You have just discovered a skill you seem to have a knack for…
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Before your drafting elective, there was not too much you thought you were great at. So now you are enrolling into architecture school on the premise that you are getting a degree in drafting… The bad news is, you have sadly mistaken the two. The good news it, you entire world view will be opened, and you will find a limitless passion for architecture. But you are going to run into some bumps along the way my friend.

Your first year in architecture school will be spent staring at the ceiling, wondering how long it will take to be the one building the fantastic models in the lobby. You will be confused and lost. Everyone was! Stay patient and do it. I mean, I am here now right?

Don’t get me wrong, you will be unsure sometimes. Uncertainty is the spice of life! Hell, you almost quit twice before finishing architecture school. You will find yourself in the advisors office sitting down waiting for your turn to switch majors. You are thinking about quitting. You are done with not knowing what is going on in class. You get anxiety throughout each class. You were never a quitter, and this will be the last time you doubt yourself. You better do what I did and go back to finish the semester. I will get to that further in this letter.

A few months into your first year of college a series of events are going to bring you into the worst bout of depression you have ever faced. I cannot tell you the personal challenges you will face, or give you the answers because these experiences are what will define you as a problem solver.



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I read a quote once that said, “Be the person you needed growing up.” You will be the person you need right now in just two years. Going into counseling and finding yourself from within will be your greatest achievement. You will no longer doubt yourself, you will be forever changed. You will be given the strength you never had but always needed. You will go from barely staying afloat to being the one helping others out of the water. You will be given passion for life you cannot comprehend, a passion you will spend the rest of your life spreading. For after you have found yourself, you will find purpose in helping others find themselves.

The counselor in your life will serve two purposes. He will also be the force which teaches you the most about architecture. He will teach you how to imagine beyond what you physically see. He will teach you how to look at life through other perspectives. You will learn how to both see yourself and see architecture for its ability to communication life, human connection, and community.





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To this day, I cannot explain what happened. A week after attempting to quit architecture school you will wake up one morning with a complete understanding. It was as if a dark fog had lifted. You will suddenly understand everything that once had no meaning. Architecture school after that point will give you liberating passion.

Third year and forward will be the most fun you have ever had! You will have met so many great friends. An unfathomable number of models later, you will have amassed hundreds of dollars into materials, equipment, books, and traveling up the East Coast! Who knew you would love coffee. You are going to go 0-100 on that coffee, real quick. If you are able I would say take your time, because I went from nothing to 4 cups a day!





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By the way, you are going to pursue your masters. Yay! More DEBT , just kidding! Graduate school will be a blast. This gets me to my next point. What if I told you I am about to live and work at a great firm in Dallas Texas? And yes, leaving home to find work will be nerve wrecking but trust me the experience will forever change you. You need this! Word of advice, be the person who says “yes”.  Please please take every essay and competition entry your professors give to you seriously. It will be the seemingly smallest opportunity that will lead you on this amazing journey.

Last but not least, you will find an undying passion doing something larger than you can imagine. This letter is but a single post on an architecture blog I have started with a good friend of yours, in order to reach out, inspire, and help others in architecture school. You will be inspired by people you have met that are making a difference in the world, and you will aspire to do the same.


You have just discovered a skill you seem to have a knack for. Just take life a day at a time, and enjoy your experience in architecture school!




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This post is part of the ArchiTalks series in which Bob Borson of Life of an Architect selects a theme and a group of us (architects who also blog) all post on the same day and promote each other’s blogs. This month’s theme is “Dear Future Architects”  Being open to interpretation I flipped the script onto myself. To read how others interpreted the theme please click the links below…



Enoch Sears – Business of Architecture (@businessofarch)
Dear Future Architects: A Confession

Bob Borson – Life of An Architect (@bobborson)

Marica McKeel – Studio MM (@ArchitectMM)
Dear Future Architects: 4 Perspectives

Lee Calisti, AIA – Think Architect (@LeeCalisti)
dear future architects

Evan Troxel – Archispeak Podcast / TRXL (@etroxel)
Dear Future Architects

Lora Teagarden – L² Design, LLC (@L2DesignLLC)
Dear Future Architects: 3 letters

Cormac Phalen – Cormac Phalen (@archy_type)
Dear Future Architects

Jeremiah Russell, AIA – ROGUE Architecture (@rogue_architect)
future architects: #architalks

Jes Stafford – MODwelling (@modarchitect)
Dear Future Architect, Listen Here

Eric T. Faulkner – Rock Talk (@wishingrockhome)
Dear Future Architect — A Time Capsule

Michele Grace Hottel – Michele Grace Hottel, Architect (@mghottel)
“Dear Future Architects,”

Meghana Joshi – IRA Consultants, LLC (@MeghanaIRA)
Dear Future Architects..

Michael Riscica – Young Architect (@YoungArchitxPDX)
Dear Future Young Architects… Please Quit Screwing Around!?!!

Stephen Ramos – BUILDINGS ARE COOL (@sramos_BAC)
Dear Future Architects: Don’t makes these 4 Mistakes

brady ernst – Soapbox Architect (@bradyernstAIA)
Dear Boy in the Plastic Bubble,

Brian Paletz – The Emerging Architect (@bpaletz)
Dear Future Architects

Michael LaValley – Evolving Architect (@archivalley)
Dear Future Architects, Be Authentic

Emily Grandstaff-Rice – Emily Grandstaff-Rice FAIA (@egrfaia)
Dear Future Architects…

Anthony Richardson – That Architecture Student (@anth_rich)
Dear Future Anthony

Drew Paul Bell – Drew Paul Bell (@DrewPaulBell)
Dear Future Architects, Do Your Thing

Greg Croft – Sage Leaf Group (@croft_gregory)
Dear Future Architect,

Jeffrey A Pelletier – Board & Vellum (@boardandvellum)
Dear Future Architects, Don’t Forget to Treat Your Clients with Respect

Kyu Young Kim – Palo Alto Design Studio (@sokokyu)
Dear Future Architects…

Jared W. Smith – Architect OWL (@ArchitectOWL)
Dear Future Architects…

Rusty Long – Rusty Long, Architect (@rustylong)
Dear future architects, never lose your optimism

Keith Palma – Architect’s Trace (@cogitatedesign)
Dear future architects, are you credible?

Jim Mehaffey – Yeoman Architect (@jamesmehaffey)
Dear Future Architects…

Ken Saginario – Twelfth Street Studio ()
Dear Future Architects…