Life beyond Radford

Last updated 8.12.2020

Matthew Lippiatt-Sidman ( Lippiatt )

Class of 2002
Lives Canberra, Australia
Attendance at radford Years 7-12
House Acacia
  • Masters, University of Canberra, Architecture
Work history
  • Architect
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What does life look for you now?

I've been a registered architect for 3 years now, and worked in the field for 10. Most of what I do is residential architecture around the Canberra region.

I married my high school sweetheart. We have been married for 5 years. We have a little boy who is about to turn 3. We also have two 'fur babies', a pair of Labradors; one yellow and one chocolate.

I had to give my favoured sports away after a couple of ACL reconstructions. Since then I have got into mountain bike riding, and loving it.

Tell us what you are passionate about?

I love my job, and have strong opinions on where architecture is in Canberra, and where it should be.I'm still a sport fanatic. Love my mountain biking, cricket, soccer, NFL and NRL. I'm a member of the Raiders, and a vocal member of their online fan forum.

When you were young, what were you hoping to be when you grew up?

I wanted to be a pro athlete. However, my ability didn't match my ambitions. Sports journalism was an option, but a very cut throat business, especially for non-pro athletes.However, at school, I was very good at tech drawing, problem solving, and enough artistic flair to make a run at architecture. So, I'm very glad I was pushed in that direction.

What is your favourite Radford moment?

This first was returning to Year 7 camp as a Prefect. I was the Prefect on duty with the mountain bikes, and taking a former class mate, who was very scared about being on a bike, and her group for the usual trip. However, today was different, Mr Mordike (a former drama teacher) was with us filming. The Year 7's were particularly excited, and 'jumped the gun' with the filming. In a race to get in front of them as their guide, I managed to stack quite heavily. This meant I was a 'superstar' feature of that Years video. Hello again Class of 2007.

The second was the Year 12 Review. I had an absolute ball doing that. Anyone that gets the chance really should. Its a lot of fun.

Do you have a particular role model or inspirational figure from Radford or now?

Not an inspirational figure, but I certainly had help from a few. Mr Huitker was one, having coached my soccer team, and taken me to the UK on a soccer tour. He certainly helped with my confidence and drive.

How easy was it to decide what to do in life?

The family life stuff was easy. I knew exactly want I wanted even then.

Architecture was more of a teething process, but I knew within 18 months of study this was for me.

Did your further study or career go exactly as you'd planned?

So far so good, yes.

What do you know now, that you wish you'd known when you were at Radford?

Diplomacy, problem solving, writing skills and basic maths are all far more important than you know. So, while you might be bored in Maths, Science or some other subject, remember, at some point you will actually apply the same skill in a different manner in life, especially if you decide to have children.

What advice do you have for current students?

What you achieve at school will set you up for what you do after. That doesn't always mean academia either. Friends, sport, travel and any other experiences can be just as important.

Also, the 'school you', might not be the 'after school you'. The sooner you find out who you really are, the easier life is.

Where are you now?