Q+A with Javier Alvarez Rodilla, Structural Designer (Dearborn)
How do you describe your job to people outside of the industry?
I specialize in providing engineering solutions for the design and construction of buildings. The ultimate goal of our team is to make sure the structures are safe and capable of withstanding the different elements to which they will be exposed. As a structural designer, I am in charge of producing construction drawings and assisting with the design of buildings. We mainly focus on commercial buildings such as offices or warehouses, and manufacturing plants.
Why did you decide to become an engineer?
My father, who is a civil engineer himself, sparked my passion for civil engineering. Growing up, watching him work on numerous projects and going to site visits with him caught my attention. Later on, my college professor, Dr. Kowalkoswki (who would later be my thesis advisor), introduced me to structural engineering. The fact that he was always enthusiastic during his lectures, and that I was always challenged to give my best, further increased my enthusiasm and interest in structures.
How would you describe life at Ghafari?
For me, my life at Ghafari has been a constant learning experience surrounded by great professionals. The best words to describe my experience at Ghafari are: motivating, autonomous but collaborative, challenging, fun, and rewarding.
What is the most exciting thing that has happened during your time here?
When I was relatively new to the office, I was given the opportunity to work on a large project in Mexico. I very much enjoyed being involved in the design and development of the construction drawings since the start of the project, as well as being the bridge between the Ghafari structural engineering team and the local structural engineers on certain occasions.
What is a key idea or lesson you have learned while working at Ghafari?
“Hard work pays off.” There are many jobs that require long working hours and a lot of effort to be completed, but these are the most rewarding jobs. It is personally satisfying for me to be a part of a team that produces very successful projects.
How do you like to spend your free time?
My other passions are watching and playing all kinds of sports and the world of photography. In my free time, you will likely find me either preparing for my next sports competition or discovering some of the beautiful places that our world has to offer!