From sophisticated home and building construction to its indiscriminate cityscape, Los Angeles stands as a global benchmark in architectural engineering. It is in L.A. where one can marvel at original and innovative displays of design alongside the splendor of antiquity.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of jobs in the architectural employment sector is expected to balloon by 24 percent by the year 2020. If so, this will create a voluminous field of dreams for those that utilize their vision, smarts and business management skills to distinguish themselves.
“Architectural engineering is a good career to pursue in L.A. because this city is a world hub for trade with the Pacific Rim and the development of new technology,” said Jeffrey Daniels, program director of architecture and interior design at UCLA Extension. “L.A. has more opportunities for growth in construction than perhaps any other city in the U.S.”
Other industries currently depending on architectural engineers include real estate, software and commercial banking.
Daniels, a licensed architect with more than 30 years of experience in design activity, manages the business end of all courses, certificates and degrees offered by UCLA Extension in relation to architecture and interior design. Daniels, a Princeton University alumnus, received his master’s degree in architecture from Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
What does it take to be successful in architectural engineering?
“It’s very competitive because there are many excellent schools of engineering that are producing very smart and well-trained professionals. The more knowledge one has about cutting-edge technologies and the use of building information modeling systems, the more competitive one will be in the marketplace.”
“In the past, traditional building design entrusted two-dimensional drawings. Building information modeling extends these plans beyond 3-D, augmenting the three primary spatial dimensions of width, height and depth with the budgetary values of time and cost. It’s a process, now being explored by the construction industry and its sub-sectors, that involves management of digital representations.”
What do you see as the future of architectural engineering?
“I expect virtual renderings of structures to advance to commonplace practice in coming years. The architectural field has become more responsive to the needs of local communities and also more reliant on digital building information modeling technology to design and implement all types of construction projects.”
“I think the integration of building information modeling, 3-D printing and the whole field of robotics will transform the way buildings are built-in ways that will be truly remarkable.”
Sharon Raiford Bush is an award-winning journalist who covers topics of social interest in greater Los Angeles. Some news articles she has authored have been archived by the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC. Sharon also contributes to Examiner.com.