Every two years, selected UT engineering and architecture students travel to London to learn state-of-the-art building technologies through an intriguing study abroad program. This year, 16 students participated from late May to mid-June. The program, directed by CAEE Senior Lecturer Gregory Brooks, is an immersion into contemporary architectural engineering issues through the ARE 377K Emerging Technologies course.
London is headquarters to many prestigious engineering firms including Arup, Buro Happold, WSP, Expedition Engineering and several others. Architects Norman Foster, Richard Rogers, Zaha Hadid, Heatherwick, and SOM. Many other icons of contemporary design are London-based as well. The city is also home to world-class construction and fabrication teams who build these complex and innovative structures.
For four weeks, students participating in the program lived in central London and studied at the University College London. Each day they attended lectures in engineering and architecture offices and/or toured the city’s new buildings, sometimes led by engineering and design team members.
The students toured the recently completed Shard Tower, Olympic Park, and Thames Cable Car. They also observed the Leadenhall Tower under construction. Read the students' blog.
In the classroom, seminar discussions were held. Each student also wrote a 10-20 page research paper focusing on a specific building or design technology of their choice. All students were paired with an engineer or architect as a mentor, which complements their library and electronic research.
In addition to being multi-disciplinary, the students ranged in age from 2nd-year to graduate students. The age-mix is also intentional: the younger students benefit by being inspired early in their education and support the class with general research, while the older students engage in technical conversations with professionals and perform advanced research.
The Emerging Technologies ARE 377K course is sponsored by the Cockrell School of Engineering and offered through the UT Study Abroad Office. The course, which is a Maymester (summer semester, starting in May) was first launched in 2007.