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Top 10 jobs for architecture majors and who's hiring

Looking for a career in architecture? Explore our list of the top 10 architecture jobs and find out which companies are actively seeking new talent.

If you’re a current architecture major or recent graduate trying to decide what job path to pursue, listen up! This article is a guide to some of the best entry-level jobs in architecture.

We’ll tell you about architecture roles in urban planning, sustainability, and building information modeling, and we’ll give you a rundown of what abilities and qualifications you’ll need to land each job.

Scroll down to see which companies are looking to hire right now.

Should you pursue a career in architecture?

An ideal candidate for architecture needs technical skills, teamwork skills, and creativity. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) expects a 3% growth in jobs in the industry from 2021 to 2031. However, they also expect over 9,000 job openings to free up each year due to things like retirement, so there are plenty of chances to get your foot in the door.

The industry requires intense focus. Most weekdays will be spent in your studio planning and hand drawing design sketches or building 3D models on the computer using computer-aided design (CAD) software.

You’ll spend a lot of time discussing designs with clients, contractors, and other stakeholders. Occasionally, you’ll visit construction sites to survey building projects or draft initial plans. You’ll also likely need an in-depth understanding of federal and local building codes and regulations.

Best degrees to land architecture jobs

A great career as a licensed architect starts with the right degree plan. Here are a few programs that can help you land your dream job:

  • Architectural design. Learn everything you need to know about designing buildings and structures so you can land jobs like an architectural designer or project architect.
  • Architectural engineering. Focus on the technical engineering principles related to architecture and learn how to get jobs like building systems engineer or structural engineer.
  • Architectural technology. Take a deep dive into the technology that architects use daily and find out how to work jobs like an architectural technologist or a building information modeling (BIM) coordinator.
  • Interior architecture. Learn how to design inside spaces and snag a career as a space planner or an interior designer.
  • Landscape architecture. Find out how to work on outdoor projects, like parks and plazas, and learn how to become a landscape designer or a park and recreation director.
  • Urban planning. Understand how to design structures for specific big cities, like New York or Hong Kong, and other urban areas. Learn what it takes to work jobs like city planners or transportation planners.

Industries where you can build an architectural career

Here are a few industries that work with architecture firms:

  • Health care. Help build facilities, like hospitals, and functional indoor and outdoor spaces for patients and caregivers. In this industry, you’ll find careers like health care project managers and health care facility planners.
  • Real estate or residential. Collaborate with contractors to construct homes, apartments, or offices for clients and create comfortable indoor and outdoor spaces. Jobs in this industry can include residential architects and interior designers.
  • Retail. Design studio and commercial spaces, like stores and eateries. Find jobs like store designers and retail architects in the retail industry.
  • Industrial or urban. Create designs for projects, like airports and bridges for governments and communities, and become an urban planner or industrial designer.
  • Education. Outline building plans for schools, colleges, and other learning structures or teach architecture. Find a career as a school architect or professor of architecture.

Scroll down to see a bigger list of companies hiring architects from Handshake.

Top 10 entry-level jobs in architecture

When it comes to architecture, there are many entry-level jobs to choose from. Here’s an explanation of some of the best ones.

1. Architectural designer

Entry-level architectural designers collaborate with engineers, construction teams, and design firms to build structures and produce technical drawings and construction documents.

Median salary: $56,512 a year


  • Bachelor’s degree or master’s degree in architecture or a related field
  • Some states require licenses or certifications


  • Visualization skills
  • Ability to use CAD tools and other 2D and 3D modeling software
  • Attention to detail
  • Strong communication and interpersonal skills
  • Time management
  • Adaptability
  • Understanding of construction processes and regulations

2. Architectural drafter

Entry-level architectural drafters help engineers and other architects make thorough sketch-ups and technical drawings representing their building designs.

Median salary: $60,290 a year


  • Certification or associate degree in drafting or a related field


  • Ability to use modeling design tools, like CAD
  • Attention to detail
  • Strong analysis skills
  • Communication and interpersonal skills
  • Strong organizational and time management skills

3. Junior architect

Junior architects help more experienced architects conduct research and draft proposals. Sometimes, they may take on minor projects alone.

