[ENG] A student who enters college as a prospective English or biology major has a pretty good idea of what he or she’s getting into: chances are, that student has already taken Advanced Placement classes in his or her chosen subject. Not so for the would-be architect. Few high schools teach technical drawing; none prepares students to slog through all-nighters in the studio, or to endure withering crits. How can a 17-year-old be confident that he or she will actually like architecture school and succeed in it?
That teenager would find out at an architecture summer camp. These camps (programs, really) allow high-schoolers—and, increasingly, college students and adult professionals—to experience architectural education firsthand for a few weeks in the summer, an appetizer they can try before the main course of a B.Arch. or an M.Arch. degree. Today there are 66 such programs around the country, most hosted by colleges and universities, a few by nonprofits or arts institutions, according to Lee W. Waldrep, assistant director of the School of Architecture at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. Their popularity has surged: “In the ’80s, there were maybe 20 or 30,” Waldrep notes. This is partly because the schools themselves reap great benefits from the programs—extra revenue, a means of employing graduate students, and, perhaps, a small boost to recruitment.
We sent three reporters to three different campuses, where each of them spent a day learning the design-camp ropes. Read on to see what they found.
Read more at architect magazine