A love of nature and desire to ensure buildings are built sustainably led Jackson to the Building Science programme.
Jackson’s interest in architecture began at a young age. “I have vivid memories of spending Christmases at my grandparent’s Ian Athfield-designed house in Christchurch. This sparked my interest in the way buildings are designed and built,” he says.
After beginning his studies as a Bachelor of Architecture student, Jackson realised in his second year that his interests lay more in the building science programme, specifically Sustainable Engineering Systems. “I had always enjoyed getting out into the bush and mountains growing up, and I wanted to make sure the buildings that were being built in the future did not degrade the natural environment further.”
After completing his Bachelor of Building Science Jackson moved on to the Postgraduate Certificate in Architectural Science. “I was drawn to the programme by its focus on how buildings should be built for the comfort of occupants and the impact this has on the environment.”
Jackson’s coursework explored how to design and simulate buildings in New Zealand that offer greater levels of comfort while using less energy. “These explorations culminated in designing and simulating net-zero energy buildings in Wellington and California. Understanding the theory and physics behind the energy balances of a building, such as heat gain in vs heat loss out, was key to carrying out these projects,” explains Jackson. He was excited to see that better buildings could be built. And that energy simulation has a large role to play in doing so.
After graduating Jackson started working as a Home Energy Assessor at Sustainability Trust. “Each day I am travelling around the Wellington region assessing home-owners' properties and educating them on what they can do to ensure their home is warmer, drier, and healthier. The knowledge I gained from studying at the Wellington School of Architecture has helped me immensely. It’s given me the theoretical background of building science which I now use every day in my current role–helping people in the Wellington region improve the warmth and overall health of their homes.”