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Is Architecture Worth it?

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dedicatedbydesign

d

Sep 18, 19 7:52 pm  · 
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dedicatedbydesign

Hey Kraye, new architecture student here. I'm a sophomore in college. Planning to change major soon. Based on my experience so far, the people I interact with are all great and friendly. It's really beneficial to build connections with others when you spend hours after hours in the studio to complete projects. One thing you should figure out for sure is whether you are passionate about architecture. These people are all driven by their passion for building things, and of course, if you love something,  you would work extra hard for it. The philosophy also goes like this: if you work hard for something, you'll become better at it, and if you're good in it, you'll grow to love it.

 Architecture program's work load is quite intense, to say the least. Chances are, you'll be spending all your time to work on architecture, and that leaves no room for creative art work like you mentioned. Your drawing skills does not matter, like at all. Although (probably you've seen this already while looking into this major) it's a good skill to have. For me, I lean more towards the creative art side, so I knew I didn't fit in the architect's "technicality" mold. If you have your mind set more on that type of art, I'd suggest looking into graphics design, communication design, animation, or game design (creating environments, settings, etc.). That's only to name a few, there's plenty. 

If you really really like planning, drafting, oversee constructions, building, managing budgets, then by all means go for it. Architecture students will get to visit different sites (if you sign up for a club like the AIA, I'm sure almost any college in the U.S. have it), model and draft using Autocad, build, learn to meet deadlines and client's needs, and last but not least, learn to work in teams. 

Before choosing this major, I was somewhat interested, but not exactly. More importantly, I already had something else in mind but let others dictate what I should and shouldn't do. I see the pros and cons to it as well, just thought I should try it out and see for myself. Surely enough, it's definitely not for me. Just don't see myself taking part in construction projects and designing buildings in the long run. No point in spending time, money, and energy in something you can't give your all to. 

Sep 18, 19 9:39 pm  · 
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dedicatedbydesign

For math, highest level I've gone was Survey of Calculus. Survey of Calculus isn't required, depending upon the universities you're looking into. Apparently before, you need to have up to Calculus 1 or 2 with Analytic Geometry. I guess because of the weight of technological advancement today, there's less math involved. From how I see it, this major is not math-heavy. As long as you're able to calculate basic math problems quickly and think logically. However, you definitely need trigonometry and physics. I took a combo course of Pre-calculus and Trigonometry, then Survey, which helped me tremendously in Physics.

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Non Sequitur

"Your drawing skills does not matter, like at all"

That is grossly incorrect.  Drawing is a crucial communication skill.

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dedicatedbydesign

Yes and no. I've seen people with below average drawing skill but they do perfectly well in designing and building their structures. All depends on how they present it or what message they are trying to convey. It's something one can definitely improve so it's not an endgame. 

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Non Sequitur

So, in your vast experience as a student, you can make such claims? You're very far from the game if this is how you see things.

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dedicatedbydesign

Well, guess I should have been clearer in that portion. I've been going around firms to see what they do. If you're experienced in the field, please do debunk whatever I have to say. After all I'm just a student, so figured I could give a student's insight on things. My higher peers have told me the same tale so I guess why not?

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Non Sequitur

You need better peers... and likely, a better school.

I draw every single day at the office.  Sometimes to communicate details or changes to the junior staff, sometimes to hash out design ideas, sometimes on a whim in a client or site meeting.  

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dedicatedbydesign

hm I think so. How is it so far? If you don't mind me asking.

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Non Sequitur

how is what?

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dedicatedbydesign

When one starts out their education as an architect, they don't exactly have to excel in drawing is what I mean. It's a skill nice to have. In the long run, you'll definitely improve the more you do it.

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Non Sequitur

No, you should be very comfortable expressing construction and design ideas by sketch while in school. You'll struggle in the real world or be forced into straight production roles if you can't communicate effectively.

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dedicatedbydesign

Like I said, there's definitely time for one to improve their drawing ability while majoring in architecture. Of course you should be fluent in sketching designs when going into the practical world. Not everyone excel in drawing when they begin studying for it.

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dedicatedbydesign

Dismiss the question. I got it. I don't mean to give out false information or offend anyone. Thanks for correcting me!

