Monday, August 1, 2011

Architectural Drafting...Might Just Be For You

The average person never really gives much thought to all the wonderful and beautiful buildings and structures they pass by everyday. Structures like old wooden covered bridges or the tallest of skyscrapers. Architects played a part in the design in both of these and all the structures in between. Architects helped evolve our past into our present and will push us right on into the future, changing the face of the world along the way. They help make our homes and schools safer and more functional as well as more environmentally friendly.

Architectural drafting is certainly a highly respectable career choice, especially for those with some artistic talent and a little imagination. This career could take you down many paths from small scale building design to redesigning entire cities. Your career as an architect could very well leave a mark that will stand for hundreds of years. Your designs could possibly be stronger tornado or hurricane proof homes that could save lives in the future…possibilities are endless.

As the focus on green energy and saving energy becomes more mainstream, architectural drafting will continue to be a very lucrative career choice. Cities are changing the way they want to look and operate everyday. Buildings that can provide their own power source and are self sufficient are saving tons of money. A draftsman that can incorporate this new technology in with eye appealing structures will never have trouble working again. Just imagine a school or business that has a brand new office or building…but has no electric bill each month. That money saved can be put somewhere else where it can be of value or do more good.

Often times as a community sees one business “go green,” others will then want to follow in their footsteps. Green oriented businesses are almost always looked at by their communities as “the good guys.” An architectural draftsman that can do this for a city or business becomes much needed an sought after. In today’s economy and market a businesses ability to change and adapt often means whether it will succeed or fall by the wayside. Sometimes design changes are needed to keep a business completed…this makes you suddenly pretty valuable.

To get started in the field of architectural drafting you will need at least a two year associates degree. This education will provide you the training and skills you need to get you on your way. Computer aided drafting (CAD) skills are a must for today’s draftsman. These skills will allow your work to be put into action by the engineers and contractors, without CAD training you will have trouble competing in today’s workforce. A two year degree in this field can open doors for you that you never thought possible, and take you places you never dreamed of. Keeping up with developing technology will insure you are on top of your game as opportunities unfold before you for years to come. Even as you gain experience in the field, taking a class or two down the road is not out of the question.

Being a good problem solver is a good attribute you will need as an architectural draftsman. Engineers often run into problems that they need help with, and you will be the one they will turn to for that help. Might be something simple like re-routing water lines or moving complete walls to make room for something else. The draftsman will be depended on to make these types of decisions quickly and safely. You may have a crew of lesser experienced draftsman working under and you will be the one they turn to when they have questions of their own. As you continue to grow and learn in your trade the opportunities for you will too.

A draftsman can expect to start with a salary of say twenty to thirty thousand a year. This often depends on where you choose to work. A smaller city will most likely have less building going on than a larger one. The area in which you choose to live and work should be carefully planned ahead of time. Many draftsman are okay with the smaller cities and a more relaxed way of life. Others however are not, they want to be in the thick of things and work on big projects, or even several projects at one time. For these more ambitious draftsman they often make way more ambitious salaries as well.

Most all community colleges scattered across the U.S. have a drafting and design program from which you can get your start. ITT Tech in Tennessee, Grand Rapids Community College in Michigan, Herzing University in Wisconsin, these are just a few of the options available to you. In only two years time you could be on your way to improving the world around you and enjoying a brand new career. Not only that you could design your own dream home and have it just exactly like you want it. Could be a conventional style home with all the trimmings or something completely modern that will be the envy to all that see it.

Yes the architectural drafting career is wide open right now and the future looks even brighter. A draftsman can literally draw the road to his future one sketch at a time. What an exciting way to approach life. A career that allows financial success and so many other satisfying rewards as well. Natural disasters often force communities and towns to rebuild and redesign. Architectural drafting plays a huge part in this process. The towns suddenly have need to be built back, not only quickly but safer than they were before. Being a part of designing things that make people more comfortable as well as safer has to be the ultimate satisfaction and reward.


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