There are three primary areas of architecture:
- Construction and Building
However this section will focus on building related architects.
The field of architecture is expected to remain strong throughout the next decade; although competition will be intense.
Designing Structural Facilities
Architects who are employed in the field of designing structural facilities must take into consideration the aesthetics of their design as well as the functionality and safety of the finished facility.
Regulations, such as …
- ADA compliance
- Building codes
- Zoning laws
- Fire regulations
… must also be taken into consideration.
The aesthetics of the design must be counter-balanced with necessary structural elements such as electrical, plumbing, communications, heating, air conditioning and ventilation.
Architects are generally required to work alongside a number of other professionals involved in bringing the final design to fruition.
This may include:
- Other architects
- Interior designers
It is usually necessary for the architect to adhere to a budget when planning the design of a facility.
In some cases, the architect may need to focus on a particular theme or sentimental value; especially if the site is to be dedicated as a memorial.
Architects must not only be able to move the vision in their mind onto paper, but they also must be able to interact well with clients, co-workers and superiors in order to verbally express their vision.
The work shift of an architect may vary, depending on the current workload and deadlines. The job of an architect may be stressful given the demands of a particular project of if a deadline is tight. In general, architects tend to work at least 40 hours per week or more.
Employment Prospects for Architecture Jobs
About 20% of all architects are self-employed.
In some cases, architects work on a variety of building and facility types while in other situations architects may restrict themselves to a particular industry such as:
- Residential dwellings
Individuals looking for work in the field of architecture may find openings in small firms as well as government related agencies.
Job Search for Architecture Jobs
The best strategy for an individual who hopes to work in the field of architecture is to make strong contacts while still in college and attempt to obtain internships at lucrative and reputable firms.
Networking is extremely important within this industry.
Open architectural positions may also be listed with employment and recruitment agencies.
Resumes for Architecture Jobs
As the field of architecture is so strongly tied to education and experience, a chronological resume or a combination resume will work best for job seekers. The resume should highlight all relevant education, experience and licensure, if applicable.
Cover Letters for Architecture Jobs
The cover letter used by a job seeker looking for work in the field of architecture should mention how the applicant learned of the open position and absolutely mention any relevant reference.
This is extremely critical in this field, which is highly competitive and very reliant on networking to fill open positions.
Training & Qualifications for Architecture Jobs
At a minimum, entrance into the field of architecture requires:
- Four year degree
- An internship or practicum training
- Passing the Architect Registration Exam.
- In most cases, a qualified architecture program lasts five years.
There is a significant amount of competition within the field of architecture, so candidates who are trained in the latest forms of technology, such as computer aided drafting, are likely to find better employment prospects and higher paying salaries.
Most experts in the field of architecture strongly recommend for college students to seek internships while they are still in college in order to become acquainted with the industry and make the necessary contacts they will need in order to find a good job after graduation.
During the internship, individuals may take on a number of tasks such as researching and writing information and details needed by senior architects to complete projects.
Architecture Registration Examination
It is not uncommon for a graduate to work up to three years, receiving further on the job training, while they prepare to take the Architect Registration Examination.
The ARE is a requirement of every state, leading to licensure. The ARE is comprised of 9 areas which are intended to determine whether the candidate has the knowledge, skills and ability to successfully and competently perform the job duties required of an architect.
This is particularly important due to the fact that the licensed architects are responsible for the designs they produce.
Should a facility fail at any time in the future, the architect may be responsible for costs and well as any injuries that might result from property disintegration.
There is room for advancement in the field of architecture and a few schools offer students the option of pursuing a Masters degree.
As architects gain experience they are able to take on larger and more expensive projects and may also be considered for partner in an architecture firm.