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gregknow@bellsouth.net

      I have a four year Architecture Bachelors Degree from Miami's, Florida International University South Campus. There is no future here in
Architecture, and this profession should not be taut in school. There is
no job stability, and no good employers either who really care about
how you're progressing.

The professors should know that there leading kids down the wrong path
if they want a really stable and prosperous profession. I should have
gone into computer Programing or something along those lines. If all you
want to do is get a great education that's fine, but in the
professional world it is not a rewarding carrier. Most Architect's
pretend or have a "monopoly on the market" and the only well renowned
Architects get the jobs, and or pass the business on to their children.

It is either feast or famine in the architecture world where Most of
these well renowned architects use college students to do all of their
work. And besides that, most of the owners cannot operate the computers because of the new technologies. They hire and fire to keep up with the new technologies. For example autocad comes out first, and was number one for 10 years, and now revit comes along.

So most will hire new students out of school who understand (not knowing it them selves or going back to school to learn it) how revit works.  Architecture is a mess especially when the owner doesn't care for their employees and leaves it all up to a young architect to run the employees or office management who doesn't understand anything in the first place.

You maybe doing all the work as I was and then the work runs out and
you'll be laid off after a year and three months. I believe that the
owner/architects (most wouldn't on their own) should be retested after 5
years so that they don't create a bad factory environment and to learn
the new technologies so they don't become stale.

You may be lucky, and last longer but who wants to gamble with your
life. Architecture is a gamble, and in my opinion its like digging your
own grave especially when the employer is spoiled and doesn't care about anyone or anything but themselves!

I hope I can help someone and this only took me with my 10 years of architectural experience to figure this out. Another important layer of trouble or factor here in Miami Fl. is that I don't speak Spanish and I'm not Spanish.  Please don't be led down this wrong path because I wouldn't do that to you!

Dec 25, 19 1:41 pm  · 
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josephfmcmanus

Look I think it's great to be ambitious and hard working and intelligent.  It's better to be aware of how crappy people act.  And it's best to go into architecture with no debt and 10000 dollars in the bank, and look out for yourself and put on hold dreams of being great.  Frank gehry was fortunate to have money saved up...from driving a truck...and he was at the right place...Los Angeles...20 years before it was a crazy expensive place.   Fpr everyone else...it's survival.  I survived doing this...designing and doing construction documents and getting better.  Until I could not pay car insurance and was threatened with jail time by a harsh judge.  So consider if you wish to suffer a long time for the privilege or honor of being a low paid " professional" who makes 25 percent less than a registered nurse with a 4 year degree.


You may be one of the he lucky few who is a real people person.  Or you may be highly creative like me.  Creativity won't help much.  Have a nice day.




  

Jan 24, 20 9:30 pm  · 
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Non Sequitur

Nurses are more important than architects and deserve to be paid more.

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Non Sequitur

Relative to medical professionals? Yes.

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Non Sequitur

I don't. Nurses are X5 more important and useful than architects.

 · 
Non Sequitur

Ricky, never said architects are not useful. My point is that they are not as useful as nurses.

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Non Sequitur

Ricky. The hospital custodians are more important than me, an architect. Also, I don’t think you understand the work nurses do.

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josephfmcmanus

It's only worth the effort if you don't want to do anything else ever.  And you need money in the bank.  Sonce you won't be able to make o pay the he bills until you get licensed.  Which could take 5 years after your are out of college.  Think carefully.

Jan 25, 20 1:06 pm  · 
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OneLostArchitect

Getting licensed doesn’t guarantee you a higher salary

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teilak.day

The kid needs to read your post(s) and engrave it in granite. Your post is more reflective of the industry as opposed to fantasy.

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teilak.day

The answer is simple:   Today?  Absolutely NOT.

If you're looking to go into a well paying (use common sense here, if you have a professional degree and you're entire profession falls at or near the bottom of what most other professional degree holders make, then the median pay is "low").

Architecture used to pay very impressively and the field was highly regarded.  Today, teen-agers are using $3,500 architectural software packages (that tie into local building codes, structural/soil engineering specifics built-in, etc..) to effortlessly create designs that skilled architects did 30 years ago in a fraction of the time.  Technology has long outmoded the profession.  Go into engineering if you want job security.  You can learn architecture/structure design on your own time.

