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Career and Education Opportunities for Architectural Drafters in Sacramento, California

There is a wide variety of career and education opportunities for architectural drafters in the Sacramento, California area. There are currently 18,100 working architectural drafters in California; this should shrink 2% to about 17,700 working architectural drafters in the state by 2016. This is not quite as good as the national trend for architectural drafters, which sees this job pool growing by about 9.1% over the next eight years. In general, architectural drafters prepare detailed drawings of architectural designs and plans for buildings and structures according to specifications provided by architect.

The income of an architectural drafter is about $25 per hour or $52,200 annually on average in California. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $21 per hour or $44,490 per year on average. Architectural drafters earn more than people working in the category of Drafting generally in California and less than people in the Drafting category nationally. Architectural drafters work in a variety of jobs, including: cadd drafter , architect, and draftsman.

The Sacramento area is home to forty-two schools of higher education, including six within twenty-five miles of Sacramento where you can get a degree as an architectural drafter. The most common level of education for architectural drafters is an Associate's, or other 2-year degree. You can expect to spend about two years studying to be an architectural drafter if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Architectural Drafter

In general, architectural drafters prepare detailed drawings of architectural designs and plans for buildings and structures according to specifications provided by architect.

Architectural drafters operate computer-aided drafting (CAD) equipment or conventional drafting stations to produce designs, working drawings, charts, forms and records. They also obtain and assemble data to finish architectural designs, visiting job sites to compile measurements as needed. Equally important, architectural drafters have to analyze building codes, by-laws, space and site requirements, and other technical documents and reports to establish their effect on architectural designs. They are often called upon to direct structural, electrical and mechanical designs and decide on a method of presentation to graphically represent building plans. Finally, architectural drafters draw rough and detailed scale plans for foundations, buildings and structures, on the basis of preliminary concepts, sketches, engineering calculations, specification sheets and other data.

Every day, architectural drafters are expected to be able to visualize how things come together and can be organized. They need to think through problems and come up with general rules. It is also important that they see details at a very fine level of focus.

It is important for architectural drafters to lay out and plan interior room arrangements for commercial buildings using computer-assisted drafting (CAD) equipment and software. They are often called upon to develop freehand drawings and lettering to accompany drawings. They also check dimensions of materials to be used and assign numbers to records of materials. They are sometimes expected to ready colored drawings of landscape and interior designs for presentation to client. Somewhat less frequently, architectural drafters are also expected to represent architect on construction site, ensuring builder adherence to layout specifications and advising on layout corrections, under architect's supervision.

They also have to be able to build landscape, architectural and display models And finally, they sometimes have to ready cost estimates, contracts, bidding documents and technical summaries for specific projects under an architect's supervision.

Like many other jobs, architectural drafters must be thorough and dependable and be reliable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Sacramento include:

  • CAD/CAM Specialist. Prepare detailed working diagrams of machinery and mechanical devices, including dimensions, and other engineering information.
  • Civil Draftsman. Prepare drawings and topographical and relief maps used in civil engineering projects, such as highways, bridges, pipelines, flood control projects, and water and sewerage control systems.
  • Civil Engineering Technician. Apply theory and principles of civil engineering in planning, designing, and overseeing construction and maintenance of structures and facilities under the direction of engineering staff or physical scientists.
  • Equipment Engineering Technician. Apply electrical theory and related knowledge to test and modify developmental or operational electrical machinery and electrical control equipment and circuitry in industrial or commercial plants and laboratories. Usually work under direction of engineering staff.
  • Mechanical Engineer. Perform engineering duties in planning and designing tools, engines, and other mechanically functioning equipment. Oversee installation, operation, and repair of such equipment as centralized heat, gas, and steam systems.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Architectural Drafter Training

San Joaquin Delta College - Stockton, CA

San Joaquin Delta College, 5151 Pacific Ave, Stockton, CA 95207. San Joaquin Delta College is a large college located in Stockton, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 20,480 students. San Joaquin Delta College has 3 areas of study related to Architectural Drafter. They are:

  • Architectural Technology/Technician, less than one year, associate's degree, and two to four year which graduated nineteen, zero, and zero students respectively in 2008.
  • Drafting and Design Technology/Technician, less than one year and two to four year which graduated sixteen and zero students respectively in 2008.
  • Civil Drafting and Civil Engineering CAD/CADD, associate's degree and two to four year which graduated five and zero students respectively in 2008.

