Career StagesNational Associates Committee
The National Associates Committee asked - What do you think “unlicensed architects” should be called. What is in the name or titling for you? What does it get you, where does it get you, or how does it make you feel? Those of us on the licensure track are working really hard to earn the title of “architect” and those of us who are architects treasure the right to the title. So, what can we non-licensed individuals call themselves that reflects the rigor of architectural education and training they have experienced?
Many readers responded and the results were very interesting. Below are two of the myriad responses to the questions above.
Posted by Anonymous
In my opinion an intern is someone who is still in school and working a part-time or summer job with an architectural firm or the likes there of. An intern gets paid very little in comparison and sometimes isn't paid at all.
I am considered an intern architect with a Masters degree in Architecture, 3 years of experience, and am nearing completion of my IDP and will soon begin my licensing exams.
I am one of the many who do not like the nomenclature being same for completely different levels of competence. I would prefer to be called a Graduate Architect, an Apprentice Architect or an Architect in Training (AIT). I believe that there is a need to reevaluate the nomenclature for the entire procession and to be universal throughout our country and to enforce penalties to those who do not follow the proper titling.
So until then, I am an Intern Architect.
Chris Ward responded:
20 years ago I was working at a firm in Los Angeles, and one of the Partners met with me privately to discuss a project. As an aside, he said to me by the way, you are an architect, (I was not yet licensed), don't get hung up with all this legal nonsense, of what you are called or labelled, what you are doing defines you. That comment has stuck with me for many years and helped me realize that the term is relative in the world outside of our profession, and has more than legal meaning inside of it. Simply put, if engaged in the practice you are an architect. Save the legal qualification for contracts, discussions with other professionals about where one stands with licensure and when representing yourself to a client. I will always remember that day I was officially entitled by another architect to bear the moniker.
If you have not already, be sure to the read the full article in AIArchitect
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