If you want to waste tens of thousands of dollars, by all means, major in Architecture like the many fools that do, wishing they hadn't.  At some point this kid has to use his common sense and come to the realization that it's a dead profession.  It's like majoring in home "milk delivery".  Sure, there was a time when you could support a family delivering milk.  You cannot today.

The kid has been told.  You can't make a horse drink water, even if you've led it to the stream.  Now it's up to his own common sense and whether or not he can do basic math when figuring up the median mortgage and living expenses in areas he wishes to live... and seeing whether his "passion" actually makes fiscal sense based on his standard of living.

There's a fool born every minute.



Mar 19, 20 5:06 am  · 
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tintt

Still need a license to draw the plans. Those kids can't sell their effortless "plans". That's how a lot of us get work, some poor client bought plans from a chump that wasn't qualified to prepare them. Makes things really expensive for the clients to have to do things twice.

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White_Snowman

Man people on here really hate architecture huh?

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tintt

this post makes a good point about why we are licensed. because lots of people will sell you something that looks like it can work but doesn't. Consumers need better protections from such fraud.

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White_Snowman

I feel you on that. I’m just getting started in all of this but it seems like a lot of people on here just straight up don’t like architecture.

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tintt

everybody loves architecture

 · 
Volunteer

Architects only love the flavor of the day. When the educated public loathes brutalism, post-modernism, deconstructivism, and parametricism there is an ever-so-slight problem.

 · 
Non Sequitur

“ There's a fool born every minute” correct. This one post pony rant is just one example of this.

 · 
midlander

the only thing architects like more than architecture is self-pity!

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Non Sequitur

^ I like beer more than architecture

 · 
Chad Miller

I don't know teilak.day, just because you make shit money and have no skills doesn't mean that everyone else is in the same position.

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midlander

I like beer with my architecture. Also coffee, depending on time of day and mood. Winning combination.

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atelier nobody

Sigh...I had to give up beer - architecture is all I have left.

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teilak.day

It’s unfortunate that many of you are very ignorant about the realities surrounding this profession when it comes to people and businesses who used to actually use architects and why many no longer do so for much of their work which, for many firms is the type of work that once made up a considerable percentage of many firms' income; I’m being conservative. You know that. I know that. TINTT: "Still need a license to draw the plans. Those kids can't sell their effortless "plans". That's fantasy, it's like telling people and businesses that they’re supposed to pay tax on online and bartering transactions. It’s also an assumption that they're going to get decent plans/design from an architectural firm which commonly isn’t the case. I think we all know that too. It's about whether or not your plans are actionable, safe and legal. The truth is that people young and old sell their plans, a decades-old practice that's becoming more common with tech and the internet. (care to dispute that fact?). Businesses and individuals also routinely purchase designs/plans from abroad (want to dispute that fact too?). Designs/plans are routinely vetted by engineers and the city. Once people/businesses had to pay handsomely for a firm to even convert a design to plans, but today is easily done in-house and up-to-spect (structural engineer + city specs) alterations are just as easily without paying $500 here, $3000 there for changes... The fact is that I don't have to pay those costs anywhere *nearly* as much as I once did, due to technology. I remember what I had to pay in the mid-70's compared to today. Let's not get ridiculous about this dying overly saturated field that once was a serious money maker and jobs were plentiful. Where it was once common to consult with an architect before having a 2 story, $1.2m outbuilding built on the back acreage, it's now common to bang out the design in-house, have the engineer come out for a chat & coffee, then over to city planning to get down to business and hammer out details (a bit more detailed, but you get the gist). Today I can make changes at my home to plans at 4am, and sit in the city permit/plans office at 8am with printed plans in hand. Designs/plans are purchased and executed with the municipality's blessing on a daily basis. Wake up. Many of you are still doing business as if it's 1970. Today the architect is often cost optional and easily removed from the cost equation for many routine design/plan/building requirements.

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tintt

TINTT is short for there is no there which roughly translates to I'm not sure if this profession that I've devoted so much to actually exists. Hope things start looking up for you soon, teilak.

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tintt

oh, and I'm working on drawing an existing building from 1970 right now and I can guarantee I'm no where near stuck in the 70's.

