My name is Sergio Puch, and I am from Lima, Peru. I took part in the ECCEDU summer school architecture program in 2018. Until now this experience has been one of the most exciting and important in my formation as an architect and a person. The fact of knowing new places, new people, new stories, along with the case that this trip was my first chance to become acquainted with Europe, made the whole program a continuous process of learning.
The opportunity to enroll in the ECCEDU came to me after winning a scholarship as the first prize of an architecture competition in Peru called Rimac River Park, organized by Lima Design Network. The competition seeks to promote new ideas for Rimac’s riverbanks, the most important river in Lima. Our proposal focused on proposing pedestrian bridges that will encourage people to connect easily on both sides of the river by using them.
The summer program started with lectures from a variety of professionals established and recognized in their field of work. These three weeks of lectures were essential to get to know the social, urban, and architectural context of the Czech Republic and the neighboring countries. On the weekends we took field trips to nearby cities. We visited on successive weekends for example Vienna, Berlin, and Brno. The first weeks were also the perfect time to get to know other participants in the program, students, and young architects from all over the world, as well as meeting the students from the Business and the Law programs. All of this was happening in Prague, a beautiful and amazing city with priceless historical value and exciting culture. Everyday walks were completely joyful and vibrant moments, enjoying the little things of the city and contrasting all with my own city. As an architect I was impressed by the medieval buildings and the transport system too, learning a lot about them.
After the 3 weeks of lectures, students started 4 weeks of internships. I joined DAM Architekti, a renowned and important studio in the city with a diverse list of projects. This experience was invaluable, the chance to know from inside how an architecture office functions. It was an opportunity to deal with new ideas and to learn new skills. Such experience also makes one rethink aspects of one’s professional goals. The DAM´s team received me in the best possible way and made me feel a part of the office since day one. I shared great moments and experiences with the team. The door has been left open for me to return. I look forward to an opportunity to return to Prague to work.
I will always be grateful to the ECCEDU for the opportunity to study in Prague, for the professional way they managed the program, and to the people in charge that I got to know and appreciate. They were there to support us at all times. The friends I made during the program are still important persons in my life, and we keep in touch and share our life and goals. This summer program will always be for me one of the most enriching and motivating experiences ever. I would encourage anyone to enroll and gain first-hand experience.