Things I Didn't Learn in Architecture School...But Figured Out Soon Thereafter

For someone who loves architecture, architecture school itself felt like one big mindfuck after another.

Imagine you love kittens. And you go to kitten school. And they tell you to kill kittens. And they show no remorse. And you're like, "WTF? I thought we were here for kittens! What is this shit?!"

That's how architecture school felt to me. Minus the kittens.

Thing Number 7 in The Real Architect's Handbook: Things I Didn't Learn in Architecture School tells us that

The rush and exhileration you experience in studio may be inversely proportional to how much you will enjoy working for a firm.
I find this to be personally exciting because basically it means that since I spent studio wondering what was wrong with my studio critic (Personality disorder? Needs to get laid? Can't see past her own narrow ideologies? Just a bitch?), I should quite enjoy working for a firm.
Number 49: Architecture in school is completely different from the profession. Do not approach working in an office the same way you approached your school work.
Wait, wait, so nobody is going to encourage me to design something that looks totally ridiculous that you couldn't pay someone to actually live in?
Number 53: Do not take design strategies or operations learned in studio too seriously [b]ecause they are often inapplicable or useless in the office.
Great! Wait a minute... so then what was the point of studio? What was the point of spending all those years exhausted... and getting so deep into debt... and wrecking relationships... and aging prematurely...???
Number 77: Expect a period of post-traumatic stress disorder after you graduate. Do not make any important decisions during this time.
This is so depressing.
Number 48: Compared to other professional school graduates, architects are the least well paid and they are also required to take the most exams to become licensed.
So I might have to get another job as well to pay my student loan debt? But won't I be, like, exhausted? And, as I recall from architecture school, it was unusually difficult to be creative when in a constant state of exhaustion. Well, shit. Maybe I can be a TA like LinkedIn Updates tells me that most of my former classmates are.
Number 64: If your studio instructor is a recent graduate, be alarmed. The likelihood that s/he is teaching because s/he cannot find other gainful employment and therefore has little experience or skills to actually impart, is extremely high.


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