SAME/ASCE ANNUAL WINTER TECHNICAL CONFERENCE:

Conference returns for seventh consecutive year

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Marshall University’s Society of American Military Engineers/American Society of Civil Engineers student chapter presented its 7th annual Winter Technical Conference Thursday at the Memorial Student Center.

The conference attracted roughly 176 professional engineers and developers. Attendees received a complimentary breakfast, lunch and conference gifts.

SAME/ASCE student chapter publicity chair Cory Gibbs said the conference is an opportunity for student chapter members to network with professionals.

“It is equally advantageous for students of the SAME/ASCE student chapter because they are able to network with these professionals who are coming in and observing these technical presentations,” Gibbs said.

It is equally advantageous for students of the SAME/ASCE student chapter because they are able to network with these professionals who are coming in and observing these technical presentations”

— Cory Gibbs, SAME/ASCE student chapter publicity chair

Student chapter president David Cooper said the conference is also an opportunity for licensed engineers to get needed annual training hours.

“We offer an opportunity for professional engineers from the tri-state area to come in and obtain professional development hours,” Cooper said. “To hold your licensing as a professional engineer, you have to get so many of these professional hours a year to maintain your certification.”

Gibbs said licensed engineers must have 15 hours of professional development annually to maintain their licenses in West Virginia. The conference offers professionals up to six hours of development.

The conference consisted of a wide range of technical projects. Topics ranged from engineering ethics and project management to hydraulics and geotechnical projects. The variety of topics were meant to draw professionals from many fields of engineering rather than a specific one.

Richard McCormick, a retired professor from Marshall who started the Winter Technical Conference, said the idea behind the conference came from events he attended as a student.

“I have to give credit where credit is due,” McCormick said. “A gentleman by the name of Stafford Thornton started one of these at West Virginia Tech back in the ‘60s. I was a student at West Virginia Tech, so I got to participate in one as a student. When I came to Marshall, I told the students that we ought to do something like this.”

Proceeds from the conference will fund activities and competitions for the student chapter. The organization enters a concrete bridge and steel canoe competition annually, and 25-30 students who participate have all expenses covered.

The student chapter also partially funds field trips for members every year. Members can attend the New River Gorge bridge catwalk tour and Bluestone Dam tour at the price of transportation.

Patrick Breeden can be reached at [email protected] marshall.edu.

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