Last week, WHSAD SYEP students visited the offices of Sciame Construction LLC, a construction company that was established almost 50 years ago.
After our usual commute to any trip, we headed into the building located on 14 Wall St. After heading up to the 2nd floor, we had breakfast provided by Sciame. While settling in, an employee by the name Martin Dellato handed everyone folders. The folders had an agenda of what presentations we would be hearing, a diagram that denotes the positions of people in the company, and many pictures and descriptions of projects the company has done.
During the presentations, the workers showed us various projects that they have completed or will complete in the near future. But one project that stood out was the “Ronald O. Perelman Performing Arts Center at the World Trade Center“, which is set to open in 2023. The standout feature of this project is the absence of windows in order to make the building more sleek and modern. But then, how would you account for the lack sunlight? An information sheet provided by Sciame states “The translucent façade includes thin, book-matched marble stone laminated within insulated glass allowing natural and interior lighting to filter through its surface.” Book matched marble stone was implemented into the structure so it would allow natural sunlight and other types of lighting, without the need for actual glass windows.
Another important part of construction is safety, we had a safety presentation led by Dan Orlowski, Sciame’s Corporate Safety Director. He showed us accident statistics, ranging from minor to fatal accidents. Towards the end of the presentation, a couple of students volunteered to wear a safety harness used by construction workers.
Below are the employees names and what they presented:
- Meet & Greet – Sciame Team Members
- Introductions/Management Overview – Martin Dellatto
- Presentation On Sciame and Projects – Joe Mizzi
- Career Testimonial & Current Projects – Jay Gorman
- Procore & Current Projects – Lily Sackman
- Bim-3D Modeling (Gaby Khoury/Nick Reilly)
- Safety Presentation – Dan Orlowski
Many presentations were given and in the next section, WHSAD students will explain what their experience was like at SCIAME Construction LLC.
WHSAD SYEP Students thoughts on Sciame Trip
On Thursday we went to the Sciame Architecture Firm On Wall St.
We were greeted by Martin who showed us to our seats. We were given a brief presentation of the company and its work. There was also a folder with information about the buildings and who worked there.
We were then given an introduction by Joseph Mizzi, President of Sciame and who is on the Salvadoir Center board of trustees; therefore, Joseph is our teacher Andrew’s boss. He is also the COO of the firm.
While there were many great presentations, the most interesting one in my opinion was the safety presentation given at the end.
The presenter talked about how new the idea of safety on site was to construction and how many unsafe practices were done. He explained that the fatality rates for larger projects such as the Brooklyn Bridge were so high because there were no rules to implement a safe work environment. OSHA was a program that brought in these rules to regulate the accidents and fatalities on construction sites.
Some of those rules consisted of workers wearing proper gear for the job, no smoking after a large fire brought down a site, to make sure that the site has access to water (another result of fires on site), having the correct people on site depending on the building, etc. He explained that if the site doesn’t follow these rules then they will get an order to stop construction.
Today I had the opportunity to go to Sciame Construction. This was an incredible experience as the atmosphere was welcoming and intriguing. I’ve never been in such a building that made me want to know more about its history. After taking our seats we were greeted with introductions and management overview from Martin Dellatto. Then a presentation on Sciame and different projects from Joe Mizzi, followed by a Career Testimonial and current projects from Jay Gorman. Lily Sackmans “ Virtually paperless” was interesting and caught my eye because she even went on to state different software that this company had to adopt because of COVID’s brutal attack. Lily Sackman introduced “Autodesk Revit”, “OneDrive”, “Newforma”, “Bluebeam” and many more. I was so interested in the fact that they also used software like AutoCAD and many others which we currently use in WHSAD. We were also introduced to “BIM” which stands for “ Building Information Modeling.” BIM is used for creating and managing data during the design, construction, and operations process. This system allows one to seek out a problem before they start constructing which saves both time and money. We then moved onto safety which is hosted by Dan Orlowski. He talked about the importance of safety in construction sites and refers back to the 1900’s when construction workers were heavily undermined and got hurt more frequently than today. These workers didn’t even have supports in case they fell while building something like the skyscrapers. Overall this was an amazing trip. I could recall feeling like this was my first time visiting a firm all over again.
