What do you tell young people to do in order to prepare for an architecture career?

The first thing that I tell them is that a career in architecture is very rewarding and interesting. I tell them that I haven't had a boring day "at the office" in my 35 years of practice.

But if you don't have the stomach to speak in public and to make presentations, to work with a large amount of risk and liability, to lead a large, diverse group of people, to receive criticism, or to accept responsibility for the health, safety and welfare of the general public, then you should look to other careers.

Getting into architecture schools requires the top high school grades. Getting through architecture school requires perseverance and a thick skin. An architectural internship requires three years, minimum, and the passing of a difficult national test. It's a good thing that an architecture career is interesting and rewarding.

I would advise anyone interested in an architecture career to learn how to draw both by hand and by using building information modeling (BIM) software prior to architecture school.

Is there any type or style of building you would like to design that you have not yet had the opportunity to work on?

ASG's primary market are colleges and universities, who build almost every building type. I have, therefore, had the pleasure of working on laboratories, classrooms, office buildings, hospitals, performing-arts facilities, business schools, law schools, parking garages, central utility buildings, nursing schools, science buildings, computer buildings, athletic facilities, renovations, housing projects, libraries, fine-arts buildings, bookstores, admissions buildings, student unions, and many other specialty buildings or programs that colleges and universities build.

The style of campuses that we work on include neo-Georgian, modern, Gothic stone, brutalist, postmodern and just about all other styles. In the last 10 to 15 years, most of those buildings have been increasingly more energy efficient and sustainable. In the last 10 years, all of our projects have been completed using BIM. So the only building type or style that I haven't had a chance to work on are those that we haven't developed yet.

I am, however, looking forward to the future of a fully integrated practice, which is an inclusive, team-oriented approach to design and construction made possible by the use of BIM by architects, engineers, owners, contractors and subcontractors. This process promises to make the design and construction of buildings more efficient, less costly, more sustainable, less contentious and more satisfying than in the past.

Glenn Birx

Title: Chief operating officer, principal and vice president, Ayers Saint Gross

Age: 56

Hometown: Born in Baltimore, raised in Linthicum

Current residence: Phoenix

Education: Bachelor's degree in architecture, University of Maryland, College Park, 1980. Also attended Virginia Tech.

Family: Wife, Karen, a physical therapist in Anne Arundel County; daughters Laura and Emily

Hobbies: Skiing, scuba diving, surfing and golfing

tended Virginia Tech.

Family: Wife, Karen, a physical therapist in Anne Arundel County; daughters Laura and Emily

Hobbies: Skiing, scuba diving, surfing and golfing

/b>Skiing, scuba diving, surfing and golfing