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The Office of Career Services
Library Building, Room 429 & 430
222-05 56th Avenue
Bayside, NY 11364
Phone: (718) 631-6297

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Occupation Info

Structural Drafter

Overview: Structural drafters draw detailed plans and specifications for buildings, bridges, airplane hangers, warehouses that use steel or wooden support systems. Their plans are followed in the construction of foundations, building frames, floors and roofs.
Duties: They work with construction and materials engineers to produce layouts, drawings, schematics and specifications for the construction of buildings and bridges.

Provide construction contractors with drawings and materials specifications needed for structure's foundations, frames, floors & roofs. Identify the quality needed for all materials.

Use computers to perform calculations and automatically create drawings and schematics. Review drawing with supervisors responsible for erecting the structures.

Visit construction sites to inspect the new structure during major stages of the work in progress. They verify that the structure is being built according to the specifications.

Degree(s): A.A.S. Architectural Technology 
Job Outlook: Employment of drafters will increase more slowly than average through 2018. Many drafters are concentrated in slow-growing and declining industries that offer few opportunities. Because of CAD technology, other workers can do the work and it can be outsourced overseas via the Internet. Most job openings are expected from the need to replace drafters who retire or move on.
Salary Range (National Average): $28,000 to $34,000
Education Level: Training for this occupation generally requires a High School Degree, plus additional coursework in a vocational or technical school. In some cases, employers may require an Associate Degree.
Additional Training/Education: Employers prefer to hire structural drafters who have either a technical institute certificate requiring 1-1/2 to 2 years, or a 2-year college associate degree. Training in computer aided drafting and design, and engineering technology is vital. Certification by passing a technical examination by the American Design Drafting Assocation will be helpful.
Advancement Info: Entry-level or junior drafters usually do routine work under close supervision. After gaining experience, they may become intermediate drafters and progress to more difficult work with less supervision. At the intermediate level, they may need to exercise more judgment and perform calculations when preparing and modifying drawings. Drafters may eventually advance to senior drafter, designer, or supervisor. Many employers pay for continuing education, and, with appropriate college degrees, drafters may go on to become engineering technicians, engineers, or architects.
Recommended Skills:
  • Analyzing requirements for a new product or service and creating a design to satisfy those needs.
  • Paying attention to what other people are saying, and taking time to understand the points being made.
  • Using mathematics and/or statistics to solve problems.
  • Ability to identify a problem, review related information, develop and evaluate options, and implement a solution.
  • Using logic to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Talking, giving speeches, or speaking in a group to convey information, explain ideas, or give instructions.
  • Composing and communicating your ideas in written form.
Recommended Values:
  • Doing something where you can physically see the results of your work.
  • Having the ability to work with equipment or material things.
  • Having a routine job where the duties are very predictable and not likely to change over a long period of time.

* National data collected by the Department of Labor in 2014 with projections through 2024. For New York green job information please click here.
* For New York salary data information please click here
* For New York green job information please click here.

Understanding acquiring positions in this field may be enhanced through continuing academic study (i.e. earning a baccalaureate or a master's degree) and/or work experience in the field, Queensborough Community College has established transfer agreements with other institutions for students who wish to further pursue their educational goals. Students are highly encouraged to meet with one of our Career Services to fully understand the opportunities available through study in their degree program.