I was recently reading an article from Architectural Record about the current job market and its impact on young to mid-level architects.
The article is interesting on a number of levels, including some of the statistics (in Q1 of 2009, A/E firms cut 88,000 jobs…wow). However, what caught my attention most is the question, “What are our schools preparing young architects to do instead?” The best architecture programs are amazing at producing designers, thinkers, artists (I applaud my alma mater Virginia Tech for this). Very few are known for their ability to prepare intern architects for some of the other professional aspects of the career though. How many of us had management or marketing classes as a regular or required part of our curriculum for example?
The lack of exposure to some of those aspects of the corporate world produce back-up plans like many mentioned in the article: homemade ice cream maker, ski instructor, pastry chef.
At the risk of sounding anti-creative program (I’m totally not!)…would it be out of place to include a business or database class in all architecture programs to prepare our young architects with related, but non-design skills?