Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Architecture and Actuarial Science

I’m currently a junior in high school and for years I’ve been considering architecture to be my future career. I feel like I’d love the job, but many say that during a recession, many architects suffer and many lose their jobs. With our hard to fully predict economy, I don’t want my life to depend on that and be at such risk. To be safe, I’m thinking about becoming an architect as well as an actuary and choose depending on circumstances. Do you have any advice as to what degrees I should try to earn? A bachelor’s in mathematics, or in architecture, or in actuarial science, or in art…? then masters?

I also heard that just a  bachelor’s alone in architecture is basically worthless…
But on the other hand, someone told me teachers with masters degrees are to be paid more and therefore schools such as my high school don’t like to hire them, if that’s at all true, is it also true with architects?

Also should I be looking for a school that is well known in the architectural field or one in the actuarial science field?
I applaud your interest in architecture and actuarial science, although they are quite different careers.  If you have not already done so, review the following career information from the Occupational Outlook Handbook.

Architect -

Actuary -

While I very much appreciate the fact that the architecture profession is tied to the economy, I would not use that as the sole factor in determining a career.  Think about career satisfaction.  Did you know that over 90% of architects would choose the same profession again?

As for which degree to pursue, I can suggest you consider obtaining an undergraduate degree in mathematics and afterwards pursuing a Master of Architecture.  It will take longer than an undergraduate in architecture and the Master of Architecture, but it will keep your options open.  For architecture, you must obtain the master degree for licensure or the Bachelor of Architecture.  A good resource to obtain is Becoming an Architect, 2nd Edition.

As for architecture schools, access -- I am not sure which school are appropriate for actuarial science.

Also, as a junior in high school, consider attending one of many summer programs offered for high school students.  One to consider is at the University of Illinois -- --.

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