Best CC in California for arch?


Hi guys, 

I'm making the career switch to architecture after a career in the legal field and I'm wondering where to start. I have a non design bachelors degree so I've decided to sign up for one of the local CC programs in Los Angeles. 

I know PCC is the best one but it's too far and is only a transfer program. I'm looking for a program that's both design focused and practical enough to enter the field as a tech. Later on I'd like to transfer to a masters in arch. 

With PCC out the next best programs I've found are at Pierce College and Glendale College. 

Which program would be better? Which one looks like it would be the most practical and yet still be designed focus enough to transfer to a university?

^ Pierce College

^ Glendale College 

I would really appreciate the advice guys. 

Feb 12, 14 12:04 am

Is there anyone that can help? 

Feb 13, 14 10:18 am

Why don't you just get your Bachelor's in Architecture? You may have to put more money up front, but in the end you'll save money because you won't need a Masters... just some food for thought. 

Feb 13, 14 11:30 am

I at least want to save money by taking a years worth of design courses and build a portfolio. 

Starting a BA at the local uni is too costly. California CCs are super cheap. 

Feb 13, 14 12:16 pm
Marina CM

Are you sure you will be able to transfer to a masters with these programs? Architecture is not just about colors and fancy designs, it is also about mechanics, construction, function, social use, etc. Your portfolio must talk about this through drawings, and for a masters it should be strong. I don't think you will be able to acquire this knowledge with a certificate and experience as a draftsperson... it is my honest opinion. Why don't you enroll as a half time student at your local uni while you work as a drafter? 

Feb 13, 14 6:59 pm

You can do that?  Is it hard to land a drafting /arch tech  job? I wouldn't mind doing a free internship either.

I was only going to go for a masters because I already have a BA in non design related field. I was under the impression that many people with out a design background go into m.arch programs all the time? 

Feb 13, 14 7:32 pm

I would recommend to just go to PCC. I went there and its well worth the drive I was driving from Hollywood to Pasadena, you wont get traffic at night when you get out of studio.

Feb 13, 14 9:11 pm

I would love PCC but after two years you don't really get anything. No skills certificate or anything. It's just a transfer program and life is so hectic in LA I'm afraid that if I couldn't go all the way to a masters/second bachelors. I at least want to come out with something. 

Feb 13, 14 9:16 pm

Is Santa Monica College an open enrollment community collage? I'm looking at the admissions page and at first glance it looks as though its not. Am I reading this right?

Feb 14, 14 12:26 am

Hmm and why would a certificate matter? I did my first 2 studios at PCC and I can easily tell you that CC will prepare you for any University you decide to go to.  If you are trying to get a certificate then just go to a Trade tech and get a drafting certificate, it means nothing. I actually attended LAVC , LACC , PCC then I transferred to Woodbury University. Each school played its roll in my education but, PCC was strictly for my Architecture courses.

Feb 14, 14 12:29 am

Glendale college isn't far from PCC. If you're there might as well go to the best program

Feb 14, 14 12:30 am

You're right. I should just go to PCC. I'm curious about SMCs interior arch program too. 

I'm still new to California but is SMC an open enrollment CC? I noticed a petition for re-admission on the admissions web page. I'm a bit confused. Do they deny people? 

Feb 14, 14 12:37 am

I can't tell you anything SMC I never attended there.

Feb 14, 14 12:59 am

Hey, so I've taken classes at PCC, GCC, and Pierce.

First off, if you are serious about transferring into a M.Arch program then I would have to say PCC is your best bet. As someone with a nonarchitectural bachelors most schools will be looking to make sure you can think like a designer. And frankly, SoCal arch schools love to accept unrelated bachelors. You guys are full of fresh outlooks. You can even take discovery courses like Sci-Arc's Make + Meaning or UCLA's Jumpstart. They are tailored to people like you who want to get into architecture after doing something unrelated. 

That said, Pierce is out. When I was going there Arch classes were offered so rarely that I went to PCC and transferred before Pierce had a class on the schedule. I did all my GE's there though.

Glendale is a more technical program. You'll learn everything you need to know about how to use programs but I can't speak of their design studios. East LA is supposed to have a pretty good program as well, so said my teachers at PCC.

You can get an AA in Architecture in any of them (except Pierce) but honestly its probably the least important document. But if you learn how to use the programs you can get a job. I picked and chose classes where I needed them. I transferred with only the first year of design courses at PCC and a couple random technology classes like GCC's Revit class.

Mar 5, 14 11:07 pm

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