Alex's Story

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Alex Heijdenrijk – Architectural Technician 

Graduate – New Zealand Diploma in Architectural Technology 

"Studying kick-started my career!"

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What inspired you to study Architectural Technology? 

I’ve always been interested in the built environment. I was big into drawing as a kid and grew up in a creative family. I really like to make and create things that have a reason or purpose which made architecture an obvious choice. I started studying Architecture at University when I finished high school but feel I was ill-prepared and I didn’t do well. I spent quite a few years working various jobs until I decided to give the industry another go and discovered the course at WelTec. 

  

What did you learn at WelTec that helped you prepare for the industry? 

At WelTec I learnt everything I needed to design houses. We were given all the background knowledge of construction and how to build a house as well as all the programmes and the way the drawings come together, all necessary and invaluable learnings. The lecturers are awesome and their knowledge is incredible. They almost took us through a ‘trial run’ of being an architectural technician – we created a whole set of drawings for several projects and almost all of it was entirely what the industry uses.   

  

What do you do as an Architectural Technician? 

My job is to model up houses that exist in real life and design alterations and extensions to them. Seeing a house come alive in 3D and making changes to it is a rewarding part of the design process. After the modelling, I then create a full set of working drawings so that a builder can build them. 

Being able to work alongside, and communicate with, clients, engineers and builders is an important element to my role.  

  

What advice do you have for someone thinking about studying Architectural Technology? 

I’d recommend going to WelTec instead of University –  WelTec gave me everything I needed to know for my current role and it’s great that you can go from just two years of study to getting a job in the field.  

  

What’s next for you? 

I’d like to be self employed in the future working on small to medium sized residential houses. I also have a passion for tiny houses and would love to design and manufacture these.  

 

Explore the industry 

Alex currently works on residential projects at Balancedesign. Learn more here