Archinect
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Is it worth it?

Realneat2006

I AM AN 18 YEAR OLD AND IM PRETTY ANGRY RIGHT NOW. 

I WANTED TO PURSUE ARCHITECTURE  BUT EVETYWHERE I LOOK I SEE "10 REASONS NOT TO BECOME AN ARCHITECT" OR SOMETHING MORE DEPRESSING LIE I WOULDN'T HAVE ANY LIFE LATER ON. DO YOU KNOW HOW DISCOURAGING THAT IS TO HEAR? 

THIS FORUM DOES EVERYTHING IN ITS POWER TO DISCOURAGE ALL THOSE KIDS WHO WANT TO GIVE A GO AT IT. 

RATHER THAN TELLING US NOT TO PURSUE IT, TELL US WHAT TO DO IN ORDER TO GAIN AN EDGE, IN ORDER TO BE BETTER OFF?

WHERE ARE ALL THE OPTIMISTIC ARCHITECTS?  OR ANYBODY WHO DOESN'T HAVE SUCH A BLEAK LOOK INTO THE PROFESSION. 

Is it really not worth it? 


 
Oct 23, 20 4:23 pm
code

to get and "edge", you must be 100% totally committed, like a SEAL in Bud/udt - if you think you pack the right gear, then go for it, 100%, anything less, will doom you to failure

Oct 23, 20 4:26 pm  · 
1  · 
Non Sequitur

It's fine if you have reasonable expectations. Take a few minutes and try to learn what an average architect's day is and compare it to the length of education required and see if you still want to join.  It also helps if you actually like to design buildings beyond just big idea swoops.  

Oct 23, 20 4:39 pm  · 
5  · 

Also helpful if you just acknowledge that you don't need to be the designer of the big idea swoops, but actually enjoy aspects of the 95% of architecture that is everything else. I quickly realized that I'd never be that type of big swoop architect, and I've been pretty happy so far. Some people can never get past it and feel like that 5% is what "Architecture" is and end up displeased when they can't do it 100% of the time.

5  · 
Non Sequitur

Agree. I can big swoop design just as well as the next wanker dreamer but that's a very small part of what we're paid do to. The challenging (and rewarding part) is getting that swoop built.

 · 
archanonymous

If you want to design swoops, specialize in skateparks.

3  · 

long story, but I actually have some experience in big swoop skatepark design.

1  · 
Almosthip

is Nike hiring?

 · 

I know a chemist that went to work for Nike right out of school. He has some pretty cool stories about running into people like MJ and TW on the campus in Beaverton.

 · 
Jay1122

It is not that bad as long as you are not dreaming to be the big shot. It is just really COMPETITIVE. Firms compete for the rich client with big projects. Employees compete for high design firm positions. There is roughly 50% won't even get in the traditional field of architecture. And 80%-90% does boring projects.

Some real questions to ask your self:

Are you top 50% of national students? 25%?

Are you able to do Master after undergrad? I feel double arch degree is necessary to cut some edge(Opinion)

Are you going to take out mad loans for school?

How much do you care about salary and work past 40 Hrs?

Oct 23, 20 5:33 pm  · 
1  · 
ARCHCareersGuide.com

It is absolutely worth it.  In a study of architects, over 90% would do it again -- the highest percentage of any profession.  Higher than doctors and engineers.

Learn the process of becoming an architect - education, experience, and exam and just do it.

Oct 23, 20 5:59 pm  · 
 · 
geezertect

what study are you referring to?

1  · 
flatroof

The one that came from the Backside Institute.

3  · 
archi_dude

The reason you see that is because people are trying to let the new generation know the realities before they spend their young years pursuing something that is actually not what they hoped. If you really really find it interesting and captivating go for it, obviously the obstacles wont mean much to you because it's such a passion. The issue this creates though, is that since it's such a passion many people are willing to put up with lower pay, long hours and bad working environments because it's their passion. A good example is many firms and especially studio professors in college would look down on hobbies and extra curriculars stating that architecture should be your main passion. As I've switched to CM, its expected that you enjoy what you do but everyone knows everybody would rather be fishing so to say and pay and working environments are geared to try and make up for that.

Oct 25, 20 1:04 pm  · 
2  · 
The_Crow

I work for a "starchitect" and just clocked 85 hours this week. Not sure its worth it...

Oct 25, 20 1:29 pm  · 
1  ·  1

...to work for a "starchitect" 

There, I finished that for you

3  · 
Jay1122

OMG 85 Hrs. That is 12.14 Hr per day (so 9AM-9PM not including lunch and commute) 7 Days straight. Straight BS slavery LMAO. How often is that 85 Hrs? And no overtime pay I assume?

1  · 
apscoradiales

"Damn lucky to have a job, so get on with it. If you don't like it; there are always other guys who would kill for your job."

1  · 
square.

^i hope this is sarcasm via the quotes

1  · 
thisisnotmyname

@The Crow: what tasks were you doing and what happened that made them have to be done in an 85 hour week? Why did nobody in your firm ask the client to give you an extra week to do the 85 hours at a more reasonable pace?

1  · 
The_Crow

Hi everyone, it's an invited competition for a high-profile cultural project that is driving up the hours. To be honest the client is at much at fault as the founders of the firm.

