In our latest installment of Australia and Me we catch up with engineering consultant Rory Corbett, from Cork.
Where are you from in Ireland?
I am from Blackpool on the northside of Cork City.
When did you come to Australia and what brought you here?
I relocated to Sydney in May 2011 with my wife and two young kids on a 457 sponsored business visa. This is our second time escaping the recession. We lived near Shanghai in China for a year from 2009 to 2010, came back to Ireland, realised things were as bad as ever and decided to move somewhere our kids would have a better quality of life and wouldn’t be paying in the future for the excesses of the past for which they bear no responsibility.
What do you do for a living?
I am an engineering consultant. I work in project quality, risk management, commissioning and validation within the biopharmaceutical, pharmaceutical, nutrition, medical device and engineering procurement and construction management sectors. At present, I work in IT quality systems remediation and good manufacturing practice compliance for a multinational medical device company in Sydney.
Describe (in brief) your career path.
I went to college for eight years. I hold a certificate in applied chemistry from Cork RTC, a B.Sc (Hons) in Geology and an M.Sc in environmental analytical chemistry from UCC. I have worked since 1998 mostly as a self-employed consultant.
Is Australia a good place to pursue a career in your industry?
Yes indeed. If you have any sort of aptitude to hard work you will get on well in Australia. It is a lot easier to secure a senior position in your field than in Ireland. However, it is more difficult here to sell yourself for a position that is not an exact fit for your skill set. I don’t hold an engineering degree and this was never a problem in Ireland as I have a huge amount of industry experience, but you tend to be filtered out of the application process here based on formal qualifications.
What advice would you give someone looking to work and live Down Under?
If you’re emigrating with a family, ship everything in your home, it will save you a lot of money. Don’t expect life to be easy for the first six months or so as you adjust, it’s not all sun and surf. Try to get out and meet new people through playgroups and activities.
What, if anything, do you miss about Ireland?
You don’t see kids playing on the streets here in Sydney like you do in Ireland, the kids miss that. We miss our families, playing cards at Christmas time up at the High House in Blarney Street with my mates, a decent real turf fire, the Irish sense of humour and the slagging. I also miss watching my lifelong passion, Chelsea FC playing football at a decent hour of the day and my many trips to Stamford Bridge on a short cheap hop to London from Cork!