Taking flight

Picture of Adrian Taylor and Peg Quarry

Pictured: Peg Quarry with the inaugural scholarship recipient, Adrian Taylor

UTS students are spreading their wings and gaining invaluable international experience with the help of the Neville Quarry Travel Scholarship.

For Master of Architecture student Amanda Beck, receiving the Neville Quarry Travel Scholarship has allowed her to travel to the Netherlands to study for a semester at the University of Technology Delft, where she hopes to pursue her passion and further expand her knowledge of architectural innovation in heritage building restoration and adaptive reuse.

“I am the first in my family to go to university. My parents never had the opportunity to travel abroad, and it has always been a goal of mine to use my love of learning and my degree to experience different countries and cultures and learn from them,” she says.

“The scholarship recognises the commitment and passion that our dad and husband had to learning, to travel, and to his students.” – Kit Quarry

Established in memory of influential educator Neville Quarry, the University’s first professor of architecture, the Neville Quarry Travel Scholarship provides students with financial support to undertake an international study experience, such as a global exchange program, field or studio trip or independent study tour in the closing stages of their degree.

Professor Quarry, who passed away in 2004 after a brief battle with cancer, educated many of Australia’s leading architects. He was a passionate advocate for the importance of travel and international exposure as part of a student’s education, and gained international recognition for his work training young architects and fostering global collaboration.

For his family, friends, colleagues and former students, establishing the scholarship has been an opportunity to ‘give back’ in memory of Quarry’s remarkable contribution to the profession, and honour the incredible impact he had on their own lives.

Quarry’s former student, Angelo Candalepas, says he feels a duty to give the same opportunities to the next generation of students, as were afforded to him.

“Neville remained my mentor through important periods of my postgraduate learning; and he was hell-bent on having me travel overseas,” he says.

“It is only years later, when we reflect on what happened in our lives, that we are able to see, from that clear vantage point that comes with time, why our lives are the way they are.

“My travel and his advice was something that changed my life forever.”

True to its intent, the scholarship has also proved formative for Master of Architecture graduate David Hristoforidis, who embarked on a travelling design studio through Denmark, the Czech Republic, Poland and then to Germany in 2016, exploring contemporary issues including affordable housing and the accommodation of displaced migrants in Berlin.

Hristoforidis says the opportunity to observe the sensitive renovation of bombed structures, including the restoration of Reichstag building that houses the German Parliament, “has had a great influence on my approach to heritage intervention in an Australian context”.

“It’s one thing to read about the Cold War in books, but to travel to Berlin and walk amongst the preserved ‘scars’ of its past was a surreal experience – incomparable to seeing it in pictures,” he says. “It has been an invaluable addition to a challenging but rewarding degree, and a formative step into my future as an architect.”

Similarly, the scholarship’s inaugural recipient, Adrian Taylor, says travelling to Dhaka in Bangladesh to learn more about collective community spaces and their impact on social structures and urban organisation in his final year of study was eye-opening.

“The Neville Quarry Travel Scholarship enabled me to experience another culture and understand its architecture beyond what could ever be found in a drawing. I would urge everyone to engage with these opportunities, as there is no substitution.”

Speaking on behalf of the Quarry family, Neville’s daughter Kit says, “The scholarship recognises the commitment and passion that our dad and husband had to learning, to travel, and to his students. He would be very pleased to know that his tradition continues through the scholarship.”