Architectural Ellipsis

... Intern Architect ...

  • Your Job Posting is Confusing

    Occasionally I peruse the recent job postings here on Archinect just to get an idea of the types jobs out there and what they are looking for. Many times I find these postings confusing and/or contradictory. Now I've posted about some of these job postings before in the forums (you can sift through my post history if you're really interested in finding them), but I thought I'd post a little more in the good ol' blog here rather than having it get lost in Thread Central. 

    I noticed this posting for a job at John Toates Architecture & Design for an Intern Architect (copied below because the link above will eventually be broken when the posting expires or is taken down):

    John Toates Architecture & Design is looking for talented and motivated Intern Architect(s) to join a small but growing traditionally inspired residential architectural design firm based in the Philadelphia area.  A minimum of 2 years of post-graduate relevant experience in custom residential design and construction documents is preferred.  A completed degree in Architecture is required and licensure is preferred.  Hand drawing/sketching, AutoCAD, Sketchup, Photoshop, and related computer program skills are required.  Candidates shall be a self-starting problem solver, with a passion for the holistic approach to architecture and be willing to operate as a project team member.  Responsibilities will increase with experience, exhibition of actual skills set, and personality traits.  Candidate will be working on all aspects of multiple projects under the supervision of senior staff members through schematic design into construction documents.  The firm is located in the Devon area close to 202 and 76.  The firm's projects are located in Center City Philadelphia, the Philadelphia suburbs, and spread out across the east coast representing a broad variety of design opportunities beyond the typical architectural firm's portfolio.  A relaxed but passionate work environment and competitive benefit packages are offered for this full time position.  Please send a letter of interest including why you should be considered for this position along with a current CV and work examples for consideration.  Visit us at Phone inquires will not be accepted.

    Now I could go through and meticulously address the grammar and punctuation of the posting and critique the overall effectiveness of the medium, but I won't. Instead I'll just advise you that if you apply to this posting, make sure to write your cover letter in one big block of text. Then, let us know in the comments if you get an interview. 

    Putting that aside, what I really want to draw attention to are the requirements and preferences for the candidate for this position; keep in mind this posting is for an intern architect. Requirements are as follows:

    • Completed degree in Architecture
    • Hand drawing/sketching, AutoCAD, Sketchup, Photoshop, and related computer program skills

    Preferences are as follows:

    • A minimum of 2 years of post-graduate relevant experience in custom residential design and construction documents
    • Licensure

    Looking at just the requirements, a great number of qualified intern architect candidates could potentially apply to this position. So taken all those that apply, it is generally understood that hiring practice would use the preferred qualities to limit the pool of potential candidates further. So a typical intern architect (aka, someone who does not yet have a license to practice) is going to see this posting and see that licensure is preferred, and they might assume it is not worth their time to respond to the post because they won't be able to compete with applicants who have their license.

    Conversely, a lot of licensed architects that would be well qualified for this position might not even look at the posting because it is for an Intern Architect ... a title they've worked hard to get past by earning their license. They would be looking at postings for junior archtiects, or something like that. Not only that, but any who would open and read this posting, might not want to apply because they want to be paid an appropriate salary commensurate with their title as an architect, and this type of posting suggests that the firm is only willing to put forth enough salary for an intern.

    If the employer really wants an intern architect, why list the preference for a licensed architect? And if the employer really prefers a licensed architect, why advertise for an intern architect?

    In the end, someone will apply and they will get the job. But for everyone else who applied and didn't get the job it is nice to know why you didn't get it so you can improve your chances on the next one. But with the confusion as to whether this employer really wants an intern or an architect you might be left wondering if it was because you did, or did not have a license ... among many other things.

  • "Intern" replacement coming from NCARB?

    NCARB recently published the 2015 NCARB by the Numbers report. This is the first since announcing the sunsetting of the term intern, and it looks like NCARB is keeping it's promise to not use it. Remarkably, the only occurences of the word "intern" are when it is used in the name of the...

  • NCARB Punted the Intern Title Debate

    Preface: The news is out and already old. This post has gone through plenty of iterations. I've tried writing a response to the news that NCARB is sunsetting the term intern various ways and none of them seem to really sit well with me. I've tried to discount their stance. I've tried getting angry...

  • Ceci n'est pas une pipe

    I hope this wallpaper doesn't catch on. I'm all in favor of the artwork, but just don't bring it into a building as wallpaper. Leave it as part of the museum's collection.SourceI would much rather see this instead. But I also don't hope this catches on as well.Source

  • Entry Level ... with Experience

    I've been looking at job opportunities lately. I don't know if anything will come of it, but either way, I've been looking around. I seem to be noticing more and more postings that are advertising for "entry-level" positions, but have a list of requirements that makes me wonder if employers and...

    You keep using that word ...

    Jefe, what is a plethora?

  • Keep Calm and ...

    For the last few weeks I've had my head buried in work. While it seemed to continue to pile up, I finally created a little room to breathe the last couple of days. I've been able to get a bit ahead, finish up some tasks and I have to say, it feels quite good. It has also allowed me a bit of time...

  • Well Hello Graduate! Welcome to the Rest of Your Life

    It's that time of year when a new crop of recent graduates is out looking for work, realizing that this summer marks the beginning of their new lives. Landing that first job can feel great, but getting there is only part of the story. My post today, in addition to the warm welcome, is an attempt...

  • Architecture ... In Your Ears

    As an intern I tend to spend quite a bit of time in my cubicle plugging away in CAD. In school, I listened to music to help pass the time and monotony of working on a project, but in the office I find my pandora station either starts to repeat the same stuff constantly, or I spend too much time...

  • On Internships and Mowing the Lawn

    Spring is finally here in the US and that means that students everywhere are working on their portfolios and getting ready to apply for summer internships. Even everyone's favorite blogger-tect and twitter-tect is sensing the longer days of sunshine and dusting off old posts to help the potential...

  • Want to be an Architect?; Don't Learn Revit

    Before you skip the rest of my post and start flinging words around in the comments, hear me out. I think Revit is a valuable tool and that soon (if not already) it and other BIM programs will become just part of the game and you'll have to learn it. It's either that or you can become an...

  • A.R.E. Strategies

    You'll never hear me claim I know everything. A lot of my intentions for starting this blog include getting the advice and opinions of others out there (see the last paragraph here).  With that in mind I wanted to reach out to the archinect community for some wisdom.  I'm looking at...

  • Parasitic Interns

    I came across this over on Houzz (hatezz that name by the way). While I hope the series is tongue in cheek, the distribution of the intern struck me as odd: "The Intern is a parasitic species, typically found clustered around Architects or Interior Designers, dutifully cleaning up the designs."...

  • Let's talk about ...

    As you might have gathered from the description in the sidebar, this blog is about the parts of the profession that we tend to gloss over, omit, or just don’t talk about; what I call an architectural ellipsis. Perhaps a few quick examples may be helpful in understanding what I mean. An...

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About this Blog

An ellipsis [...] is used to signal an omission, an unfinished thought, aposiopesis, or brief awkward silence. Architectural ellipses are those aspects of the profession we (perhaps intentionally) omit, gloss over, or let dwindle in silence. Generally applied this blog should encompass many aspects of the profession. Yet, as an intern architect I'll focus primarily on the architectural ellipses that occur in the internship process.

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