Hi! I am a Junior studying in a private boarding school in New York. I plan to apply to Cornell, Rice, and USC’s architecture program. Could anyone explain the pro and cons for each school, and provide an accepted portfolio example? Thank you so much!
@JacobKing I think the reason that it’s hard to find examples of portfolios on the internet is that the schools don’t want you to be influenced by other students’ work. The objective of the portfolio is to demonstrate your creativity, design and presentation skills and facility with various media, especially freehand drawing.
Most BArch programs, including the 3 you have targeted, provide detailed information on what they’d like to see included in portfolio submissions. Read the instructions carefully then spend some time selecting your best work, in any media.
Summer architecture career programs can help you build a body of work, though architecture focused work is not a requirement.
Because the fall out rate in BArch programs is high, most schools are generous with their time in answering applicants’ questions. Many hold BArch information sessions in the fall which are good opportunities to get a feel for the type of work that is being produced and to ask questions about admission standards.
BArch curriculums are fairly standard from school to school. The main points of differentiation are location (Ithaca, Los Angeles & Houston couldn’t be more different from each other), study abroad opportunities, thesis and summer term requirements. Rice’s Preceptor program is noteworthy.
All 3 have strong global reputations, but it’s still important to consider regional hiring practices for summer internships and networking opportunities with visiting professors and critics.
You’re probably aware that these 3 BArch programs are highly selective. As in any college application list, make sure you have a balance of reach/match/safety.