Job Title: Architect
Type of Company: I am a consulting architect. I specialize in technical consulting on building construction projects and in forensic architecture as it pertains to building-related litigation.
Education: BA, Political Science, The Citadel •• BFA, Fine Arts, & BArch, Rhode Island School of Design
Previous Experience: I have been a principal in my own or other firms for over 30 years, with a one year break as a project architect in another firm.
Job Tasks: I am self-employed and most of my clients are other architects, engineers or landscape architects, or attorneys. I help architects produce the written portion of construction contracts, which is the written description of all materials that are used in the construction of a building, and I assist attorneys to prepare for court cases involving building construction failures and personal injury cases involving faulty building construction. I sometimes testify in court in these cases.
I am responsible for every aspect of running my business, including bookkeeping, advertising and marketing, and doing the technical work. It involves a lot of variety and is never boring.
Best and Worst Parts of the Job: My job is fun and satisfying because I am responsible for what materials are used and how they are used on all types of buildings, from houses, to apartment buildings, to hospitals and schools. I get to see the results of my work for many years after I am done, and I work with some very interesting and intelligent people. It also pays pretty well, which allows me to take time off and enjoy life.
Unfortunately my work is also very technically exacting, and must be very accurate, or people can be hurt or lose a lot of money if I am wrong, which makes it quite stressful sometimes. Sometimes deadlines and other client requirements do not allow me to enjoy other activities when I want to do so.
1.) Study very hard in high school, so that you can be accepted to a good college.
2.) Take as many art classes in middle school and high school as are offered, to see if your talents lead you to an arts-oriented career.
3.) Study English and be very good at spelling. Computer spell-checkers will not help you much of the time.
4.) Be a critical thinker, and analyze why the things you see around you are the way they are.
5.) Learn to relate well to other people. My job involves being a team player most of the time.
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