Humans of EHS: Matthew Schmaltz

Meet the people who surround you every day

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Matthew Schmaltz (11) stands next to the truck that took him 3 years to restore.

Hobbies are vast and varied and (11) Matthew Schmaltz’ is unusual. He likes to work on cars and plans on making his hobby into a career.

His father, Mr. James Schmaltz, a mechanical engineer for Ameren, has a passion for engines that he has passed onto his son. Matthew now has a childhood full of memories of working on cars with his father.

“It’s a good bonding thing with me and my dad,” Matthew said. “We always went to car shows when I was little, but whenever I really first started working on one was a few years ago. We bought a truck.”

In three years Matthew fixed up the truck with the help of his father.

“That is actually my first car,” Matthew said. “My dad has always been a Ford guy, so I like Fords.”

The Schmaltz’ first joint project was, therefore, an old Ford.

“We pretty much went through and restored it,” Matthew said. “It’s a mix match of all different types of parts. Whatever we felt best fit for the truck basically went in it.”

Fixing up a car is not all just hands on; mental processing also plays a big role in the transformation.

“We got the seat for the truck out of the Ranger, which is not the kind of truck I have, so we did use a lot of math and terms on that,” Matthew said.  “I think the math classes [at school] helped a lot, especially being an engineer. It’s very math based.”

Matthew plans to follow in his father’s footsteps for his career and become a mechanical engineer.

As a junior, he is thinking about possible colleges that would support his career choice.

“I’m probably leaning towards Rolla,” Matthew said. “ Just because my dad and a lot of his friends went there.”

Aside from the influence from friends and family, Matthew had his own reasons for wanting to go to Rolla.

“There’s a lot of good things in everything that I’ve heard about it,” Matthew said. “It has a smaller student body [than Mizzou], and it just seems like a really good choice.”

From a hobby to a career, Matthew’s engineering interests exemplify that passions can inspire a future.