Architecture and Construction Careers

Architecture and Construction The group of careers encompassing construction and architecture is a rapidly advancing field of study. Professionals in the architecture and construction fields develop and plan structural components, infrastructure, transportation systems. Additionally to design work, this field of study encompasses repairs and restorations of existing structures, be they buildings, highways, bridges, or other man made objects.

Architecture and construction careers include a full spectrum of jobs in design, engineering, physical labor, planning, management, and drafting. Jobs in design include architects, structural engineers, and infrastructure design planners. Jobs in structural building and repair include mechanical and infrastructure engineers, draftsmen, and construction laborers.

Architects, Except Landscape and Naval

Plan and design structures, such as private residences, office buildings, theaters, factories, and other structural property.
Most have a master's degree

Brickmasons and Blockmasons

Lay and bind building materials, such as brick, structural tile, concrete block, cinder block, glass block, and terra-cotta block, with mortar and other substances to construct or repair walls, partitions, arches,...
Most have less than a high school diploma

Carpenters

Construct, erect, install, or repair structures and fixtures made of wood, such as concrete forms; building frameworks, including partitions, joists, studding, and rafters; and wood stairways, window and door frames,...

Carpet Installers

Lay and install carpet from rolls or blocks on floors. Install padding and trim flooring materials.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Cement Masons and Concrete Finishers

Smooth and finish surfaces of poured concrete, such as floors, walks, sidewalks, roads, or curbs using a variety of hand and power tools. Align forms for sidewalks, curbs, or gutters; patch voids; and use saws to cut...
Most have less than a high school diploma

Civil Engineering Technicians

Apply theory and principles of civil engineering in planning, designing, and overseeing construction and maintenance of structures and facilities under the direction of engineering staff or physical scientists.
Most have a vocational certificate

Civil Engineers

Perform engineering duties in planning, designing, and overseeing construction and maintenance of building structures, and facilities, such as roads, railroads, airports, bridges, harbors, channels, dams, irrigation...
Most have a bachelor's degree

Construction and Building Inspectors

Inspect structures using engineering skills to determine structural soundness and compliance with specifications, building codes, and other regulations. Inspections may be general in nature or may be limited to a...
Most have a bachelor's degree

Construction Carpenters

Construct, erect, install, and repair structures and fixtures of wood, plywood, and wallboard, using carpenter's hand tools and power tools.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Construction Laborers

Perform tasks involving physical labor at construction sites. May operate hand and power tools of all types: air hammers, earth tampers, cement mixers, small mechanical hoists, surveying and measuring equipment, and a...
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Construction Managers

Plan, direct, or coordinate, usually through subordinate supervisory personnel, activities concerned with the construction and maintenance of structures, facilities, and systems. Participate in the conceptual...
Most have a bachelor's degree

Control and Valve Installers and Repairers, Except Mechanical Door

Install, repair, and maintain mechanical regulating and controlling devices, such as electric meters, gas regulators, thermostats, safety and flow valves, and other mechanical governors.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Conveyor Operators and Tenders

Control or tend conveyors or conveyor systems that move materials or products to and from stockpiles, processing stations, departments, or vehicles. May control speed and routing of materials or products.
Most have some college

Cost Estimators

Prepare cost estimates for product manufacturing, construction projects, or services to aid management in bidding on or determining price of product or service. May specialize according to particular service performed...
Most have a bachelor's degree

Crane and Tower Operators

Operate mechanical boom and cable or tower and cable equipment to lift and move materials, machines, or products in many directions.
Most have a vocational certificate

Dredge Operators

Operate dredge to remove sand, gravel, or other materials in order to excavate and maintain navigable channels in waterways.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Drywall and Ceiling Tile Installers

Apply plasterboard or other wallboard to ceilings or interior walls of buildings. Apply or mount acoustical tiles or blocks, strips, or sheets of shock-absorbing materials to ceilings and walls of buildings to reduce or...
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Earth Drillers, Except Oil and Gas

