Back to Architecture School? Maybe
by Rex L. Carpenter, AIA, LEED AP
Vice President, HKS Architects Inc., Dallas
Your poll for last week was timely as I prepare to send my son to Illinois Institute of Technology to begin his studies in architecture. I find myself at times wanting to be the one going, full of hope, excitement and more than a little trepidation to study in Crown Hall, live in Helmut Jahn’s dormitory and play in the Rem Koolhaas Student Center. As a parent, I want him to be successful, as an architect I have great expectations and can’t help but wonder at the comments from my fellow professionals: “Couldn’t talk him out of it?”
My education at Texas Tech University prepared me for what has been an almost 30-year career—very rewarding personally, professionally, and financially. I can only hope he is as well prepared for a rapidly changing profession. We toured several schools as father and son, and I marveled at the breadth of each new approach and excitement of faculty. As we in the profession continue to debate architecture education, I believe the program he selected offers an opportunity to learn how a building goes together, how to work with others, and to explore the profession.
So, do I want to go back? With his opportunity and knowing what I know now … maybe a little (…but I’d have to learn AutoCAD).
What do you think?