Moni Rahman: “Because of Stephen, I am a qualified architect”

London

22.04.2019 

Today marks the first Stephen Lawrence Day since its announcement at Stephen’s 25th anniversary memorial service last year.

I remember on that particular day feeling so proud of Doreen Lawrence and the rest of Stephen’s family, for enduring the hardships they have and for turning those hardships into such positive efforts over the last 25 years. I feel that same sense of pride today.

This announcement marked an incredible moment that will ensure Stephen’s legacy can and will live on. I am very pleased that a national day of commemoration has now formally been recognised, positively influencing the lives of young people across the UK.

And, as one of the many people whose life has been transformed by the Stephen Lawrence Trust’s work, I feel it important to share my experience.

I was very fortunate to be the first student awarded the £9000 bursary in 2003 at University of East London. With the assistance of this bursary, and with a strong sense of dedication and commitment to my work, I was driven to succeed with my studies with the aim of becoming an architect.

Obtaining my qualified architect status last year was a really proud moment and massive achievement not just for me, but for my young family who supported me throughout.

Since then, I am now more than willing to share my experiences and provide guidance and inspiration to others. I have volunteered to run workshops at my children’s school for the last two years, educating young children on topics such as architecture and getting them to engage with their built environments. I was also delighted to have made the shortlist for the Inspire Awards 2018, in the Rising Star category. 

I do believe my journey, much like the many other bursary winners, is a great example of how invaluable organisations like the Stephen Lawrence Trust are in terms of helping students from disadvantaged backgrounds establish long-lasting careers in architecture. 

It has also been great to see growing awareness of the Stephen Lawrence Trust, as well as more role models emerging from BAME groups. All in all, this helps to provide a platform that can inspire younger generations who are passionate about design and let them know that they are welcome and they too can have successful careers in architecture and the built environment.

I believe it is my responsibility to tell my story and have an active role in inspiring people from all backgrounds to achieve to their highest potential and live their best lives. I can truly say because of Stephen I am a qualified architect.

- Moni Rahman, Architect at CGL 

For full information on the Stephen Lawrence Trust and the incredible work they're doing in honour of Stephen's memory, please go to https://www.stephenlawrence.org.uk/

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