Are you thinking that if you go to architecture school you might not fit in? While the perception of architecture culture is that it requires being a certain "type," the reality is that its participants have become increasingly diverse in gender, ethnicity, and socio-economic background. It's not fully balanced yet, but the numbers continue to get better. Here are the most recent facts:
GENDER: 41% of architecture students and 43% of graduates are female. The most recent NAAB accreditation study reveals that 26% of faculty are female, although this can vary widely by school. The Beverly Willis Architecture Foundation lists 39 women as chairs, directors, or deans of architecture programs since the mid-1990s in a field of around 230 schools. The American Institute of Architects, which has about 79,000 members in a field of about 170,000 professionals, reports that within their membership, 15% of licensed architects and 30% of non-licensed associate members are women.
The clear trend in gender statistics is that percentages dwindle as women move up in the profession — from about 40% of architecture students, to fewer interns, licensed architects, and partners in firms, to just 13% of corporate leaders. Why? Various studies suggest various answers: there's a "glass ceiling" created by men at the top tending to hire people like them; the situation's generational and, as current students progress, women will rise in greater numbers; or it's the result of choices women make to spend more time with family responsibilities, which discourages their rise. There's no clear answer here, but the numbers are better than in 1975 when only 1% of registered architects were women.
CULTURAL BACKGROUND: Here are percentages in architecture by ethnicity and race, in comparison to the total US population (from the 2010 US census and NAAB accreditation study) :
|Ethnicity / Race||Student Enrollment||Degrees Awarded||
|Licensed AIA Members||General US Population|
|American / Hawaiian / Alaskan Native||1||1.1||.4||<1||1.1|
|Black / African American||5||4||3||1||14.6|
|Hispanic / Latino||14||9||7||3||12|
|Two or More Races||1||.7||.4||1||2.3|
These numbers have been improving as well, and many architecture schools consider it a priority to increase the diversity in their student and faculty bodies. While there's certainly room for further improvement, beyond the data one fact is undeniable: women and men from every kind of background have been and can be great architects.