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Pros & Cons: ARCH SCHOOLS: CMU -PRATT-RISD-SYRACUSE-UVA??

awaitingoffersawaitingoffers 50 replies2 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 52 Junior Member
Please give us your two cents!! Our son is leaning towards CMU. He is artsy and more design-oriented. A few quick details and observations but please tell us your thoughts....
He really liked the school and the fact they have lots going on campus including sports and a strong theater program which is a hobby of his. He liked Pratt a lot also and rec'd merit scholarship and he loves NYC but is wondering if it is too limited and known mostly as an ART School. RISD is for sure an ART SCHOOL and while it has a good ARCH rep he's thinking it may be too artsy and we heard its not as easy to take classes at BROWN as some have suggested due to different semesters???
Syracuse has a great rep but he's not a partier in any way shape or form so leaning against Syracuse. (which I am very happy about)
UVA doesn't have the Barch but may be the most affordable for us as we are moving to VA in a few months and can declare residency in a year. Although than he would need the 4+2 adding an extra year of tuition. So any words of advice from students and parents on why they love their ARCH school, the program, professors, is there a decent work/life balance? Also in terms of name recognition, and internships? ANything would help now. We are waiting on Financial aid info from CMU. (and he applied to Cooper U also and is still waiting to hear however has discounted them due to the NO campus, no sports and the fact that when we visited a few weeks ago students basically told us their whole college life at CU revolves around the studio.) THANK YOU!!! (i tried to post this yesterday but it seems to have disappeared and I am not sure why?)
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Replies to: Pros & Cons: ARCH SCHOOLS: CMU -PRATT-RISD-SYRACUSE-UVA??

  • momrathmomrath 5937 replies39 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 5,976 Senior Member
    @awaitingoffers Congratulations to your son on some excellent choices! My son did a BA+MArch, not a BArch. Although he didn't attend any of the schools on your son's list, UVA was a very close second for him. BS programs aren't rated by DI, but UVA's school of architecture is highly regarded in the industry. A BS at UVA would offer a solid foundation for an MArch at UVA or any other school of architecture, as well as a typical undergraduate college experience.

    I wouldn't discount Syracuse, even if the parent university doesn't seem like a good fit. The architecture program is very strong in both design and structures, and highly regarded by firms across the US cities as well as globally.

    The BArch programs at both Pratt and RISD are consistently rated in the top 10 by DI. Since BArch curriculums are standardized by the NAAB, the material covered would be the same as at any BArch program with requisite courses in design, structures and technology.

    At art schools the emphasis and culture would be different from a "full service" university, At an art school all of your son's classmates would be studying something related to art or design. At the others, his friends would be majoring in a wide range of disciplines.

    I have heard the same thing about the difficulty of cross registration between RISD and Brown, but it's certainly not impossible. Pratt and RISD students certainly do well in internship and job placement, especially at firms that value the extra-mile design focus.

    I don't know much about CMU, but my understanding is that the school of architecture is less integrated with the university as a whole than it is at UVA or Syracure. CMU was one of the forerunners in the integration of design and technology, long before it became standard at all architecture schools. This is demonstrated in CMU's several excellent interdisciplinary programs. If your son is equally attracted to both the design and tech sides of architecture, then CMU would be a good choice.

    Entry level architecture programs are notoriously underpaid in relation to the training involved, so cost is always a factor. Although the BArch is all that is needed to begin the licensing process (and in some states you don't even need that), recently architects at high profile firms have tended to adding MArchs on top of their BArchs, often from different schools.

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  • awaitingoffersawaitingoffers 50 replies2 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 52 Junior Member
    Thank you Momrath! Great info! Appreciate your insight!
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