Hi. I’m Matthew Cornell. I’m a structural engineer with 20+ years structural engineering experience in residential, industrial and small commercial jobs in Queensland. These are my 5 questions.
1. How did you become an engineer?
At school I aimed high and worked hard. I was interested in science, building things, electronics and computers. Spurred on and supported by my fantastic parents, I achieved decent Year 12 results and went to James Cook University to study engineering.
At that time I didn’t know I wanted to be a structural engineer – it just seemed like a good mix of science and fun.
2. Where do you live and why?
I live in Brisbane now but I grew up west of Mackay, Queensland in a sugar-producing town called Marian.
Mackay was right for me growing up. It’s a great place to go to school and has a lot of spirit. I moved around after university but ended up back in Mackay for 10 years until 2013.
Now my home is in Brisbane.
Brisbane is a great place to be growing our business and there’s so much to do on weekends.
There’s a wealth of great people with the same friendly atmosphere I love from my time in Mackay.
We live on the north side of the river because of its proximity to the airport and our office in Hendra but my wife and I love exploring and finding new places to have breakfast and dinner. We’ve travelled as far as the Sunshine Coast and the Gold Coast for a nice meal.
I think Brisbane has a lot of potential and I’m excited to have an office there.
3. What do you like about being an engineer?
I like helping people look after their properties. Property is a great wealth-building tool but it can also be a great nest egg.
When we design and document projects, we do it carefully and with smart engineering. It’s the best way to provide value for money.
Not all homes and building perform to expectation. So we also spend a lot of time inspecting buildings and finding ways to strengthen, stiffen or replace elements that are up to standard.
New homes, renovations and house repairs are my favourite types of project. I have great clients that appreciate the service we offer. Working with these people is the thing I like best about my job.
4. What is your greatest challenge?
As a business owner, my greatest challenge is taking time off.
Even though we have a great team of structural engineers in our office, our clients love to know they have direct access to me by phone and email.
We have projects in the design stage and construction stage constantly and I try to be always available if unexpected conditions arise on site.
That makes it hard to go away for any length of time.
My wife, Debbie, is awesome and understands that I have to answer my phone on holidays – and that makes it ok.
5. Where to from here?
Cornell Engineers has always been about being in the right place to provide a service to people who need help with structural engineering.
The Queensland market place has changed since we started back in 2003 and we change our business with it.
We’ll always be here for Queenslanders (and hose further away). Our experience and local knowledge mean that we’re a great choice for looking after your property whatever stage you’re at.
As we say: Building. Maintaining. Repairing. We’re Cornell Engineers.