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Nicolet College - Nicolet’s Architectural Technology degree gives students green building design, construction skills


Nicolet's Architectural Technology degree
gives students green building design, construction skills


Nov. 9, 2011

Classes start in January at Nicolet College for the new Architectural Technology program designed to give students traditional building trades skills along with significant knowledge about how to incorporate green building practices and materials into residential home design and construction.

"Increasingly people who are building new homes or remodeling want to incorporate energy-saving and other environmentally-sustainable features in their homes," said Nicolet College President Elizabeth Burmaster. "Graduates from the Architectural Technology program will provide local construction contractors with a greater ability to provide these services which, in turn, will help these businesses be successful."

The two-year associate degree is comprised of 23 classes that include traditional construction courses as well as green-oriented offerings such as Building Green Residential, Alternative Energy Overview, and Principles of Sustainability.

"Green construction is a clear trend in the industry," said Jeff Labs, Architectural Technology and Building Trades instructor at Nicolet. "Students who graduate from the program will have multiple skills with a new technology. This will give them a definite advantage in landing that first job after college and advancing in the field as they get more experience."

Before starting the program, Nicolet surveyed Northwoods building contractors to determine the level of demand for employees with green design and construction skills. The majority of those responding said they agreed or strongly agreed that local employers need employees with the skills taught in the Architectural Technology program and that graduates would find regional employment.

Occupations for graduates include Residential Designer, Architectural Technician, Draftsperson, Project Manager, Estimator, and Building Inspector. Wage data from the state of Wisconsin shows that in 2010 in northern Wisconsin the median pay for an Architectural Drafter was $21.15 an hour; Cost Estimator $20.49 an hour, and Construction Manager $33.61 an hour.

For more information about the Architectural Technology program, contact the Nicolet College Welcome Center at (715) 365-4493, 1-800-544-3039, ext. 4493, TDD (715) 365-4558 or 711 relay.