Posted by Donald on November 14, 2003 at 15:02:18:
In Reply to: could use some advice posted by ck on November 13, 2003 at 01:43:14:
It is during your third year of college that one needs to give serious attention to the possibility of going to graduate school. You have take the step to do that and historically, the architect has completed the required formal education with a bachelors degree, but this has changed. The qualified student is encouraged to consider very seriously courses to earn a masters degree in architecture, structural engineering or urban design.
Many of the experiences as a student in an architecture curriculum will be similar to those of students in another curricula. However, there are a few unique experiences in an architectural program, that you would want to know more about, as you may have missed some of them in your liberal arts education.
For instance, the lab course is common to the architecture curricula. The architectural student's principal lab is the drafting room and the the design and art studio, for courses in composition and design, drawing and sketching, drafting and presentation, painting and sculpture...and sometimes sleeping. All these activities involve a great deal of experimentation in the materials and techniques of the visual arts and consumes great chunks of the student's time. Because of the equipment involved - drafting boards, computers, and a sizeable quantity of art materials and paper, paints, art board, and other drafting materials - almost all this lab work is done in the Design Studio at school.AT U of I it was required to work in studio. In most universities, the labs are open all night as students push to meet their deadlines (which is why I mentioned sleep).
Since most of the students work is done in the visual arts media, there is a great deal of "brainstorming", kibitzing, and criticism of each others work...all in a creative, constructive and fun atmosphere. Out of this grows a great camaraderie among you and your studio mates. Traditionally, confrontations, discussions, debates, and occasionally comic relief through a healthy amount of practical joking are hallmarks of the architectural school. You may have to take some summer design courses to get accustomed to this while in Graduate School.
Your employment both during school and after graduation means a great deal more than an opportunity to earn a living. Your first job is also your first step in fulfilling the period of internship required by your state registration board. The Student of Architecture should have no problem in finding summer employment that will offer personal career development...the person not trained or educated in architecture is going to find it more difficult to get into a firm.
It will be your undergraduate and graduate Design Studio (and working experiences) Portfolio, that you will use to secure employment with an architecture firm. If your know of someone who is willing to take you in without any education or architecture exposure, that is the other way. Its not impossible, but much harder to acheive.
There were some non architecture students in my class through the years but the ratio was not more than 1-2% out of the architecture curriculum
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