Architecture not acessible for low income students


Architects of our own future

A RECENT report by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has revealed that our industry is in danger of becoming a profession only accessible to the wealthiest of students.

With increasing student fees and the poor economic climate, students from lower income backgrounds are becoming increasingly deterred.

The report, which looked into the earnings of students in the year 2011/2012, aimed to establish an understanding of the remuneration given for contribution to the profession during training years to help inform future employment guidance for the industry.

Architecture students require a working placement to progress with their education. I know a number of students have faced serious difficulty when looking for placements, leading to a proportion having no option but to work for free. A large percentage of students also currently head south to find a position, this will lead to a gap in skilled professionals in our region once the recession is over.

Despite the perception given by the media, architecture is generally not a well-paid profession and, in the state of the current economic climate, it is not surprising that student earnings are low. However, out of all 93% of placements that happened in the architectural industry, only 11% were unpaid.

Student placements, although training positions, are proper jobs and, as an industry, we have no excuse for not paying them correctly and at least to minimum wage. By not doing so, the industry falls foul of its legal obligations and its moral duties.

 Read the full article here

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