GRE Argument Essay 133

The following appeared in a memo to the human resources manager at Baobob Inc., a large architectural firm.

“Several well-known, retired architects were interviewed in Architecture Today about changes in the field. Only one had earned a college degree in architecture. All others had come into the field at an early age by serving apprenticeships that required them to work under the direct supervision of an experienced architect. Several of the colleges that we recruit from report that many promising architecture students leave school early in their undergraduate career. Therefore, because finding talented architecture graduates is becoming more difficult, Baobob Inc. should start an aggressive apprenticeship program and hire students who express an interest in architecture directly out of high school rather than wait for them to get out of college.”

In the argument presented in the memo, it is suggested that Baobob Inc. should hire students who are interested in architecture without waiting for them to complete their qualification in college. This suggestion is based on the interview of several retired architects out of which most had not attended colleges. Moreover, colleges also report that many promising architecture students leave their studies before completing their degree. However, the arguer seems to jump to conclusions without giving a thought to the findings. There can be other interpretations of this argument as are discussed below, which can prove contrary to the suggestion made in it.

Firstly, the interview was conducted on retired architects out of whom only one had earned a college degree. However, there is no proof that these architects represent all the well-known and progressive architects. It is not known exactly how many architects were interviewed by Architecture Today. If, out of the number of architects interviewed, only one had got a college degree, it does not depict that most of them were high school dropouts. This is because we do not know if the number of architects interviewed were significantly more, or just about a bunch of them were actually interviewed. Moreover, it is possible that there are other architects present who were not interviewed but have done extremely well in their field and also possess college degrees. The architects interviewed, therefore, may or may not represent all the architects who have been successful.

Since the interview was conducted on retired architects, it can be understood that they had gone to high school long back. Since then, there must have been many changes and introductions in the architectural studies. There could be very few colleges offering courses in architecture in the past. Hence, many students would have preferred to work under an expert architect in order to learn the tricks of the trade. However, today there are many colleges offering courses in architecture. While in the past students could have been deprived of the opportunity of joining an architectural college, it is not the case today. With a number of colleges mushrooming everywhere, there is ample opportunity provided to aspiring architects to join one of them and get a professional degree. The argument ignores the difference in the times as well as opportunities available and simply concludes that since most of the successful architects had not got a college degree, it is best to hire students interested in architecture.

Further, in the argument it is mentioned that many colleges report that many promising students leave architectural studies before completing their degree. This report may be given by only selected colleges. It is possible that many other colleges do not have students dropping out of their courses, but the report from these colleges was not taken. Moreover, it is possible that even if the students were capable and promising they were not interested in pursing a career in architecture. Hence, if they have left school in their undergraduate class it does not mean that they have done so to work under an expert of the same field.

The arguer seems to underestimate the value of professional qualification in saying that Baobob Inc should hire students interested in architecture directly rather than wait for them to complete their courses. A course in architecture gives the students enough knowledge that they would require in their career. It sets the basis of their career and gives them confidence to work. While experience is importance, it is important to have an understanding of the work, which is possible only if a student earns a proper degree for the same.

The argument surely ignores these possibilities and is based on meager evidence. It dos not provide explanations for many of the points mentioned above and thus the suggestion made in it can be discarded as inappropriate.