Architecure a worthless professions

Is a career in architecture rewarding ?

  • Yes, a career in architecture is rewarding

    Votes: 8 44.4%
  • No, a career in architecture is not rewarding

    Votes: 1 5.6%
  • Go into another profession (e.g. examples)

    Votes: 1 5.6%
  • I don't care :)

    Votes: 8 44.4%

  • Total voters


Registered Senior Member
Architecture a worthless professions ?

Hello Everyone, i wanted what you all think of holding a degree in architecture. I would like to go into that field but heard that i pays very little,
a lot of unpaid overtime, little or no benefits, difficult to become stablished for the effort you have to put into it and basically that it is an underappreciated profession.Currently i am majoring in electrical engineering, and i suck terrible at it. I would appreciate any suggestions.Thank You.

You can read more about it here:

Posted by Get out of Architecture on August 21, 2003 at 09:53:43:

It is an awful profession. Stress, Low pay, depressing. You won't work for Frank Ghery. Trust me, you won't work for anyone even remotely as inspiring. My professors used to tell me 10 years ago, "You have to love architecture in order to practise it, the pay is not that good."

Well, as a student with my head up my ass, you think, "Gee, I really like this, I get to design all these great things, it can't be that bad". Well, I am here to save you the trouble. It sucks. There will be responses to this posting saying that "its a noble cause" or "he must be pigeonholed into doing something miserable all day like door schedules" or " Everyone gets something different" or any other self important justification that they sold themselves on. But I am telling you the whole truth. Others are trying to justify there mistake of going into architecture. You see, at one time it was a great profession, and It would take me a great deal of time to tell you exacly what went wrong to the profession, and maybe I will elaborate, sometime. But in this day and age, there are so many more choices.

Back in the old days when people used pencils, being an architect was a great thing you could do with it. We live in the nano-age, architecture is a dying profession, make the choice now before its too late. Believe me or not, I warned you.

and here:

Posted by Jim on August 28, 2003 at 10:12:13:
In Reply to: Is architecture a fun/rewarding career ? posted by Ben on August 25, 2003 at 09:49:46:

Ben, its nice that you have been accepted into a university, and now you want to be inspired? I guess I should chalk it up to your youth and inexperience, but inspiration is something that you must obtain for yourself. Only through dilligent study of the real world (the world OUTSIDE of the classroom) will you find reality. Schools are businesses, and it is not in their interests to reflect the real world, but instead to foster an image made by academia to entice young ones to spend the major $$$$ needed to get a diploma which may have no practical worth. They may have "placement" assistance after graduation, but there is no guarantee that it will succeed for you or be the joy that you anticipate.

You want to be **CREATIVE** and that is a good thing IF you have a MAJOR creative drive in you. No, not the dillitante dalliance in some idle sketches, and amusing building tours. If that drive is really strong in you, then architecture will be one of the very few occupations where you can fulfill that creative urge. If that is your prime motivation, and NOT the desire to be rich or famous, then you may, MAY, find happiness in architecture.

To this end, however, you must also be REALISTIC in learning about the real world of average architects. The odds against you're becoming the next Frank Lloyd Wright or anyone nearly so famous, is scant indeed. I don't mean to berate your talent (I havn't seen anything here of your 'talent') but talent alone will get you almost nowhere. More and more every day, architecture is a BUSINESS, and if you are not good at business matters, it is highly unlikely that you will succeed without a good business partner. I wish I could say that becoming a popular (read: successful) architect is as easy as hanging out the "shingle" (name/profession sign) of a doctor or lawyer, yet even they can struggle for years! Yet thier clients MUST come to them for relief from some problem; your clients will come only if they have enough money to indulge themselves in the 'arts', though in fact, architecture TODAY is mostly engineering. You don't like the math and nature of engineering? Then you had better stear clear of architecture. True, VERY talented men can sometimes (rarely) find themselves hired as "Designers" by established firms, and paid to merely create concept sketches or renderings, while leaving the business and engineering aspects to others, but such situations are RARE. If you are content to design only single family homes, it is possible to stay small and have a modest income while not having to worry much about major engineering or business concerns, but the market for architects in that area is very small. The greatest creative outlet is in commercial or government designs, but these jobs almost always go to established firms that ALSO know the local and national political figures to 'suck up to', to put it bluntly. Being successful in commercial architecture also requires lots and lots of your time, such that you may seldom see your friends or family. It is an all-consuming career, if you are to be successful, and unsuccessful commercial architects usually don't last too long. Comptition will be fierce, and talent will be only a part of what you must have to be accepted by those with the BIG Bucks ($$$$) needed for such profits. In this mileau you will need a "team" of associates to manage the many aspects of big jobs, and you may find yourself shunted off to the side as accountants, lawyers, specifiers, and others take center stage; it will NOT be a "sole creator" experience. You must ask yourself if your creative urges are enough to put up with all these other distractions. Are they?

