transitions -- just looking for words of advice or ideas


Hi, I am a undergraduate student at a small liberal arts school who plans to graduate this spring. My major is a joint major of Architecture and Env. Studies with a minor in Spanish. 

I am trying to think about the next step for me after I graduate and feeling rather overwhelmed. Eventually I would like to go to graduate school for M.Arch, but I would like to take a year or couple of years beforehand to do something else (or multiple things). 

Hopefully if I find the right opportunity it could help me stand out in the applicant pool when I do eventually apply to graduate programs. I am also thinking that I will have plenty of years working in firms/in the office (I have already spent 2 summers doing this) after graduate school, so it is probably in my best interest to do something different. I love architecture and design however, and do not want to stray too far from that realm. 

My preliminary ideas are perhaps some sort of design build program or project, but it would be in my best interest also to be generating income during this time. I also would love to be able to find some sort of opportunity in a Spanish speaking country so that I can continue to develop my language skills, but am pretty open to being just about anywhere. I also have been involved with construction in the past and would also be interested in opportunities that might give me more construction related knowledge, as I believe that will be essential knowledge for me to have later on.

I guess that I am just looking for any thoughts or suggestions about what kinds of opportunities I should look into or paths that I could go - thanks!

Sep 14, 19 4:41 pm

A few thoughts:

Easier/ better to travel now that it will be later.

Working doing something (even straight-up architecture) could really help direct what you want to do with a graduate degree.

Sep 15, 19 6:16 pm  · 

Great thoughts, archanonymous.

I agree that construction experience is great/essential for every architect.  Even physical construction labor for a summer would be huge.

Why not start working your personal network and ask for informational interviews with a variety of firms - design-build, architecture, contractors, real estate developers, etc?  Even if they aren't hiring, lots of people will gladly sit down for 20 minutes with an eager student.  You may get 30 "no" responses, but the 1 or 2 yeses will pay off.

And remember, assuming you are in your early 20s, you have another 60 years to figure it out.  Your career is going to change directions in ways you can't even imagine today.  Your choice won't be wrong as long as it feels right to you today.  You can change it all tomorrow.

Sep 17, 19 8:38 pm  · 

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