Median salary: $56,918 a year


  • Bachelor’s or master’s degree in architecture or a related field
  • Understanding of building regulations
  • Some knowledge of budgeting and other project management concepts


  • Strong visualization skills
  • Ability to use 3D modeling design tools
  • Teamwork and communication skills
  • Attention to detail
  • Time management and organization skills
  • Listening skills

4. Architectural project manager

Architectural project managers direct the process of designing and building structures. Entry-level project managers work under senior project managers until they learn the ropes.

Median salary: $80,952 a year


  • Bachelor’s or master’s degree in architecture or a related field
  • Expert understanding of construction administration


  • Strong leadership skills
  • Clear communication
  • Ability to use project management software
  • Ability to manage project budgets and finances
  • Collaboration and communication skills
  • Strong attention to detail
  • Creative problem-solving skills
  • Ability to make smart, quick decisions

5. Building information modeling (BIM) coordinator

BIM coordinators use 3D modeling software to build computerized plans and representations of architectural structures. They also plan what materials and design systems a project designer will use.

Median salary: $64,281 a year


  • Associate or bachelor’s degree in architecture, construction management, engineering, or a related field
  • Technical knowledge of construction building specifications


  • Great communication skills
  • Attention to detail
  • Ability to use BIM software tools, like Autodesk Revit
  • Creative problem-solving skills
  • Organizational skills
  • Time management
  • Adaptability to new technology

6. Urban planner

Urban planners consider economic, communal, and environmental factors to help create sustainable development plans for communities. They work in industries like transportation, housing, and zoning.

Median salary: $81,310 a year


  • Bachelor’s or master’s degree in urban planning, geography, architecture, or a related field
  • Understanding of federal, state, and local zoning and environmental legal concerns.


  • Analysis skills
  • Ability to use geographic information systems (GIS)
  • Strong collaboration skills
  • Attention to detail
  • Time management

7. Construction project coordinator

Construction project coordinators make sure projects meet quality standards, deadlines, and budgets. They coordinate projects and keep communication lines open with teams and project leads.

Median salary: $55,605 a year


  • Associate or bachelor’s degree in construction management or a related field
  • Some positions may require a Certified Construction Manager (CCM) or other certifications
  • Knowledge of building codes and regulations


  • Interpersonal and listening skills
  • Strong attention to detail
  • Comfortability working under pressure
  • Ability to use project management tools, like JobProgress

8. Building code specialist

Building code specialists maintain safety standards and zoning laws. They conduct inspections and approve building designs. Code specialists can work in the public or private sector.

Median salary: $61,640 a year


  • High school diploma or equivalent
  • Many employers require code specialists to have certifications like a Certified Building Inspector (CBI)
  • Some hirers require an associate or bachelor’s degree in architecture, engineering, or a related field


  • Expert understanding of building codes and regulations
  • Great interpersonal skills
  • Analysis skills
  • Basic computer skills
  • Attention to detail

9. Sustainability coordinator

Sustainability coordinators make sure construction projects meet environmental standards. Their goal is to promote environmentally friendly building methods.

Median salary: $55,715 a year


  • Bachelor’s degree in architecture, sustainability, or a related field
  • Understanding of environmental building standards


  • Strong communication and teamwork skills
  • Ability to promote environmental building practices
  • Analytical skills
  • Ability to use sustainable design tools, like LEED

10. Design assistant

Architectural design assistants support the initiatives of more experienced design workers. They help architects and interior designers create blueprints, build presentations, and make plans with clients.

Median salary: $66,482 a year


  • Some employers require a bachelor’s degree in architecture, interior design, or a related field


  • Ability to use design tools like AutoCAD
  • Strong communication and listening skills
  • Attention to detail
  • Time management
  • Critical thinking skills

Who’s hiring in architecture on Handshake?

Jump-start your career in architecture with Handshake

Now, it’s time to take the next step! Let Handshake help get you started down the path to your dream job in architecture. No matter how many years of experience you have, we provide job alerts for great part-time and full-time job posts and introduce you to companies that need your skills to fill architect jobs.


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