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teilak.day

Things never looked down for me.  I never majored in architecture. Never considered it.  I hired them.  If you're raking in the money doing what you love then more power to you.  Most (not all) architects that I speak to across the U.S. Florida, Virginia, Indiana, Kansas, Colorado, California... and those close to our family,  are not impressed with their job or pay and the profession has proved rather volatile when it comes to job security.


Mar 20, 20 5:34 pm  · 
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Non Sequitur

Settle down child, you’re not as special as you believe yourself to be.

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teilak.day

I don't present myself as special, just accurate. Again, dispute my accurate facts. You might be an exception, but I'm talking about the rule when it comest to the financial outlook of the profession. Dismal considering the requisites (poor pay-to-work ratio). I mean whether or not this is a major of study that pays off financially is just business 101 kind stuff. Either it does or doesn't. Architecture by and large doesn't make fiscal sense and you'd be hard pressed to find a finance professional that would say otherwise.

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Non Sequitur

My finance professionals say otherwise.

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tintt

You are probably making bank hiring 16 year olds to be your architects, I wouldn't complain.

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tintt

can these 16 year old kids help solve the pandemic crisis? model some hokeysticks please.

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teilak.day

Again, I laid some irrefutable facts down at your feet.  You may not appreciate or like hearing those facts, but they're facts all the same.  I would absolutely not encourage or pay for any of my grandkids to major in architecture today as it no longer makes fiscal sense in my opinion.  Everyone has their own financial standard.  Architecture neither meets the financial standards, nor job security/growth that I'd want for my grands.  Your opinion may vary and that's what's great about discussions- we can appreciate the opinions of others.

Mar 20, 20 5:34 pm  · 
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teilak.day

I am utterly amazed at how far architectural software has come!  Some of the features are very useful.  I can take a design from almost anywhere, torn from a brochure or book, scan it, scale it, and have it at my fingertips to alter with the software doing all the physics for soil, structural specifics/loads, local codes, etc.. I used to use comparatively primitive software to better get my ideas across to the architects, but today, I can instead basically have a complete detailed plan on the plotter in 8-12 hours from scratch.  Quicker if I were younger.  3D print? Model created?  It's just far easier today due to tech which has effectively eroded (in-part) the pay of architects, and due to the number of architects churned out of schools, it's easier to pay low and for firms to abuse them.  Those are some obvious real-world facts.  I don't have a dog in the fight.  Whether architects get paid a median $48k per annum or $150k it doesn't affect me in the least, especially today.

Mar 20, 20 5:34 pm  · 
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Non Sequitur

Cool story. Your “facts” don’t really apply to me or my location, so they are not as universal (or intelligent) as you believe them to be.

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teilak.day

Then don't wear the shoe if it doesn't fit. However the facts that I presented as they pertain financially, fit more architects than they do not. The fact of the matter is that architecture by and large is a fiscally stunted occupation compared to what it once was with not only notably diminished earring power as an occupation, but one that is further diminished and increasingly prone to down-sizing and lay offs... "universally" across the U.S.  Want to dispute that fact?

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Non Sequitur

Yeah, it’s not that bleak but you’re free to believe in whatever you want. Some choose Jesus, some choose misinformed generalizations, some choose both. Neither are real but I’m happy it makes you happy to hold tight to your security blanket.

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teilak.day

I thought not. Good day.

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White_Snowman

When it comes down to it every profession is affected by technology and they get easier over time. Every profession has a degree of uncertainty. Architecture certainly have more than others, but no one can be 100% sure they will have a job tomorrow. Every profession has a bunch of old people complaining that it was 100x harder when they were coming up and that “it’s not what it used to be.” It isn’t what it used to be and to be good at anything you have to be flexible to a changing environment.

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Non Sequitur

I win.

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Volunteer

Architecture, as practiced today, is essentially a midaeval guild, and like those ancient guilds it is rapidly vanishing due to changes in technology and lifestyles.

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Non Sequitur

^it is not. Exaggerated student expectations and unrealistic education costs make it appears that way.

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Volunteer

The long education coupled with the extremely long apprenticeships with low wages and senseless geographical limitations on areas of practice are straight out of the guild playbook.

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atelier nobody

@White_Snowman - "every profession is affected by technology"

True

"and they get easier over time"

Not true; some aspects of architectural practice have gotten easier, but working out how a building goes together is exactly as hard as it has ever been.

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