. There were conferences, lectures and twitter storms! It was varied and stimulating throughout the course. 

What is the most interesting project you have worked on?

The coursework is well structured. We received two assignments to generate both a diagnostic tool and implementation plans for BIM in AEC companies. Both assignments were extremely relevant to market requirements and were a stimulus for deep research.

How do you think the University of Westminster will help you in your career?

The University of Westminster has provided me with knowledge and skills that are currently sought after in the market place. I now feel I have an edge over my industry peers.

What advice would you give to students planning to study this course?

Remember to be proactive. Make the most of it, work hard and appreciate that the more you put in to the experience, the more you will get back from it.