Today I went to a “program conference” for the Architectural Technology program offered by Kirkwood Community College. It was very informative. The A.T. program is a two-year deal (includes one summer and an internship) and when I finish I could work as a drafter or a residential designer. This appeals to the artist in me. I love to draw, and have attempted drafting on a very rudimentary basis. I did the preliminary drawings for our church’s bathroom and nursery remodels – a certified architect had to do the final drawings to be compliant with State regulations, but he was able to understand what we wanted from my drawings. I’ve also done drawings for our house. We’d like to add a porch eventually, so I did drawings of several different porches so we could figure out what we’d want. I also designed my brother’s deck, but I can’t remember if I made drawings of it or not. (Do you remember, Bob?)
So anyway. My options kinda fall out like this:
1) Pet grooming: a one-year course of study (if I can get in, there’s a waiting list) that would allow me to either work part-time for an established groomer or start my own grooming business. Starting my own business would mean I could be home with my girls, and I can set my own schedule, but we’d have to find a place to move in the country so I would have room for a shop and a kennel. I’d have to comply with strict State regulations as to what kind of products (shampoo, flea dip, etc) I could sell retail, and I’d have to deal with the messes created by critters.
2) Architectural drafting: a two-year course of study that would allow me to work part-time (probably for the firm I’d intern with). After I had some experience I could work from home as a freelance residential designer, but I’d have to stay current with the law and also with the newest drafting software. Or I could work for a firm full-time once the girls are old enough to stay home alone. I could work for any of several types of companies doing HVAC, woodworking, kitchen or home remodel designs. I could even work for Rockwell-Collins as an electrical drafter, provided they hire part-time people. The A.T. program also has some hands-on construction training, and that appeals to me because I like to work with my hands. I’d love to learn how to do construction framing. And since I’m the Building Ministry co-chair (with Carl) at our church, any knowledge I gain about structural repair and remodeling would make life that much easier.
So now what? I need to spend time discussing this with Carl, and I have a guidance counselor appointment set for Monday. Plus I’ve gotten some wonderful feedback on my last posting, but any other comments anyone cares to make would be appreciated. Your prayers on my behalf would also be greatly appreciated, because if I do go back to school I need to figure out how to pay for it.
And then there’s that “old geezer in class with a bunch of kids” thing…