Operate a variety of drills such as rotary, churn, and pneumatic to tap sub-surface water and salt deposits, to remove core samples during mineral exploration or soil testing, and to facilitate the use of explosives in...
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Electrical and Electronics Repairers, Powerhouse, Substation, and Relay

Inspect, test, repair, or maintain electrical equipment in generating stations, substations, and in-service relays.
Most have a vocational certificate

Electrical Power-Line Installers and Repairers

Install or repair cables or wires used in electrical power or distribution systems. May erect poles and light or heavy duty transmission towers.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Electricians

Install, maintain, and repair electrical wiring, equipment, and fixtures. Ensure that work is in accordance with relevant codes. May install or service street lights, intercom systems, or electrical control systems.
Most have a vocational certificate

Elevator Installers and Repairers

Assemble, install, repair, or maintain electric or hydraulic freight or passenger elevators, escalators, or dumbwaiters.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Excavating and Loading Machine and Dragline Operators

Operate or tend machinery equipped with scoops, shovels, or buckets, to excavate and load loose materials.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Fence Erectors

Erect and repair fences and fence gates, using hand and power tools.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

First-Line Supervisors of Construction Trades and Extraction Workers

Directly supervise and coordinate activities of construction or extraction workers.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Floor Layers, Except Carpet, Wood, and Hard Tiles

Apply blocks, strips, or sheets of shock-absorbing, sound-deadening, or decorative coverings to floors.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Floor Sanders and Finishers

Scrape and sand wooden floors to smooth surfaces using floor scraper and floor sanding machine, and apply coats of finish.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Geothermal Technicians

Perform technical activities at power plants or individual installations necessary for the generation of power from geothermal energy sources. Monitor and control operating activities at geothermal power generation...
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Glaziers

Install glass in windows, skylights, store fronts, and display cases, or on surfaces, such as building fronts, interior walls, ceilings, and tabletops.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Hazardous Materials Removal Workers

Identify, remove, pack, transport, or dispose of hazardous materials, including asbestos, lead-based paint, waste oil, fuel, transmission fluid, radioactive materials, or contaminated soil. Specialized training and...
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Heating and Air Conditioning Mechanics and Installers

Install, service, or repair heating and air conditioning systems in residences or commercial establishments.
Most have a vocational certificate

Heating, Air Conditioning, and Refrigeration Mechanics and Installers

Install or repair heating, central air conditioning, or refrigeration systems, including oil burners, hot-air furnaces, and heating stoves.

Helpers--Brickmasons, Blockmasons, Stonemasons, and Tile and Marble Setters

Help brickmasons, blockmasons, stonemasons, or tile and marble setters by performing duties requiring less skill. Duties include using, supplying or holding materials or tools, and cleaning work area and equipment.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Helpers--Carpenters

Help carpenters by performing duties requiring less skill. Duties include using, supplying or holding materials or tools, and cleaning work area and equipment.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Helpers--Electricians

Help electricians by performing duties requiring less skill. Duties include using, supplying or holding materials or tools, and cleaning work area and equipment.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Helpers--Installation, Maintenance, and Repair Workers

Help installation, maintenance, and repair workers in maintenance, parts replacement, and repair of vehicles, industrial machinery, and electrical and electronic equipment. Perform duties such as furnishing tools,...
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Helpers--Painters, Paperhangers, Plasterers, and Stucco Masons

Help painters, paperhangers, plasterers, or stucco masons by performing duties requiring less skill. Duties include using, supplying or holding materials or tools, and cleaning work area and equipment.
Most have less than a high school diploma

Helpers--Pipelayers, Plumbers, Pipefitters, and Steamfitters

Help plumbers, pipefitters, steamfitters, or pipelayers by performing duties requiring less skill. Duties include using, supplying or holding materials or tools, and cleaning work area and equipment.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Helpers--Roofers

Help roofers by performing duties requiring less skill. Duties include using, supplying or holding materials or tools, and cleaning work area and equipment.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Highway Maintenance Workers

Maintain highways, municipal and rural roads, airport runways, and rights-of-way. Duties include patching broken or eroded pavement, repairing guard rails, highway markers, and snow fences. May also mow or clear brush...
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Hoist and Winch Operators

