You ran a good article on poor pay and conditions for architecture students (10 March, page 22). It is not that long ago that I was a recently qualified student and I now find myself being approached by dozens of them looking for work. Frankly - and this is not a reflection on the students so much as their education - they are invariably worse than useless to a small practice.

We architects aren't like lawyers, who each have the luxury of specialising in one thing. We have to be masters of all trades: artists, technicians, contract administrators, and so on. The average student can't even write a good letter, never mind design drainage or prepare a building warrant or planning application.

I pay the going rate and I never expect anyone to do unpaid overtime, but I'm not sure that I could afford a student or newly qualified architect, given their lack of productivity.

Lindsay Buchan, Edinburgh