Bottom line, I am in Europe to find a job. Traveling through a variety of countries will allow me to experience the culture and sites while I plan to visit the offices of potential employers. I am hoping to get some face-time with a human resources person or even an intern just so I can find out more about each firm, such as the software they use, the technology they utilize, and some info about licensing in their region. Before I graduated from the University of Michigan with my master's degree in 2012, I was hoping to have successfully interviewed for a job at an architecture firm that suited my skills, knowledge, and professional goals. During my time in college, I had the opportunity to travel and Europe really appealed to me not just for working but also the lifestyle. Hopefully during this round of traveling I will be able to find the perfect firm in the perfect location.
I am temporarily residing in Crawley, England and this is a great location for submitting applications to architecture firms in London. I feel that my chances for employment are greater after making the move to the United Kingdom, where I have a local address and telephone number, instead of submitting speculative applications all the way from Tampa, Florida. The locations of prospective employers include firms from Helsinki, Finland to Vienna, Austria. Below is a diagram of the prospective employers.
An enormous benefit of northern Europe is the ease - referring to time and expenses - of traveling to so many different nearby countries. If you haven't figured it out yet, I love to travel and if I were to live in this region I would be able to satisfy my travel cravings. The perfect case scenario would be working for a firm in one of the listed cities on the diagram, then I would engage in new experiences at my place of residence, while possibly traveling for assigned projects and be able to travel during my leisure time. If a prospective employer happens to ask, "Are you willing to travel?".... yes, please!
As part of the job search I had to put a few things together since arriving to the United Kingdom. One item was taking my work sample sheets that are in letter format and turning them into A4 format. The original work samples are HERE, and the new set is HERE. It took a good amount of time to overhaul that set into the new format, but I'm stopping at no expense to make sure I have exhausted all efforts for my job hunt. Some firms require a hard copy submission - a great way to cull the amount of application submissions - and I will gladly oblige their request for hard copies and even hand deliver it. Hey, that's a justified reason to finally make my way into London, but I'm still waiting for those prints to arrive and I will need to do a little arts and crafts to bind it together before I can hop on that train to London. Hopefully this happens in the upcoming week.
Another item I had worked on was a business card. In the occasions that I am out at an event, seminar, lecture, etc. where there are other professionals, the best way they will remember me is if I hand them a business card. I also wanted a card that stands out, and I found a few companies that do plastic cards, and I also found a company in the US that does transparent plastic, check them out here MorningPrint.com. I wish I could have seen a preview, but according to them they only print out in mass quantities, so no sample and I just have to hope that the business card turns out like I hope. All color prints as normal, everything in white is transparent and the card has rounded edges.
In regards to my position, "Architectural Assistant" seems to be the common name used for somebody of my experience - basically, an architect in training. In the UK, they are referred to as Architectural Assistants Part II, in Scandinavia it's Architectural Assistant, in the US it could be Junior or Graduate Architect. So in the interest of not printing out different cards, with different titles, for different regions, Architectural Assistant seems to suffice until determined otherwise.