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Career and Education Opportunities for Architects in Vancouver, Washington

Architect career and educational opportunities abound in Vancouver, Washington. Currently, 4,180 people work as architects in Washington. This is expected to grow by 34% to 5,600 people by 2016. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for architects are expected to grow by about 16.2%. In general, architects plan and design structures, such as private residences, office buildings, and other structural property.

Architects earn about $33 hourly or $70,000 yearly on average in Washington and about $33 per hour or $70,320 yearly on average nationally. Earnings for architects are better than earnings in the general category of Architecture in Washington and better than general Architecture category earnings nationally. People working as architects can fill a number of jobs, such as: design architect, commercial green building architect, and green building materials designer.

The Vancouver area is home to forty-eight schools of higher education, including one within twenty-five miles of Vancouver where you can get a degree as an architect. The most common level of education for architects is a Master's degree. It will take about six years to learn to be an architect if you already have a high school diploma, or just 2 years if you have a Bachelor's degree.


Architect video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, architects plan and design structures, such as private residences, office buildings, and other structural property.

Architects integrate engineering elements into a unified layout. They also direct efforts of staff working on preparing drawings and specification documents. Equally important, architects have to ready data regarding layout or construction time. They are often called upon to confer with clients to establish the functional and spatial requirements of structures. They are expected to conduct periodic on-site observation of work during construction to track adherence to plans. Finally, architects administer construction contracts.

Every day, architects are expected to be able to think through problems and come up with general rules. They need to articulate ideas and problems. It is also important that they listen to and understand others in meetings.

It is important for architects to ready operating and maintenance manuals, studies, and reports. Somewhat less frequently, architects are also expected to conduct periodic on-site observation of work during construction to track adherence to plans.

Architects sometimes are asked to represent clients in obtaining bids and awarding construction contracts. and formulate layout of projects. And finally, they sometimes have to ready operating and maintenance manuals, studies, and reports.

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

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Vancouver include:

  • Civil Engineer. Perform engineering duties in planning, designing, and overseeing construction and maintenance of building structures, and facilities, such as roads, railroads, airports, bridges, harbors, channels, dams, irrigation projects, pipelines, power plants, water and sewage systems, and waste disposal units. Includes architectural, structural, and geo-technical engineers.
  • 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.
  • 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.


Portland State University - Portland, OR

Portland State University, 724 SW Harrison, Portland, OR 97201. Portland State University is a large university located in Portland, Oregon. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 25,959 students and an admission rate of 80%. Portland State University has a bachelor's degree program in Architecture which graduated thirty-eight students in 2008.


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 Lighting Efficiency Professional: AEE's Certified Lighting Efficiency Professional (CLEP) program is designed to provide recognition for professionals who have distinguished themselves as leaders in the field of lighting efficiency.

For more information, see the Association of Energy Engineers website.

Certified Lighting Management Consultant: The lighting industry prides itself on distinguishing those persons who have accomplished this professional and personal achievement.

For more information, see the International Association of Lighting Management Companies website.



Licensing agency: Department of Licensing
Address: Board of Registration for Architects, 405 Black Lake Blvd., Bldg. #2, PO Box 9045, Olympia, WA 98507-9045

Phone: (360) 753-1153
Website: Department of Licensing Board of Registration for Architects

LOCATION INFORMATION: Vancouver, Washington

Vancouver, Washington
Vancouver, Washington photo by Matthiasb

Vancouver is located in Clark County, Washington. It has a population of over 163,186, which has grown by 13.7% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Vancouver, 98, is near the national average. New single-family homes in Vancouver are priced at $95,700 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, two hundred eighty new homes were built in Vancouver, down from four hundred twenty the previous year.

The three most popular industries for women in Vancouver are health care, educational services, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is construction, computer and electronic products, and accommodation and food services. The average travel time to work is about 23 minutes. More than 21.7% of Vancouver residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 7.4%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Vancouver is 7.8%, which is less than Washington's average of 8.7%.

The percentage of Vancouver residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 27.9%, is less than both the national and state average. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the LDS (Mormon) Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

Vancouver is home to the Vancouver Square and the Vancouver Plaza as well as Leverich Park and Wintler Park. Shopping malls in the area include Arbours Shopping Center, Millport Shopping Center and Vancouver Village Shopping Center. Visitors to Vancouver can choose from Comfort Suites Vancouver, Homewood Suites Portland-Vancouver and Best Western Hotel and Suites Vacouver Mall Dr for temporary stays in the area.