Father and son studying together

Father and son spending quality time together and learning something …

Father and son spending quality time together and learning something useful at the same time. mbl.is/Árni Sæberg

Father and son,  Sigurður Brynjar Pálsson and Sölvi Steinn Sigurðsson, are both learning to become carpenters at FB’s evening school. Studying together in school has been nice and they plan to build together a guesthouse at the family’s summerhouse next summer.

The father is the CEO of Byko

“I have always wanted to be able to do things myself when it comes to maintenance, for example, in the home or in the countryside where the family’s summer house is located. I rarely take off my “carpenter’s vest” there, because I find it soothing to take on another role than I do every day at work. I have always been interested in working with my hands, being creative and making things,” says Sigurður, who worked in his high school years for a construction contractor, but then took a different path in life and is currently the CEO of BYKO .

The son is studying Business at University

Sölvi, who is 21 years old, is also studying business at the University of Iceland. He shares his father’s interest in working with his hands. “I’ve always been interested in building and working with my hands. Still, it was never on the agenda to study to become a carpenter. When Dad was looking at the courses and asked me if I wanted to go with him, I was hesitant at first. However, I decided to go for it at the spur of the moment.  “I still saw it as a good time with my dad,” Sölvi says, adding that education is always useful.

- What is it like to study business administration and carpentry at the same time?

“It’s a very good fit, it is good to get away from the books and do something more physical. It can still be a little stressful to find the time to do both, but you just need to be organized and look at it in a positive way,” says Sölvi.

Sigurður and Sölvi like the hands on studying and are …

Sigurður and Sölvi like the hands on studying and are really enjoying it. mbl.is/Árni Sæberg

- What was it like going to school with your dad?

It’s special but we have great fun. You show your good side and I also see a different side of my father. Then it’s just quality time that we have between us, which I love,” says Sölvi and his father agrees.

“We have always been close and very good friends. It has been a pleasure to be studying together. Often it is more common that parents are giving their children advice and guidance, but in our case in school it has often been the other way round. I have often talked to my son when I want a second opinion, and we scrutinize the assignments, exchange opinions and figure out a mutual conclusion. That process has been very rewarding. We are in this together as co-students and as such on the same level and with the same end goal,” says Sigurður.

Always beneficial to learn new things

Sigurður says that the coursework has been fun but also challenging. “What has been most challenging is to get a grip on the three-dimensional thinking. The basic drawing courses have been quite challenging. This includes the requirement to be able to draw up shapes from all sides and grasp real-world dimensions. But equally, it’s very useful and it really has opened up a new way of thinking for me when it comes to buildings.”

What has been most surprising?

“How varied it is, and it’s a study that suits everyone. No strength, knowledge or experience is required. At least I came in with minimal knowledge, but I was able to build a summer house with a good team that winter,” says Sölvi.

Father and son are heading for graduation in the fall of 2023. Sigurður says that his goal is to finish his bachelor’s degree and he is possibly going to go on to the Master’s program. The education will not only result in more and better construction work but will also benefit him in his current job.

It comes in handy to be able to do all …

It comes in handy to be able to do all the maintenance themselves and the first big project will be a guesthouse at their summerhouse in the countryside. mbl.is/Árni Sæberg

“Every education, no matter what it is, is beneficial to people. I have always advocated that people should continually be learning new things and learning from others. It can only strengthen them and give them a wider perspective which is always an asset. Without a doubt, the carpentry will be of use to me in my work. BYKO customers are faced with a construction project every day, whether it be the beautification of the home, new construction, maintenance and so on. This education will further enhance my understanding of the challenges the BYKO customers deal with and need assistance with. It’s important to us that our clients are doing well with the projects they’re doing. Then in my personal life it is going to be very useful and I will be able to tackle the maintenance and projects at home. Furthermore, it has been a very enjoyable experience going back to school and getting to know fun and interesting people from all walks of life,” says Sigurður.

Sölvi, who is still a young student, is also confident that he will benefit from his carpentry studies. “This knowledge will definitely be useful in the future, whether it be at work or at the construction of my own house, sometime in the coming years. As I see it, I am not planning to work in carpentry at this point, but I don’t know what the future brings, though. “Fathers on tour” was an idea that came up when we signed up for the program, and perhaps that idea will get wings one day. Then it will come in handy to have a business degree on your resume,”  says Sölvi and smiles.

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