Architecture vs Dentistry


Hello Archinect,

I am currently in my first year of architecture school in Texas, and I am starting to doubt continuing my degree plan. Before applying, I was persistent for five years about architecture with my parents against Dentistry (I am trying to tire my bull-headedness). Before applying, I knew about the late hours of work on projects - I believed bargaining my starting 20's was issueless to achieve excellent grades. But after seeing the hundreds of people - and talented ones at that - in my university pursuing architecture/interior design, I don't think I can compare. 

From the upperclassmen, I always hear about graduates finding work through the AIAS. Though I find this easing my worry of unemployment, I still fear overworking myself past the 50-hour per week mark. I have seen the health toll of stress and overworking on my dad (project manager), and I'm afraid that the same will happen to me since I also have his health conditions. 

It seems that dentistry should be ideal, right? After all, it has sufficient pay, manageable hours, and work around the globe. Comparing the paths, architecture for me is debt-free, while dentistry will leave me 13,400 dollars in debt (this is only the tuition from the dentistry school nearby). They get paid by the number of patients rather than the time they spend at work. There is a high saturation of dentists in the United States, although this is from what I learned from dentists on YouTube. My skill set is significant in creativity and history and low in the sciences, so architecture seems like a sensible career path. 

I also want to mention that I love traveling and plan to stay for a long while with my grandparents in the Middle East. I'm not keen on money, and I don't plan on buying a house and starting a family within the next 15 years. I feel as though these desires weigh heavily on picking either architecture or dentistry.

I know that the final decision should be on my passion for either one of these - but I can't help picking on my doubts. It isn't to say that I fell out of love with Architecture - I still am. I would like to hear other opinions as to their experience in architecture. I would also like to know if their time in architecture has altered their other goals in life. Has anyone entered into architectural school and have doubts about their abilities compared to their classmates?

Apr 11, 21 11:39 am
Why is dentistry the only other option? Do you enjoy doing either? If you can ask to spend a day or two in the office of an architect, and of a dentist. See what the actual professions entail in the real world. Even better take some internships or part time jobs in other fields entirely. You’re what, 18 years old? It’s very normal to not know exactly what you want to do. Use this time to figure that out. And even if you change your mind/figure it out later in life that’s fine too. The less debt you incur the easier it will be for you to explore and change options over time.
Apr 11, 21 1:40 pm  · 

Thank you for commenting. My family has always dropped remarks about pursuing dentistry. I was always complimented how I was a hands-on person and that Dentistry matches me. But I think it's because I have damaged teeth and my family believes that being in dentistry can solve it without debt. I was thinking that as well, that maybe I don't know what I want to do and start shadowing. I thought about finishing a bachelor's in architecture with prerequisites for dental school, and decide later if I want to change fields.

Apr 11, 21 9:58 pm  · 

Check out civil engineering, or even the structural engineering subset. Higher pay, more collegial atmosphere, decent working hours. I personally could not be a dentist for any amount of money.  

Apr 11, 21 7:52 pm  · 

Definitely a role reversal. Pretty much everyone goes to a dentist, 95% of people can't afford an architect. I'd echo the other posts about looking at other professions too.

Apr 12, 21 1:33 pm  · 

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