Posted by JF on April 22, 2003 at 11:15:31:
In Reply to: Making a Career Change posted by D on April 22, 2003 at 06:40:39:
If you haven't done much drawing previously, get yourself a sketch pad, some plain ole pencils and limber up your writing hand. Take visual notes of things you see around you and play with making diagrams to represent events, thoughts and perceptions of the world around you. In the end, this will serve you better than training in all the wizbang powers of CAD. You'll almost never have CAD on hand when you need to put first thoughts into image.
There's thousands of books to read, and you'll soon be overwhelmed. Pattern Language by Christopher Alexander will be worth your time, even though you won't be allowed to design that way in the real world.
Consider this: "Architects, like dogs, are only as good as their masters." Out here in the cold, architects wag tail for developers and government contracts.
Capitalize on your business education - read up on legal and financial aspects of design, construction, capital improvement and facility management. This mostly gets lip service in architecture schools. You'll have a lot more leverage as a director of capital planning than as the supplicant architect responding to requests for proposals.
You'll make more difference in the lives of the people as the director of a community development corporation rather than as the architect designing the housing. You'll be the one guiding and approving the designs - knowledgeable in architecture because you read architecture and urban planning out of personal interest, but professionally empowered to make change happen in the real world of property, finance and networking.
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