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Talks and lectures

RIBA Gulf Chapter CV and portfolio review: Getting noticed

Industry leading professionals Stephen Drew and Andy Shaw advise on the best strategies to “stand out" and land a job. This session will include a live review of your CV and portfolio, a discussion on how to approach companies, and how to write a cover letter.

The COVID-19 pandemic has presented several new challenges for the modern day designer, one of which being how to stand out in an ever crowded market. A simple tweak to your CV and portfolio could make the difference in landing your dream job or progressing your career in the right direction.

The RIBA Gulf Chapter has arranged industry leading professionals to share their experience and knowledge to help you take the next steps in delivering outstanding pieces that can help give you the edge over the competition. The speakers will review works from selected panellists and give advice over where they feel the panellist can improve and what it is they look for in prospective new candidates. Live questions from the audience will also be taken at the end of the talk.

Jennie Binchy, a founder of Binchy and Binchy Architecture, who reviews hires for her company, will also join to give her feedback. Binchy and Binchy is an award winning and industry leading practice in the region.

If you would like your CV and portfolio to be reviewed by the panel please register for details.

This free event is arranged and hosted by the RIBA Gulf Chapter and is open to all globally; students or seasoned professionals.


Stephen Drew FRSA

Stephen is the founder of Architecture Social, which has grown from humble beginnings to become one of the most popular online communities for architects, students, and industry professionals alike. Since 2014, Stephen has led recruitment teams working with industry leading architecture practices such as Heatherwick Studios, Benoy, Allies and Morrison, AHMM, and Skidmore Owings and Merrill. Before recruitment, he notably worked in the architecture industry at EPR Architects for three years after completing a degree and diploma in architecture at the University of Westminster and Manchester School of Architecture.

The combination of working directly in the architecture industry, as well as the recruitment industry, means that Architecture Social has a fresh spin on an old formula by breaking down barriers and providing a supportive environment with like minded individuals to learn, grow and socialise. Stephen is an Associate of the Royal Institute of Architects and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. Previously a Visiting Critic and Teaching Assistant of Manchester School of Architecture, professional mentor for postgraduate students of Architecture at the University of Westminster as well as a guest lecturer for students of LMJU.

Stephen is a Council Member of the RIBA.

Andy Shaw RIBA

Andy Shaw RIBA is an architect and educator based in Dubai. He is the Managing Partner at AMA. AMA is a boutique design studio with projects on site in Dubai Marina Harbour, Palm Jumeirah, and three residential towers for Emaar.

Since January 2020, Andy has been the Chair of the RIBA Gulf Chapter, helping create multiple online events, the first Dubai Architecture Festival, and a regionally focussed sustainability series.

He is also a Visiting Professor of Architecture at Heriot-Watt University, Dubai teaching Professional Practice and Sustainable Design. He is a RIBA Part 3 Examiner for Westminster University and is also a contributor for the Dubai Future Foundation’s monthly progress group advising the government on future plans. Andy has worked in the Gulf for over 12 years, on projects such as DIFC Park Towers, Innovation Hub in Internet City and the new Harbour Master’s Building in Dubai Harbour. He has reviewed hundreds of candidates and CVs working for large companies and for AMA.

Andy is passionate about how innovative technology and sustainable design can combine to improve the built environment for all citizens.

Host: Ryan Sailsman - RIBA Gulf Chapter Representative, Marketing