February 2018  

SEAoO Membership Committee

What are membership benefits?

  • Reduced cost for SEAoO meetings which generally provide at least 1 PDH.
  • Reduced cost for the annual conference where you can get nearly all of the 15 PDHs required by the state board - this benefit alone covers your membership fee
  • Regular newsletters with articles of interest to structural engineers
  • E-Mail updates & information on the latest events affecting Ohio Structural Engineers
  • Opportunities to use your talents for the betterment of the engineering profession
  • Subscription to STRUCTURE magazine

What are the membership and renewal terms?

  • Membership runs from January 1st to December 31st each year
  • Renewals are due by December 31st of each year
  • Members that do not renew by December 31st are inactivated and must pay the new member fee to rejoin
  • New members may join at any time; membership runs through December 31st regardless of the date membership is created (i.e. not prorated)

Other questions?
Please contact Matt Inkrott (, Membership Committee Chair, with any additional questions regarding membership.

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SEAoO Education Committee

Scholarship Opportunities:

Exciting news!  We plan to release the 2018 SEAoO Educational Awards Application in mid-February.  We're excited to again be able to offer a total of $7,000 to undergraduate students!  Once the application is available, we will post it to the Basic Education Committee Webpage.

Jobsite Tours:

Once the weather breaks, if you or someone at your company is interested in presenting or giving a jobsite tour to any of our student chapters, please send us an email!  

SEAoO has student chapters at: 

  • University of Cincinnati
  • Ohio State University
  • University of Toledo
  • Ohio University
  • University of Akron
  • University of Dayton
Thank you,
Bernie Kooi, PE, SE, LEED AP
SEAoO Basic Education Committee Chair
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SEAoO Programs Committee

2018 Voice of the Member Survey

It is that time of year when the Voice of the Member Survey is distributed to the membership. This is your opportunity to provide feedback on topics, venues, and meeting times, so that we can better serve you. This survey will only take a few moments of your time. Please click the link for your region to access the survey:

Cincinnati Survey (Link)

Cleveland Survey (Link)

Columbus Survey (Link)

Dayton Survey (Link)

Toledo Survey (Link)

Deadline to participate is 5 PM on Wednesday, February 28th.

Our next committee meeting will be February 6, 2018 via conference call. If you are interested in offering feedback or taking a more active role in your local section, please let us know - we are always open to new ideas and new faces!

Thank you,
Antonio D. Verne P.E.
SEAoO Continuing Education Committee Chair
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SEAoO Licensure Committee

Putting Action to an Objective

Establishing structural licensure in Ohio will require work, likely for an extended period. Are you willing to share in that workload?

SEAoO’s support for structural licensure (SEAoO position statement) is one step in a journey where the path to completion is not fully mapped. To be sure, the legislative steps to pass a bill aligning with our goals are known - and these are but a few identifiable steps farther ahead along the path. Before a bill is put forward, its legislative advocates will need a firm sense that the measure has sufficient support. A lack of significant opposition is also beneficial.

For numerous reasons, elected representatives tend to avoid conflict unless closely held values are at stake. While we believe structural licensure will save lives, there is not an abundance of empirical evidence supporting this belief. Further, supporting data carries limited sway and might not convince many. As we have seen before, an engaging message or stirring story can have more influence than reams of data. This means there is work ahead to build the empirical and emotional evidence supporting our cause.

This work might take various forms: sharing what structural licensure means at a PTA meeting; learning what others expect from a structural engineer and discussing how our experience might differ; listening to the concerns of those who might be affected, even in remote ways, by structural licensure; keeping the topic fresh in our newsletter, and many other options.

Again - are you willing to share in that workload? There is no promise of success, only the recognition of working toward a goal you support and helping to build our profession’s status and public understanding of our work. Contact us to volunteer your efforts.

Your thoughts regarding the topic, and others, are welcome. Feel free to contact us and talk about options for contributing to this column.

Thank you.

Timothy M. Gilbert, P.E., S.E., SECB
SEAoO Licensure Committee
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Nuts, Bolts & Washers

Thank You

Last month I requested feedback from you regarding this column.  I am gratified by your positive response.  I will strive to share useful and/or interesting tidbits of information.

Controlled Failure

As structural engineers, one common objective is to create designs capable of withstanding any expected event.  Our codes and standards provide guidance on the forces and circumstances which should be considered.  But for many of us, designing a structure to fail completely in a controlled manner is outside our experience.  Surely, those involved with some seismic systems have exposure to the concept - and even here, the structure is generally intended to maintain enough stability for occupants to exit safely.  

But it’s likely that we all have seen support structures here in Ohio that are clearly designed for controlled failure: streetside sign posts.  In this intriguing article, 99% Invisible covers the basics in a form suitable for all - engineers and non engineers alike.  Please take a look, the article includes some great images and video clips.


In the past, I’ve shared some of the books I found interesting.  As you might observe, my reading covers an array that includes scientific nonfiction to pop culture apocalyptic sci-fi. Some items are not worth mentioning and a few continue to prod thoughts long after completion. Here are a few that I recommend from 2017:  

Non-fiction books
Fiction books
If you also enjoy “reading” by listening to audio books, please consider trying one of these podcasts (they’re like audio versions of magazines):

Please share your recommendations or send me a note & I'll share my full list. By the way, I did slightly exceed my goal of 55 books in 2017 and I have the same target for 2018.

Thanks again

Tim Gilbert
SEAoO Secretary


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