Professional Experience


Jump start your career & apply classroom learning to practice...

UDM's School of Architecture was one of the first three in the nation, and the only program in Michigan to include two semesters of real world office experience through a cooperative educational experience. As a paid employee of your co-op firm, you'll work on real projects under the guidance of a licensed architect.

UDM's unique Cooperative Education sequence gives students direct experience in the real world of architecture through required work experiences at architectural offices of the student's choosing, giving you a jump start on your professional career. Co-op students are paid competitive wages according to their skills and experience. They may co-op anywhere in the world.

The co-op experience begins with the course ARCH 3000, Professional Experience Preparation. The program in architecture integrates two required terms of on-the-job educational experience, which occur during the third term of the third year (ARCH 3910) and the second term of the fourth year (ARCH 3920). Further optional co-op terms are also possible. This sequence provides students with the opportunity to alternate their intellectual development in professional offices with academic studies. Co-op is valuable in developing practical skills prior to graduation and in being exposed to the profession of architecture and the realities of architectural practice. Each co-op term, students are required to keep a journal and write a report on their work experience, and submit representative samples of the work they produced. A series of questions are also given to the students to stimulate reflection on the profession and their position within it. Students are evaluated by both the employer and the cooperative education coordinator. Master of Architecture students are required to take the following: ARCH 3000, Professional Experience Preparation, ARCH 3910, Professional Experience I, and ARCH 3920, Professional Experience II. Only ARCH 3000 and ARCH 3910 are required for those students receiving the non professional Bachelor of Science in Architecture degree.