 · 
Jay1122

Ah, invited competition. While there are some compensation, it is usually absolute bare minimum. The deadline is usually tight, and the firm does not want to cover the overhead cost by putting extra resources onto it because it is not billable.

I personally would not want to work for firms doing "designer" or competition stuff only no matter how big that "star" is. You could spend months to years doing physical models, diagrams, different iterations of digital models, renderings. While there are some merit in it self, once you get out of that tiny bubble and join other firms or open your own firm. You will realize you don't know shit that is actually critical to architecture project success: risk & project management, cost, assembly and details, code and regulation, understanding consultant stuff, deal with nasty contractors, etc. 

My dream work place in the field is probably well rounded position in mid size firm doing decent design projects from start to finish.

2  · 
thisisnotmyname

Figure out a way to spend time job shadowing architects at a diverse group of several different firms to get a realistic view of daily work life in the profession.



Oct 25, 20 2:48 pm  · 
1  · 
Wood Guy

If you love designing buildings, and you think you'll be good at it, by all means become an architect. The amount of schooling and hoops to jump through are pretty intense, and a lot of people find out too late that they shouldn't be architects, for various reasons. But once you've made the time and money commitment, you might be stuck.

People with the skills to be an architect, and the ability to commit the time and money necessary, might be better off professionally if they studied medicine instead. My undergrad degree was civil engineering; several classmates went on to study medicine instead. One is still a good friend--she considered going to grad school for architecture, but studied medicine instead. Now she's a neurosurgeon and makes in a couple of months what I make in a year. She can afford to hire me to design her house (though she didn't, grrr) and will retire young. I won't. But I love my job, and while she enjoys aspects of her job, she doesn't love it. Other friends are attorneys, and they all say that what I do seems to require a lot more knowledge, yet they make about twice what I do. 

Oct 25, 20 5:53 pm  · 
4  · 
thatsthat

The workload in arch school is very intense for absolutely no reason. If you are not committed, you'll want to leave very quickly. The profs know that and they bank on it to weed out those that don't want to be there.  Financially, if you know that you will need a part-time job to get you through, that is something to consider. Materials are expensive and a never-ending cost.  There is very little time to do much outside of studio. If you do something outside of studio, you are often labeled the slacker for not being in studio as much as your studio mates. This is dumb. Do your work but go enjoy college too.  

There is a huge difference between what you do in school vs. working. This accounts for a lot of the strife you are probably referring to. If you really enjoy doing the work - the actual work of figuring out design problems and how to communicate your ideas - you'll enjoy this profession. I made it through (somedays I still don't know how that happened) and now enjoy my job, my firm, and my coworkers. I'm not rich, and could probably make more if I had pursued another field, but I'm not living paycheck to paycheck, I do go on vacation every year, and will be able to retire someday. That is more than I can say for some of my college friends who graduated with degrees in psychology, elementary education, and English.

Oct 26, 20 5:56 pm  · 
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archi_dude

I did a lot of other activities in school. Was always labeled the slacker even though I just got in early and didnt watch movies on my laptop all day. After the 1st job, no one cares about your school portfolio ever again. I wish I "slacked" off even more in college. The memories, friends, adventures and social situations I experienced far out valued making doodles and renderings in school.

2  · 
thatsthat

Same here, archi_dude. Most of my friends were from my extracurricular activities, not from studio. I really cherish those friends and the memories we have together. A lot of them are still my closest friends. While a lot of my classmates were killing themselves in studio, we were having the time of our lives. While I was not a top student, in retrospect, I feel like I got the best of both college experiences.

 · 
bowling_ball

People think they have to spend every waking hour in studio, and they absolutely don't. I spent the fewest hours in studio of anybody in my class. I showed up at 10, worked, went home at 5 or 6. Didn't burn myself out. Our class sizes were small but I'm literally the only one to go on to get my license. Studio culture can definitely be a chaotic, fun experience, but it can equally be toxic and it definitely doesn't reflect 95% of professional firms.

1  · 
randomised

It is simple self-preservation: discourage as many people as possible to go into architecture and our job suddenly is a tiny little bit less insecure. There are too many architects already, go do something else instead of contributing to the race to the bottom of our beloved profession, get off our lawn! 

Oct 27, 20 5:57 am  · 
 · 
Non Sequitur

I welcome competition with open arms. Editor: due to COVID-19 social distancing guidelines, open arms is intended as metaphorical and no actual hugs will be provided.

1  · 
Jaetten

What do you want to achieve with your career?

Would you be happy drawing handrails or assigning door numbers and keys for the first few years of your career?


Oct 30, 20 11:40 am  · 
 · 
tintt

Its a long road but if you stick it out the worst part is your clients falling in love with you and children crying when you leave because they want you to move in and be part of their family.

Oct 31, 20 6:33 pm  · 
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geezertect

Time to put down those special halloween brownies

 · 
tintt

I didn't see those. Which house was handing them out?

 · 
geezertect

The one with the children crying after the architect went home.

 ·  1
Wood Guy

While half of my clients are probably happy to be done with me, the other half become friends or at least enthusiastic supporters. I don't think I've had kids crying but the parents often tear up.

Geezer, if you've never had clients that happy with your work, maybe it explains why you're negative about this profession?...

1  · 

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