PLACED Academy

At PLACED, we believe creative learning is an invaluable tool in developing young people’s confidence, self-belief and skills. Placing the built environment at the heart of this creativity means we can create empowered young citizens who know their view matters – and that they have the potential to shape the places in which they live.

We believe it is a priority to support young people under-represented in the built environment to access the sector, whether young women, those from black and ethnic minority communities and those from less privileged areas. Only by supporting greater diversity through education can we create better, stronger and more understanding communities who can make a difference.

That is why we established the PLACED Academy, a free-to-access, creative programme about the built environment for 14-18 year olds. Since 2019, we have run six programmes, with our latest commencing in July 2022.

The Academy is designed to tackle the barriers that young people face in accessing professional careers in the built environment. It seeks to support greater diversity in the sector, enable participants to develop their skills and confidence and empower them as active members of society.

Whether in-person or online in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, PLACED continues to be inspired by the ideas and ambitions of young people. We’re proud to continue to deliver educational programmes with real impact.

The Academy wouldn’t be possible without the support and generosity of our partners and sponsors. All details can be found on the PLACED Academy website.

“The PLACED Academy is an incredible opportunity that you shouldn’t pass up. The skills, knowledge, connections and most importantly fun that these events will present you with is not something to be ignored! It’s truly a once in a lifetime opportunity.”

– Lori, 2019-20 Academy Participant


To date, outcomes from the PLACED Academy include:

  • 126 graduates, with 1,055 cumulative days of participation
  • 59% of graduates are female and 33% are from ethnic minority groups
  • 96% of participants told us that they have developed skills that will help them in school, college or university, and 91% developed skills specific to the built environment
  • 94% know how places are designed and who is involved
  • 92% say they know how the design of towns and cities can impact people
  • 91% feel they have enhanced their application to university or further education
  • 85% of participants said they have a better knowledge of career and education routes
  • 81% of our of participants are more comfortable working with people they do not know, and 76% have increased in confidence
  • 80% are more confident that they could work the sector
  • 73% now feel they could help to shape decisions about where they live
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