How Do I Become a Project Architect?

Jessica F. Black

Years of education and experience will be required to become a project architect, and your first step should be to map out an educational plan that will assist you with entrance into this profession. Due to the length of time and the amount of dedication that it takes to become a project architect, you may want to spend an adequate amount of time researching the industry before formally making a career decision. Architecture is a primarily computer based field, and you will need to have an advanced understanding of mathematical application, finance, and various computer sciences. Once you have decided on this career, you should apply to several four year universities to ensure entry in an accredited bachelor's of science degree (B.S.) program in architecture.

Design, oversight and project budgeting may be among the tasks of a project architect.
Design, oversight and project budgeting may be among the tasks of a project architect.

The first year of an undergraduate program is usually devoted to prerequisites, and you will need to successfully complete these courses before advancing to coursework in architecture. Once you begin working directly on your major, coursework may include introduction to architecture, building material, basic architectural drafting, advanced computer-aided drafting, construction management, construction methods, surveying and codes, specifications, and contracts. You may want to consider an internship in architecture during your second year of college in order to begin applying your knowledge to a hands-on training experience. Internships will be extremely important because experience is almost always required to become a project architect.

Most locations will require that you are a licensed architect before officially entering this profession, and the requirements for licensing usually include a specific amount of experience, which internships can provide. The Internet is an excellent resource to research jurisdictional requirements for architecture positions, and you should be well-informed on all procedures needed to work in your chosen area. You should take advantage of all experience opportunities offered throughout your college career. Although a B.S. will help you become a project architect, you may want to consider continuing your education in order to earn a master's degree in architecture.

An advanced degree may increase your employment opportunities, starting salaries, and career advancement options. Finance courses may also help you to become a project architect because this position may require that you do an extensive amount of project budgeting, and various business courses can aid you with low budget building. Leadership and communication skills are also important in this profession because you will often oversee other professionals and should be able to work well with a team.

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