Matt Bickel: Focal Point 1

Focal Point: Matt Bickel, AIA, LEED AP

Wold Team

“I think the root of my interest in architecture lies in the fact that I enjoy helping people. In the public sector, I get to work with large groups with diverse backgrounds and perspectives to help them accomplish a common goal for their facilities. I love being a part of that process -- something that is bigger than myself.” Throughout his 19 year career at Wold Architects and Engineers, Matt Bickel, AIA, LEED AP, has been able to assist many public sector clients in accomplishing their unique project goals.

Creating a Blueprint for Innovation

A 2001 graduate from North Dakota State University, Matt has spent his entire career at Wold. He is currently a relationship manager based out of our Illinois office. Working in the government sector, he spends time networking with leaders throughout the region to see how our team can benefit their organizations and communities. His responsibilities involve interacting with clients to assist in identifying the functional and operational needs of their facilities. Along with client collaboration, he guides project development through the Wold team to ensure the full range of creative possibilities are explored to find the right solutions. Staying informed with industry trends, Matt involves himself in business development research to remain at the forefront of innovation.

As a thought leader in our industry, Matt recently championed an article exploring the benefits of creating mental health crisis centers for communities. A building type that is growing in relevance nationwide, Matt and our team believe it is essential to create facilities that provide appropriate treatment to individuals experiencing mental health issues. What distinguishes these facilities is the holistic approach to care that they provide, while also lessening the burden on law enforcement and emergency department resources in the community. A unique building type, Matt hopes to see an increasing trend of similar spaces.

Looking to the Future

When asked what his favorite part about Wold is, Matt says, “The environment at Wold allows for accelerated professional development not common at many firms. It provides a support structure that promotes providing employees opportunities. For myself, this process has gone full circle. It’s eye-opening to have been here for 19 years, and to now be one of the firm leaders providing opportunities for our next group of talented professionals poised for leadership roles.”One of Matt’s most substantial pieces of advice to young professionals is to never pass up on new opportunities in the workplace. Even though some tasks may seem small, Matt says, “Every new experience helps enrich your perspective and allows you to be better prepared to approach future challenges with confidence and creativity. Creativity is being willing to take a risk and step outside of what is conventional.” Although he says looking outside of that conventionality may not always render the appropriate solution for the circumstance, it is important not to get discouraged. Rather, it is a critical part of the design and learning process that will enhance the next opportunity.

Finding the Time for Adventure

At home, Matt spends his time with his family doing a variety of activities. Matt and his wife, Carolyn, have two active and talented teenagers and a dog that loves to be “showered with attention”. Needless to say, there is seldom a dull moment in their household. A sports enthusiast at heart, Matt has coached both of his kids and their teams in several sports. On top of that, his family loves to travel as often as possible. Regardless of what they’re doing, Matt says what matters most is that they’re spending time together.

Matt Bickel: Focal Point
Matt and his family

For new adventures, Matt has several goals outside of his work life. An item on his bucket list he hopes to accomplish in the future is climbing Mount Kilimanjaro. On the leisurely side of travel, he hopes to take a trip to Venice, Italy, with his wife. As Matt’s life is full of unique experiences and memories, what accompanies it is an ambitious attitude for challenges ahead. This, from both a professional and personal aspect.

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