Operate or tend hoists or winches to lift and pull loads using power-operated cable equipment.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Home Appliance Repairers

Repair, adjust, or install all types of electric or gas household appliances, such as refrigerators, washers, dryers, and ovens.
Most have an associate's or 2-year degree

Insulation Workers, Floor, Ceiling, and Wall

Line and cover structures with insulating materials. May work with batt, roll, or blown insulation materials.
Most have less than a high school diploma

Insulation Workers, Mechanical

Apply insulating materials to pipes or ductwork, or other mechanical systems in order to help control and maintain temperature.
Most have less than a high school diploma

Interior Designers

Plan, design, and furnish interiors of residential, commercial, or industrial buildings. Formulate design which is practical, aesthetic, and conducive to intended purposes, such as raising productivity, selling...
Most have a bachelor's degree

Landscape Architects

Plan and design land areas for projects such as parks and other recreational facilities, airports, highways, hospitals, schools, land subdivisions, and commercial, industrial, and residential sites.
Most have a bachelor's degree

Landscaping and Groundskeeping Workers

Landscape or maintain grounds of property using hand or power tools or equipment. Workers typically perform a variety of tasks, which may include any combination of the following: sod laying, mowing, trimming, planting,...
Most have less than a high school diploma

Manufactured Building and Mobile Home Installers

Move or install mobile homes or prefabricated buildings.
Most have less than a high school diploma

Mechanical Door Repairers

Install, service, or repair automatic door mechanisms and hydraulic doors. Includes garage door mechanics.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Mechanical Drafters

Prepare detailed working diagrams of machinery and mechanical devices, including dimensions, fastening methods, and other engineering information.
Most have an associate's or 2-year degree

Operating Engineers and Other Construction Equipment Operators

Operate one or several types of power construction equipment, such as motor graders, bulldozers, scrapers, compressors, pumps, derricks, shovels, tractors, or front-end loaders to excavate, move, and grade earth, erect...
Most have a vocational certificate

Painters, Construction and Maintenance

Paint walls, equipment, buildings, bridges, and other structural surfaces, using brushes, rollers, and spray guns. May remove old paint to prepare surface prior to painting. May mix colors or oils to obtain desired...
Most have less than a high school diploma

Paperhangers

Cover interior walls or ceilings of rooms with decorative wallpaper or fabric, or attach advertising posters on surfaces such as walls and billboards. May remove old materials or prepare surfaces to be papered.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Paving, Surfacing, and Tamping Equipment Operators

Operate equipment used for applying concrete, asphalt, or other materials to road beds, parking lots, or airport runways and taxiways, or equipment used for tamping gravel, dirt, or other materials. Includes concrete...
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Pile-Driver Operators

Operate pile drivers mounted on skids, barges, crawler treads, or locomotive cranes to drive pilings for retaining walls, bulkheads, and foundations of structures, such as buildings, bridges, and piers.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Pipe Fitters and Steamfitters

Lay out, assemble, install, or maintain pipe systems, pipe supports, or related hydraulic or pneumatic equipment for steam, hot water, heating, cooling, lubricating, sprinkling, or industrial production or processing...
Most have a vocational certificate

Pipelayers

Lay pipe for storm or sanitation sewers, drains, and water mains. Perform any combination of the following tasks: grade trenches or culverts, position pipe, or seal joints.
Most have less than a high school diploma

Plasterers and Stucco Masons

Apply interior or exterior plaster, cement, stucco, or similar materials. May also set ornamental plaster.
Most have less than a high school diploma

Plumbers

Assemble, install, or repair pipes, fittings, or fixtures of heating, water, or drainage systems, according to specifications or plumbing codes.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Plumbers, Pipefitters, and Steamfitters

Assemble, install, alter, and repair pipelines or pipe systems that carry water, steam, air, or other liquids or gases. May install heating and cooling equipment and mechanical control systems. Includes sprinklerfitters.

