Hi, my names Cooper, I am a studying Architectural and Civil Engineer at the University of Wollongong. I come from a family who are fascinated by design with my Dad being a carpenter and Mum being an interior designer. As a result as a kid I was surrounded by design, with renovations and constructions going on all around me. That’s where I believe my passion for architecture and engineering started.
Today I find myself still fuelled by my passion studying to become a structural engineer, so I can design the structures of the future. Within my studies at University I have also started to be interested by how we can minimise our impact on the environment and so I have started to look into sustainable design principles and how they can be implemented in the hopes of creating designs that have less of an impact on the environment.
I have been exposed to the construction and design industry consistently through my life through my parents, job and my degree, a growing trend that I have noticed recently are designs that create an impact usually have a succinct vision. I have found this to be as a result of multiskilled designers who have a knowledge in a variety of fields, for example architectural engineers. Having this wide variety of knowledge allows designs to be more cohesive and complex and create a lasting impact. I signed up for the Sustainable Homes Challenge because I wanted to work with a team which have a variety of skills and learn through the interactions we have. Delve deeper into sustainability concepts and principles. Finally, I wanted to explore experiment with different design solutions which I cannot explore due to brief constraints.
Out of this challenge I am hoping to get a better understanding of little and big concepts I can implement into my design which are more sustainable than what is currently used in the building industry. I also want to learn about new resources and tools to research, compose and present my ideas to my peers and colleagues. Finally, I want to start to challenge some of the principles and practices that are common within the design and construction of a building.
Within the challenge so far, our team has been looking into ideas of modularity and community living. We are wanting to achieve a design that adjusts the occupant to the area through the community, this is particularly important for our design’s user group (Refugees). I have particularly enjoyed looking into the cultures of the refugees and how their design principles are different than our own. For example, African cultures sometimes have an outdoor kitchen because the cooking is much more intense than our own and can not be limited by walls. In addition to this I have found working with a diverse team to be very eye opening and beneficial, some conversations I have had with my team has allowed me to think about ideas and concepts in new and different ways which has been refreshing.