So, if you just want to be inspired without regard to reality, just read beautiful picture books on beautiful buildings. If you want to succeed in the practice of architecture, firstly determine if you are a good businessman with the shrewdness to know where the money is and how to get it and not have any morals about 'stabbing others in the back' to get what you want, because that is most assuredly what they will do to you whenever they can. In thie, Satan's world, the truly good guy always finishes last, since God promises blessings to the righteous only in His New World, shortly to come. If you aren't too good at engineering matters, you would be foolish to continue at the great expense and risk that such education entails these days. Be "inspired" Ben, but also be realistic with your "head out of the sand" so to speak. The days of Christopher Wren and even FLW are long gone; it is a world of giant multinational corporations today who 'eat' artistic types for lunch! If you have pride and integrity, you will never succeed in such a world, but you can use those good qualities to become a craftsman in some aspect of architecture, and, as the Bible says: "Behold a man skilled with his hands; before kings he will station himself." To become an artisan is also difficult, but it can often provide the artistic release and satisfaction --if not the money-- that architecture cannot. Best Wishes.

Both texts came from the site
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Achitects deserve low pay and all that, all the do is point and hold a clipboard and wear a construction hat... oh wait!, that's a civil engineer, nevermind. Artists are usuallt grossly underpaid. They are not looked up to in this society as much as they used to be... so sad...
Well, fresh, publicly preferred ideas are rare now.... Just look, it seems that house designs (the house only, not anything else) nowadays lack variety compared to interior design..... but maybe it's just here in my home-country that architecture and interior design is 'somehow' separated......
I considered architecture but decided against it since there's little or no money to be made in it unless you're very very lucky.
The IT industry, it pays well but it's boring as hell.

I think I'd be best suited as bartender somewhere in the south of Spain, or a guide for hiking trips. I need to be outside, I hate officework.
ILikeSalt said:
Artists are usuallt grossly underpaid. They are not looked up to in this society as much as they used to be... so sad...

When ever were they "looked up to in this" society?
By the way, which society, and which artists?

Why's it "sad" anyway?
Do "artists," whichever kind, actually do anything useful?

DCLXVI said:
... there's little or no money to be made in it unless you're very very lucky.

Some say that skill begets luck.
Rappaccini said:
Some say that skill begets luck.

It's a big part for sure, but there are plenty of artists and writers out there that are doing great stuff but aren't getting any recognition, and plenty of crappy ones that are.

Same goes for architects, you need to get lucky to get ahead.
You basically have three choices:

1) Find something you're passionate about, no matter how crazy, and go after it hard.
---> You'll probably suffer lots of losses, but its the only way to attain true greatness. You know that poem - you'll never know whats on the other side of the rainbow unless you check it out yourself.

2) Pick something practical, secure and average
---> Not architecture. Get an easy degree and do what you're told. You won't suffer, but you're life might be bland compared to #1.

3) Study your ass off for a high paying job that you might not like.
---> This actually isn't that bad, if you like money. Just remember that a lot of these people end up as hapless school teachers 'cause they don't know how to go for the throat.

I don't know you, so I can't recommend a career. the only thing I can recommend is sticking with your decision.
well, DC, when I was finishing my high-school, I also considered Architecture as one major to take, but I turned myself down by choosing Computer Engineering........
turns out that Computer Enginering kills me......
Architects roll in it if they are any good.
Most architects will be poor for a while after college but there are plenty of insanely loaded architects. My friends dad for one is ridiculously rich, buying $100 000 cars and $600 000 boats on a whim and has a big multi million dollar palace like house he designed himself. Not doing too badly at all. He's pretty old though.
You know, I agree, my brother got a masters in Architecture from the Rhode Island School of Design 8 years ago, and he's having a miserable time with it. Appalingly low pay, unpaid overtime, long hours. Where there is work, near cities, the cost of living is high. And there is also the fact that you have to get "registered" as an architect, as if 6 years of school wasn't enough. This might have been a good idea in the beginning, to ensure people got practical experience before designing a building, but the system is corrupt. Basically, my brother does the whole design, and then the registered architect stamps it. Its like the guild system in the middle ages. To add insult to injury, you have to pay to get registered. You are also subject to the whim of your registered employer to sign off on your practical experience. In reality, they do not want their employees to get registered, because it means they can go work for themselves. I got a bachelors in art from a state college, and I make twice as much money, with no college loans to pay off! Granted, I got into product design. Ironically, you can make more money as an architectual model maker.
...and its far from a worthless profession, these people are designing our environment.
In the UK, architects make loads of money and you dont even need to be creative to be succesful. Im studying Building Surveying at university just now and I know this is a fact; you would either have to be stupid or really bad in marketing to not do well. I suppose its like anything though, if there is an influx of people out into the business world with a degree the same as everyone else then pay wont be so high, so I dont know what the situation is where you live.
As for my subject; when I get a degree, Ill be making:
at age 22: £13,000 ? £20,000
at age 25 (chartered): £16,000 - £32,000
at age 40: £32,000 - £45,000
As these are 2 years out of date then pay will be slightly higher. Of course, salary varies with location and status but isnt bad for a largly 9 - 5 job.

As to if its a rewarding job (Architecture), then I would say yes, but if you have no interest in it then it wont be and will be tiresome. I dont know, you know best yourself.
Hello everyone. When i said worthless profession i did not mean that it is unimportant, only that the pay is poor. Right now i am majoring electrical engineering and conductiing some basic research in the biology department of my school. Engineering is crushing me and i suck at research. When i talked to my mentor about it he told me that architecture would not be a good profession to go into. He said that i should check out being a biostatistician. It would be great if i could find a profession where i can be creative artistically speaking since i have fairly poor analytical skills. Now i am really confused. I thought i was good in science and math in high school. When i got to college i realized that i sucked. Majoring in engineering might not have been the best decision. My grades and my overall GPA are far from being good. Well i guess i can only blame myself for that.
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