Refractory Materials Repairers, Except Brickmasons

Build or repair equipment such as furnaces, kilns, cupolas, boilers, converters, ladles, soaking pits and ovens, using refractory materials.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Refrigeration Mechanics and Installers

Install and repair industrial and commercial refrigerating systems.
Most have a vocational certificate

Reinforcing Iron and Rebar Workers

Position and secure steel bars or mesh in concrete forms in order to reinforce concrete. Use a variety of fasteners, rod-bending machines, blowtorches, and hand tools. Includes rod busters.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Riggers

Set up or repair rigging for construction projects, manufacturing plants, logging yards, ships and shipyards, or for the entertainment industry.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Roofers

Cover roofs of structures with shingles, slate, asphalt, aluminum, wood, or related materials. May spray roofs, sidings, and walls with material to bind, seal, insulate, or soundproof sections of structures.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Rough Carpenters

Build rough wooden structures, such as concrete forms, scaffolds, tunnel, bridge, or sewer supports, billboard signs, and temporary frame shelters, according to sketches, blueprints, or oral instructions.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Segmental Pavers

Lay out, cut, and place segmental paving units. Includes installers of bedding and restraining materials for the paving units.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Septic Tank Servicers and Sewer Pipe Cleaners

Clean and repair septic tanks, sewer lines, or drains. May patch walls and partitions of tank, replace damaged drain tile, or repair breaks in underground piping.
Most have less than a high school diploma

Sheet Metal Workers

Fabricate, assemble, install, and repair sheet metal products and equipment, such as ducts, control boxes, drainpipes, and furnace casings. Work may involve any of the following: setting up and operating fabricating...
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Solar Energy Installation Managers

Direct work crews installing residential or commercial solar photovoltaic or thermal systems.

Solar Thermal Installers and Technicians

Install or repair solar energy systems designed to collect, store, and circulate solar-heated water for residential, commercial or industrial use.

Stationary Engineers and Boiler Operators

Operate or maintain stationary engines, boilers, or other mechanical equipment to provide utilities for buildings or industrial processes. Operate equipment, such as steam engines, generators, motors, turbines, and...
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Stonemasons

Build stone structures, such as piers, walls, and abutments. Lay walks, curbstones, or special types of masonry for vats, tanks, and floors.
Most have less than a high school diploma

Structural Iron and Steel Workers

Raise, place, and unite iron or steel girders, columns, and other structural members to form completed structures or structural frameworks. May erect metal storage tanks and assemble prefabricated metal buildings.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Structural Metal Fabricators and Fitters

Fabricate, position, align, and fit parts of structural metal products.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Surveyors

Make exact measurements and determine property boundaries. Provide data relevant to the shape, contour, gravitation, location, elevation, or dimension of land or land features on or near the earth's surface for...
Most have a bachelor's degree

Tapers

Seal joints between plasterboard or other wallboard to prepare wall surface for painting or papering.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Terrazzo Workers and Finishers

Apply a mixture of cement, sand, pigment, or marble chips to floors, stairways, and cabinet fixtures to fashion durable and decorative surfaces.
Most have a high school diploma or GED

Tile and Marble Setters

Apply hard tile, marble, and wood tile to walls, floors, ceilings, and roof decks.
Most have less than a high school diploma

Weatherization Installers and Technicians

Perform a variety of activities to weatherize homes and make them more energy efficient. Duties include repairing windows, insulating ducts, and performing heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning (HVAC) work. May...
The recent recession took a toll on the architectural and construction fields. One of the primary results of the recession was a severe decrease in new housing starts. This caused a severe downturn in construction employment, including the resultant drop in business for architects. Additionally, government infrastructure projects suffered from lack of funding, although stimulus provided some government related projects funding. The field in general, however, should rebound, as it depends on the natural increase of population, housing, and infrastructure.

The field of construction and architecture is as varied as any profession. The required education for most design level professions includes advanced work in math, geometry, and physics, as well as specific courses in architecture and planning. In addition to the educational requirements needed for a career in architecture or advanced construction design and/or management, there are often required professional certifications and/or apprenticeships.
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