The moment we sat down and enjoyed breakfast, they were very energetic and also organized. The presentation started off with John, and he basically explained the idea of what the Perelman Center looks like. The façade the Perelman Center is stone and glass. Inside the building you have the light inside of an orange color because the sun is reflected to the building. Also since it is shaped like a box in the night it looks like a chandelier because of the glow.
Next up was Lily who focused more on the software they use (apps). One of her favorites was Matter-port which works best for the client because they get to see all the rooms without being in person like Google maps but you can see the inside of buildings. Next up was Jay who had many jobs like crafting jewelry, tending bar, etc. before becoming an assistant principle in the architecture industry. One student asked a what did it take to go from an intern to an assistant principle? His reply was 16 years ago he worked for a lot of hours, started to work on the weekends and made sure his dedication was noticeable. Lastly was Dan who made a very clear presentation of the safety while creating buildings like so. “In real construction sites when real accidents do occur it’s not a joke, it really is a serious thing and nobody wants to see anyone get hurt.” During construction you’re dealing with heavy equipment and materials and year after year injuries happen, and sometimes those injuries can be quite serious. Dan brought equipment where some were able to try them on. Overall I learned a lot.
Last week, on Thursday, July 28th, we visited a general contractor organization called SCIAME Construction. It was a very educational experience, and I would definitely consider pursuing a career in their company. Basically, how they explained it is that they take completed designs from architects and they’re the ones who create the building. It was very different from what I initially thought the company did, which was everything from the initial design to the finished building. Another thing that we learned about was the safety rules that everyone must abide by to make the workplace safer for everyone present. The head of safety, Dan Orlowski, gave us a quick presentation on what rules you must follow when in the workplace such as wearing all of your equipment and always being mindful of your surroundings. At the end of the presentation he even let us try on some equipment like the safety harness and pulley which felt super secure when I put it on. It was a cool spin on what we usually look at when we go to different architecture companies weekly, and I’m all for it.
Last Thursday our group went to the construction firm, Sciame. As we were walking towards the meeting room where we would be staying and listening to presentations, I was admiring the workspace around us. The main things I noticed were the open feel it gave me, of course the amazing architecture and some models the company has made/worked on. The presentations mainly focused on showing us programs and how the company works. But the main presentation I had the most interest in was the safety aspect of construction. In my opinion, this is the most important part of construction due to the fact of all the deaths that happen on the job. He showed us data and how much safety has changed in NYC construction for the better. The expert also brought us some equipment they use on a daily basis for people working on tall buildings. This made me open my eyes and showed me something I am interested in, and maybe could be my future career.
This trip was by far the most amazing and educational trip I have ever had in the program of Career Clue. First point is the way the company’s interior looks very professional and gives a way of saying that this is a great company. Second point is the company’s workers are fabulous at explaining their jobs and what they need to put in a project to make it successful. Also, they explained the safety hazards and safety equipment for the construction workers to wear and how to wear it. The last point that I wanted to mention is the food that they gave us. It was very very nice eating it with a can of soda, and also I wanted to thank the program and the workers of Career Clue for making these trips and these projects for us to work on and understand architecture better. Thank you Mr. K and Mr. A
Edwin Villanueva Martinez
Last week we took a trip to visit the Sciame firm on Wall Street. We were greeted by several associates who offered us food. After settling down and getting into the presentations, we uncovered a lot of what is considered when designing any building: safety. We were given a demonstration of the gear that is used when building a structure, which included some hard hats, bright colored safety vests which were attached to several wires, and other various safety measures. We also learned that a single drawing may be drawn by many members at the same time, and might use different software for different purposes when creating the design. Overall it was a very informative experience and I wish to return to learn more.
Special Thanks to Sciame Construction LLC.
This section is a thank you note dedicated to Sciame for the insights of the different projects they’ve been working on, the presentations and the breakfast!