Monday, January 30, 2012

To pursue MArch upon graduation or Not.

I am a student at the University of ... The program is a 4 year accredited program.  I am in my third year spring semester.  I was planning on doing my maters after my senior year, but now am having second thoughts and may want to work for a year,  I am presently going to be doing an internship in May upon the completion of this semester. I have mixed feelings about what is the right decision.  Also I have heard that I could sit for the exam without a masters degree.  Could you please let me know if this is correct and any advice you could offer.

First, let me address your last question.  In certain jurisdictions (very few), you may sit for the ARE with only a preprofessional degree such as you are receiving.  However, you will NOT be eligible for NCARB Certification which would be necessary for reciprocity - allowing you to become licensed in another state. 

Thus, it is STRONGLY encouraged for you to complete the NAAB accredited Master of Architecture which is necessary for NCARB Certification and all jurisdictions accept to meet the education standard.

Now to your other question - The decision to pursue graduates studies directly after your undergraduate degree or entering the workforce is "the million dollar question."  In my opinion, there is no "right" decision; it is what is best for you given your circumstances.  Consider the following:

Are you excited about pursuing graduate studies?  Will you stay at Buffalo or pursue graduate studies elsewhere?  Do you have the academic credentials to gain admission to graduate studies?  Are you able to secure employment?  See, there are many factors to consider.

I will also offer the following - for me, I went six years straight but did attend a different graduate program from my undergraduate.  I was ready to pursue graduate studies.  If you decide to work, I would suggest staying out a full year because a year is not enough to experience work; plus, it is not fair to your employer to leave for school only 12-15 months later.

Let me know if you have other questions.

Dr. Architecture

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