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Danielle Fernandes

For her thesis project, Danielle has designed an Educational Career Training Centre that aims to support and enhance the learning experiences of local people who have been affected by job and income loss, due to the pandemic. With an expressed interest in workplace and educational space planning, she was able to create a productive/inclusive environment that balances the needs of individual learners. An emphasis on wellbeing, access to resources, as well as industry collaboration has been integrated within the design of the center as a means to draw the community together.

Project Overview

It’s a known fact that the COVID-19 Pandemic has placed a strain on society which has prompted a myriad of issues related to stress and unemployment. Although Ontario offers many career services, research indicates a lack of facilities that offer appropriate workspaces and skills training for a wide variety of industries. This, in turn, can unintentionally limit job opportunities in fields that may allow for the unemployed to strive and reach their full potential. Therefore, in order to develop a successful Educational Career Training Centre, there is a need for a range of diverse spaces. This would include, motivational skills training environments, productive workspaces, proper organizational support for well-being, community and industry collaboration, as well as access to resources such as technology.

Evidence based findings include: motivating skills training environment, productive workspaces, organizational support for wellbeing, community & industry collaboration and access to resources (technology)  Click to enlarge

Evidence Based Findings.

Compress, Release, Repeat  Click to enlarge

Parti Diagrams.

Concept/Design Process

Compression & Release is a daily occurrence. Both elements are needed to reach a sense of balance as we go through challenges that force us to grow and acquire new confidence that releases us into better phases of life and career. By integrating a range of diverse spaces and technology within this concept, it creates a place of optimism and opportunity for the users of the Educational Career Training Centre.

Site Plan/Floor Plan(s)

The main floor is designed to encourage interaction between all users, whether it be within an independent or collaborative setting that can either be private or public. Here the space is divided into six areas – Student Designated Space, Co-working/Event Space, In-between Areas, Resources & Amenities, Administration as well as Building Utilities.

Colour coded floor plan  Click to enlarge

Main Floor Plan.

illustrative diagram of section 1  Click to enlarge

Building Section A.

illustrative diagram of section 2  Click to enlarge

Building Section B.


These building sections showcase the sense of compression and release through its varying ceiling heights. That way you can experience how a visitor’s perspective alternates from narrow to large open areas. The classrooms along the back of the Centre utilize an inclined ceiling design for acoustical reasons, as they have both a sound spreading and concentrating effect.

3D Views

The following perspective provide an idea of the spatial experience occupants will encounter, starting from the main entrance, through to the co-working zone, and back to the lecture style classroom. All consistent with the same materials of acoustic wood panelling, carpeting (for sound absorption) and terrazzo finish vinyl tile flooring.

3D rendering of the Main Entrance  Click to enlarge

Main Entrance.

3D rendering of the Co-working Zone  Click to enlarge

Co-working Zone.

3D rendering of the Lecture Style Classroom  Click to enlarge

Lecture Style Classroom.