Message from National SONA President

2020, what a year!

As I’m sure you’ve experienced, things have changed. Our education, much like our profession, has faced some radical changes in response to the current pandemic. Despite the changing circumstances all of us at SONA are committed to providing students and recent graduates like yourselves continued opportunities to enable collaboration, communication and engagement. Your local SONA representatives have been working hard to organise digital events, and I am pleased to announce that Upscale, one of SONA’s annual flagship events  will  be delivered this year via a virtual platform over the weekend of the 23–24th May. 

In addition to organising locally and nationally held online events, we continue to advocate on behalf of students across Australia. As president, I recently presented to the Association of Architecture Schools of Australasia (AASA), presenting—with the perception and help of our representatives across the country—student perspectives in the wake of recent changes to the delivery of our education whilst simultaneously advocating for the needs and expectations of students of the built environment.

It is an extremely difficult time for all of us, and no-one will be able to handle the situation perfectly. Whilst we accept that circumstances can always be improved, we must collectively recognise the importance of communication and understanding during these times. Universities and faculties of the built environment are continuing to refine how they deliver education digitally, and with our help and communication, this can only improve as we progress throughout the year.

Jacques Chevrant-Breton

Staying connected has never been more important, and with this in mind here’s a few important resources we’d like to share with you:

  • With so many digital events flying around, we at SONA have developed a SONA calendar for you to view all of these in one place. If you hear of any digital talks / events that we haven’t already posted on the calendar, please let us know.
  • The new SONA website is now live! We have been working incredibly hard over the past few months to finally launch our website with you, please check in regularly as we will be adding resources and important information regarding employment and education over the next few months.
  • For those that have had their employment situation affected due to covid-19, the Institute has a number of useful resources available to you as members including a dedicated Covid-19 resources page and  HR HUB where you can find useful resources on employment issues and access to health and well being resources with links to free services.
  • Feeling stressed, worried or overwhelmed with everyday life issues? Beyondblue have developed  a free wellness coaching program for anyone over the age of 16. 

If you have any questions or queries, please get in touch with us at sona@architecture.com.au.

Jacques Chevrant-Breton
National President, SONA