Sacramento City College - Sacramento, CA

Sacramento City College, 3835 Freeport Blvd, Sacramento, CA 95822-1386. Sacramento City College is a large college located in Sacramento, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 26,175 students. Sacramento City College has less than one year, one to two year, associate's degree, and two to four year programs in Drafting and Design Technology/Technician which graduated eight, three, eleven, and zero students respectively in 2008.

Cosumnes River College - Sacramento, CA

Cosumnes River College, 8401 Center Parkway, Sacramento, CA 95823-5799. Cosumnes River College is a large college located in Sacramento, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 14,518 students. Cosumnes River College has 2 areas of study related to Architectural Drafter. They are:

  • Architectural Technology/Technician, one to two year, associate's degree, and two to four year which graduated two, ten, and zero students respectively in 2008.
  • Architectural Drafting and Architectural CAD/CADD, one to two year, associate's degree, and two to four year which graduated two, two, and zero students respectively in 2008.

Sierra College - Rocklin, CA

Sierra College, 5000 Rocklin Road, Rocklin, CA 95677-3397. Sierra College is a large college located in Rocklin, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 21,608 students. Sierra College has 2 areas of study related to Architectural Drafter. They are:

  • Drafting and Design Technology/Technician, two to four year.
  • Architectural Drafting and Architectural CAD/CADD, less than one year, associate's degree, and two to four year which graduated one, four, and zero students respectively in 2008.

American River College - Sacramento, CA

American River College, 4700 College Oak Dr, Sacramento, CA 95841-4286. American River College is a large college located in Sacramento, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 37,601 students. American River College has one to two year, associate's degree, and two to four year programs in Drafting and Design Technology/Technician which graduated nine, twelve, and zero students respectively in 2008.

ITT Technical Institute-Rancho Cordova - Rancho Cordova, CA

ITT Technical Institute-Rancho Cordova, 10863 Gold Center Dr, Rancho Cordova, CA 95670-6034. ITT Technical Institute-Rancho Cordova is a small school located in Rancho Cordova, California. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 816 students and an admission rate of 50%. ITT Technical Institute-Rancho Cordova has an associate's degree program in CAD/CADD Drafting and/or Design Technology/Technician which graduated thirty-six students in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Planning and Scheduling Professional: The PSP certification is to recognize specialists who meet a demanding set of planning and scheduling criteria by a rigorous examination, experience, education and ethical qualificaion.

For more information, see the AACE International (Association for the Advancement of Cost Engineering through total cost management) website.

Certified Transfer Station Technical Associate: This certification was developed to address the increased interest in transfer stations and provide transfer station managers and others the opportunity to learn more about transfer station design and operation.

For more information, see the Solid Waste Association of North America website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Sacramento, California

Sacramento, California
Sacramento, California photo by Urdangaray

Sacramento is located in Sacramento County, California. It has a population of over 463,794, which has grown by 13.9% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Sacramento, 93, is below the national average. New single-family homes in Sacramento are valued at $185,300 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, nine hundred thirty-four new homes were constructed in Sacramento, down from 1,337 the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Sacramento are health care, educational services, and public administration. For men, it is construction, public administration, and accommodation and food services. The average travel time to work is about 23 minutes. More than 23.9% of Sacramento residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 8.4%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Sacramento is 14.7%, which is greater than California's average of 12.3%.

The percentage of Sacramento residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 36.9%, is less than both the national and state average. Pearly Gate Missionary Baptist Church, Peace Lutheran Church and Parkview Presbyterian Church are among the churches located in Sacramento. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the LDS (Mormon) Church and the Assemblies of God.

Sacramento is home to the Southern Pacific Shops and the Bing Maloney Golf Course as well as Alkali Flat North Historic District and Silva Field. Shopping centers in the area include Farmers Center Shopping Center, Florin Square Shopping Center and Franklin and Florin Shopping Center. Visitors to Sacramento can choose from Best Western Sutter House, Best for Less Motel-Cababa Lodge and AAA Residence Inn for temporary stays in the area.