22 Jobs in Architecture for Recent Graduates (With Salaries)
By Indeed Editorial Team
Updated 15 September 2022 | Published 11 October 2021
Updated 15 September 2022
Published 11 October 2021
The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.
University graduates with a degree in architecture can serve a variety of roles in this field. Depending on their preference, they can also apply their knowledge to job positions in other fields and industries. By reviewing some potential career options, you can better determine which path works best for you. In this article, we explain what types of careers you can pursue with an architectural degree and list 22 jobs in architecture and related industries that involve design or building principles.
22 jobs in architecture and other industries
There are a variety of career paths you can pursue after earning a bachelor's degree in architectural design. It can provide you with the design skills and technical capabilities necessary to find job opportunities in multiple industries. Here are 22 jobs in architecture and related industries you can gain with an architecture degree:
1. CAD designer
Average base salary: $64,569 per year
Primary duties: Computer-aided design (CAD) designers are architectural professionals who draft schematics for large-scale projects. They're responsible for developing 2D images and mathematical 3D models of design concepts for a building team. Afterwards, they transfer their documents to construction and design staff
Average base salary: $67,503 per year
Primary duties: Architectural photographers are creative professionals who use high-quality equipment to take photographs of buildings and interior spaces. They're responsible for depicting a space accurately, as real estate companies and similar businesses often hire them to advertise properties. They often use design and perspective knowledge to ensure their photographs are visually appealing.
National average salary: $70,927 per year
Primary duties: Lighting consultants are design professionals who plan and develop lighting systems for corporations, architectural firms and independent clients. They're responsible for visiting project sites to evaluate lighting features and meeting with clients to determine specifications. These professionals can enhance a building's natural light and ensure the system is functional.
National average salary: $73,638 per year
Primary duties: Graphic designers are creative professionals who use artistic and technical techniques to create visual concepts and layouts for different mediums, including advertisements and magazines. They can either work as independent freelancers or accept positions in a company. They're responsible for meeting client requirements on typeset, formatting, colour and other details.
Average base salary: $78,419 per year
Primary duties: Interior designers create functional and visually appealing indoor spaces for companies or individuals. They're responsible for drafting concepts, curating decor and consulting with their clients. They either work independently or alongside a design team, providing insight as builders assemble the project.
Average base salary: $78,698 per year
Primary duties: Draftspersons create detailed drawings of architectural designs for firms and government agencies. They're responsible for translating abstract concepts into technical plans that construction staff can use. They often develop a building project's precise instructions, then oversee CAD designers as they prepare the resulting images and models.
National average salary: $78,889 per year
Primary duties: Industrial designers work alongside engineers, marketing analysts and other professionals to develop new products. They're responsible for choosing materials, drafting design concepts and testing products to ensure they're functional. These professionals may help to manufacture varied items, including automobiles and medical equipment.
Average base salary: $83,691 per year
Primary duties: Archivists receive and maintain documents, drawings, images and other materials that have a unique value for museums or not-for-profits. They may use knowledge of building styles to guide their efforts while developing a cultural or time period-specific archive. They're also responsible for organising materials and overseeing storage procedures.
Average base salary: $83,772 per year
Primary duties: Building architects are design professionals who create private and public spaces, including houses and corporate office spaces. They can either work for an architectural firm or accept independent clients. They're often responsible for determining project costs and conducting environmental analyses on a project's chosen location.
National average salary: $84,229 per year
Primary duties: Restoration contractors are construction professionals who assess structures that have been damaged because of a natural disaster, water damage or age-related deterioration. If they work for government agencies or not-for-profits, they often restore historical sites. When they work for insurance companies, they're responsible for repairing features of all building types.
National average salary: $84,756 per year
Primary duties: Architects plan, develop and design original structures for a firm or advise a government agency on designing a location. They're responsible for creating visually appealing concepts that also serve a particular function, following a client's budget and adhering to safety regulations. They oversee a project from its initial development stages to the construction phase.
Average base salary: $86,412 per year
Primary duties: Production designers typically create sets for films, television shows or theatre programmes. They're responsible for using a script to guide their technical efforts, creating 3D models of sets and leading construction projects. They also understand how to incorporate basic architectural concepts into their schematics.
National average salary: $87,081 per year
Primary duties: Landscape architects develop and manage outdoor environments for government and corporate agencies, including parks, courtyards and transportation areas. They're responsible for creating spaces that adhere to environmental regulations and help improve a community. They also plan where to place buildings and pathways.
Average base salary: $87,236 per year
Primary duties: Carpenters are construction professionals who build and renovate structures for a company or independent client. They're responsible for learning a project's specifications, preparing materials and assembling the structure accurately. They typically cut materials into specific shapes and use fixtures to fit them together.
Average base salary: $87,554 per year
Primary duties: Video game designers develop the plot and internal system of games. They often use their knowledge of architectural theory, spatial awareness and creative design skills to create environments for video games, ensuring they're consistent and aesthetically pleasing. These professionals typically work on game titles for a particular corporation.
Average base salary: $89,204 per year
Primary duties: Structural designers are construction professionals who ensure new buildings, monuments and similar structures can remain stable and functional. They're often responsible for devising pipe systems, controlling sediment growth and monitoring water conditions. They also design structures that adhere to federal safety protocols.
Average base salary: $89,303 per year
Primary duties: Acoustic consultants are engineering professionals who resolve issues involving sound for a construction project using technical knowledge. They're often responsible for reducing unwanted noises in a location by testing each source of sound and analysing its properties. Afterwards, they may prepare their architectural solutions using CAD software.
18. Urban planner
Average base salary: $90,695 per year
Primary duties: Urban planners are public service professionals who build infrastructure for cities and towns, then manage the needs of residents. They're responsible for constructing new public spaces, creating community policies and developing transportation areas. They ensure their decisions comply with state and federal regulations.
Average base salary: $97,391 per year
Primary duties: Artists use their creative instincts and technical expertise to make visual representations of objects and people. They can apply architectural theories to their work, ensuring their pieces have logical proportions and use an environment effectively. Artists often work freelance, selling their work to galleries.
Average base salary: $105,946 per year
Primary duties: Environmental planners are design professionals who minimise the negative impact of a construction project on its surrounding area. They often analyse a project's construction plans and natural environment to determine the most sustainable design plan, ensuring the structure can adhere to certain regulations. They also conduct site inspections and draft their plans through specialised software.
21. Project manager
Average base salary: $119,749 per year
Primary duties: Architectural project managers supervise the design and construction procedure of specific endeavours. They may oversee the drafting process, coordinate with contractors and handle client interactions to ensure a structure can meet client expectations. They're also responsible for preparing a workflow timeline, preparing contracts for any hired personnel and tracking a project's expenditures.
Average base salary: $187,052 per year
Primary duties: Professors are academic professionals who work at universities, serving as lecturers and researchers. Architectural professors often teach undergraduate and graduate students fundamental concepts and provide career advice. They're often responsible for planning lesson content, completing research projects and publishing their work in topic-specific journals.
What industries can you work in with an architecture degree?
Here are some specific industries you may explore after graduating with an architecture degree:
Construction: Individuals in this industry require knowledge of structures, which you can gain while attending a degree programme.
Manufacturing: You can use your knowledge of mathematics, design and computer programming to find positions in manufacturing facilities.
Entertainment: Movie, theatre and television programmes may require set designers to build a series of specialised structures.
Government: Architects often work in a state government position or alongside an agency to provide town planning services in their local area.
Salary figures reflect data listed on Indeed Salaries at time of writing. Salaries may vary depending on the hiring organisation and a candidate's experience, academic background and location.
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