MSc in Architectural Design for the Conservation of Built HeritageNoemi Giovelli

Noemi has been awarded a University of Strathclyde Research Excellence (REA) Studentship enabling her to pursue her studies at doctoral level. She will pursue her interdisciplinary subject under the supervision of Cristina Gonzalez-Longo in the Department of Architecture and Dr Christine Davidson from the Department of Pure and Applied Chemistry.

What made you choose Strathclyde?

The Department of Architecture offered a great master’s degree programme. Besides, Strathclyde is a University with an excellent reputation, very research-oriented and the Faculty of Engineering is one of the highest-ranking engineering faculties in the UK.

Which aspects of the course appealed to you the most?

The course offers a unique approach to the practice of Architectural Conservation; focusing on the planning stage of the intervention, it promotes a practical approach based upon the accurate survey and analysis of the building structure and value. My choice was mainly guided by these aspects, which I consider essential to competently operate in this sector.

Have you acquired any new unique skill sets while studying here?

I had the opportunity to integrate the diagnostic analysis of construction material with the planning and design stage of the project.

What are your stand-out experiences, whether academic or social?

I collaborated with the British Geological Survey and Historic Environment Scotland (lead public body for the investigation and preservation of Scotland’s historic environment) to carry out independent research and laboratory testing on stone materials. The outcomes led to the development of a research proposal for the pursuit of my studies at doctoral level.

What is your experience of Glasgow and Scotland?

My experience in Glasgow was great, I love the energy of the city and the spirit of the locals. I found Scotland to be a welcoming and friendly country with strong traditions, stunning landscapes and an outstanding history.

Are you aware of particular qualities or skills that you developed at Strathclyde that have enabled your successful career?

Besides the core skills and competencies that I acquired during my studies, what I really appreciated and helped throughout my studies was the constant encouragement I received to develop an independent approach. The possibility of effectively verifying any assumption was strongly supported and enabled by the large provision of technical facilities and guidance of numerous experts in various fields.

Can you give some details about your career path from graduation through to your current position?

I pursued my studies in Conservation in Florence, specializing in the diagnostic stage at the Chemistry and Industrial Chemistry department of the University of Genoa with a research thesis on the application of Chemometrics to X-ray Fluorescence spectroscopy data for the characterization of inorganic pigments in mixtures. I later joined the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Strathclyde, where I graduated from the Master of Science degree programme in Architectural Design for the Conservation of Built Heritage. My dissertation focused on the decay processes and consolidation of carbonate-cemented sandstone exposed to polluted environments. The project later received a Research Excellence Award for the prosecution of research at doctoral level. 

What aspect of studying in this Department would you like to promote to potential students?

It offers a stimulating international environment, oriented towards innovation with special attention for sustainability and environmental awareness.

What advice would you give to potential students thinking about studying at Strathclyde?

This is an excellent University, where new students will find a challenging environment to prove themselves and their skills. My recommendation would be to fully embrace this opportunity; it represents an excellent way of exploring your own vocation and potential.

Do you think Strathclyde students offer anything unique?

The University of Strathclyde promotes an approach strongly oriented to the employability of its students, forming individuals able to adapt to different positions and requirements and capable of offering a personal and unique contribution to the present employment market.

What are your ambitions short/or long term?

I have always had a major interest in research, and I hope it will lead to a small contribution to my field, but only time will tell.