Alum Paul Thorbourne is the architect for the Wolmer's Auditorium. He attended Wolmer's Boys' from 1961 to, 1968 and was a member of both the track team and combined choir. Paul knew he wanted to become an architect from an early age and therefore decided to leave Wolmer's at the end of Lower Sixth to study for external exams in more relevant subjects. He spent the next half year working as a sales clerk for office equipment and supplies at Bryden & Evelyn and attended classes after work. He also played keyboards in a Band which eventually morphed into the "Inner Circle." With the help of his parents and a relative, he got the opportunity to leave for New York in 1969 to continue working while enrolling for part time studies at the City University of New York.
After two years he was accepted in the School of Architecture when he applied for and was awarded a Jamaican Government Scholarship to complete his Bachelor of Architecture Degree. He returned to Jamaica in 1975 and worked at the Ministry of Works for the next eight years which culminated in him being appointed Chief Architect.
Although he enjoyed his tenure at the Ministry, Paul wanted to be more involved in building design and took the bold step in 1983 to go out on his own and has since operated his own firm, except for a brief three year stint when he worked in a friend's office in Washington D.C. from 2000 to 2003. His designs include buildings for the Churches Cooperative Credit Union head office (Now First Heritage), New Ministry of Finance Office(National Heroes Circle), Jamaica National Building Society office in Half Way Tree, Campion College Auditorium and the monument for the late Prime Minister Hugh Lawson Shearer, which now stands at the National Heroes Park.
Paul was contacted by alum Tommy Lyew, who referred him to Douglas Orane who had decided to put together a team of old boys to undertake the project to design and build the new Wolmer's Auditorium. Paul immediately accepted the offer to be the architect. . He produced a design based on the needs of the various stakeholders, the land space available, and a market survey done to determine the desires of those who may want to rent the auditorium for functions." I have great memories of Wolmer's and it was the least I could do as my contribution to the school that helped make me what I am today."
His wish is that more students would pursue their passion based on their talents when choosing a career path. “Once you are doing something you love, it will lead to a more satisfying life. I know it worked for me and hope more Wolmerians will evaluate their natural talents to see how best they can assist in nation building."