January 28, 2014
Volume 11, Issue 1
President: Ken Gerard
Vice President: Megan Plassman
Treasurer: Eric Zimmer
Secretary: Jay Chamberlain

President's Message


Dear Members,


Hopefully this message finds all well and excited to see what 2014 will bring. It was a dynamic fall for the Board as I was out of the area on business for several months and was unable to attend several of the monthly meetings. However, it was gratifying to me that the other board members were able to pitch in and do what was needed to be done in such a great manner. The Section membership should be proud of their Board members and the hard work they put in.


This spring looks exciting as well for our Section. Our monthly meetings will include joint meetings with the Geotechnical and Structural Engineers Association of Ohio (SEAoO) groups here in Cincinnati. We are also working with other local professional organizations here in Cincinnati to have joint meetings with them. These may be social events and may also be technical as well.


February contains EWeek. The Board will again participate in an afternoon with an elementary school class. We will also spend some time with a Cub Scout den to show them what civil engineers do. Who knows, we may just have some influence on the next Roebling, Darcy, or Manning.


During my recent travels I saw billboards with the portrait of Nelson Mandela with the message that one person can make a difference. That is something that we should all try to achieve in our own way. We're civil engineers. With our training and experience, we can make a difference in people and our community.


Something that every Section Member needs to do if they haven't done so already is to look at the proposed by-laws and constitution and vote on them. We need to have two-thirds of the membership vote in order for the result of the vote to be valid. If you haven't done so already, you will be contacted by one of the Cincinnati Section officers regarding casting your vote.




Ken Gerard

Have a topic you want us to cover next Fall? 
Contact Ken Gerard at Ken.Gerard@parson.com or
Megan Plassman at Megan.Plassman@duke-energy.com .
2013-2014 ASCE Cincinnati Branch/Section Leaders


President - Ken Gerard, P.E.


Ken is a Supervisory Civil Engineer with Parsons Government Services. He joined Parsons in 1991 to work on the Fernald Environmental Management Project and remained in Cincinnati after that project task was over supporting other Parsons projects. Prior to working at Parsons, Ken worked as an engineer for several land development related engineering and survey firms and the Calvert County Engineers Office in Maryland. He has a BS in Civil Engineering from the Virginia Military Institute and a MEA from the George Washington University. Ken is a registered engineer in Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana and numerous other states. Ken has been active in the ASCE Cincinnati chapter since coming to Cincinnati.


Vice President - Megan Plassman, E.I.


Megan is a Pipeline Engineer with Duke Energy. Prior to joining Duke Energy full time she co-oped with Duke Energy for four quarters and Stantec, Inc. for two quarters.  She has been a member of the ASCE Cincinnati Section since 2006 and has been the newsletter editor since 2011. Megan attended the University of Cincinnati where she received a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering in 2011. She registered for graduate classes and will be pursuing a graduate degree in Masters of Business Administration in the Fall from Xavier University.


Treasurer - Eric Zimmer, P.E.


Eric is a Project Engineer working for Jacobs. He joined Jacobs in 2006 where he is involved in the design and construction of industrial projects, primarily manufacturing facilities. Prior to his current position he has worked as a Structural Engineer and in Project Controls. Eric received his MS in Civil Engineering from the University of Cincinnati, along with a MBA from Thomas More. He is a registered engineer in Ohio and has been an active member of the ASCE Cincinnati chapter since 2006.


Secretary - Jay Chamberlain, E.I.


Jay is a Project Engineer with THP Limited, Inc. He joined THP full time in 2012 where he is primarily involved in the design and construction administration of post-tensioned reinforced concrete structures. Jay attended the University of Cincinnati where he received his Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering (2010) and Masters of Science in Structural Engineering (2012). Jay has been an active member of ASCE since he first joined as a student in 2005. While attending UC, Jay was also involved in Engineer's Without Boarders and led the structural design of a new school in Burere, Africa.



Looking Back - Fall/Winter 2013/2014 Monthly Meetings

ASCE Cincinnati organized many successful programs during the fall of 2013 touching on many different disciples of civil engineering such as construction, structural, transportation and water resources.  2014 will be focused topics not yet discussed.


September - Washington Park


The section started their year off with a tour of Washington Park given by Steve Schuckman.  He focused on the attention to detail, the challenges faced during construction of the park and how and why the park layout was chosen.  At dinner at a nearby restaurant, Zula, Frank Ellert with THP gave a speech on the steel reinforcement needed for the underground garage that was built under the park.




October - I-75 Projects including Brent Spence Bridge


Joe Vogel gave a presentation on the different phases that make up the I-75 construction.  He explained what area would be covered under each phase and the reason for that particular project.  He also covered the Brent Spence Bridge and gave an update on where that project stands and the difficulties that they have faced trying to get the project approved.


November - Stream Restoration


Scott Peyton with Stantec gave a wonderful presentation on stream restoration and what it takes to find a natural solution to each day issues with trouble streams.  He spoke to determining what class a stream is, how you can determine this, how to determine the true flood plain and the different states that streams go through and how all of this affects the solution of how to restore a stream to a healthy state.


December - Annual Holiday Party


We all gathered at Montgomery Boathouse to enjoy great food and company.


January - How to Manage Your Career


Since our speaker cancelled due to bad weather, this was a free meeting for those who made it.  We had plenty to eat and great conversation.  We did hear from the UC students in attendance as to what they experienced during their internships and their plans once they receive their degree. 

Looking Ahead - Winter/Spring 2014 Monthly Meetings


February - Ohio PE Requirements joint meeting with the Structural Engineers Association of Ohio (SEAoO). Mr. John Greenhalge, the Executive Director for the Ohio State Board of Registration for Professional Engineers and Surveyors, will inform us of current issues before the Board, update on how Ohio interacts with the NCEES and changes that might be coming.


March - Joint Meeting with Geotechnical group. Location TBD.


April - Annual Student Banquet. Location TBD.


May - TBD.

Committee Upates


The Cincinnati Section of ASCE has three committees: educational outreach, membership, and programming. The time commitment is minimal and the personal rewards limitless. Not only do you qualify for 2 continuing professional development (CPD) hours for one year of service as an active committee member in the State of Ohio, but you will also receive the personal satisfaction of contributing to your profession and the betterment of your community. Please see below for a brief description of the three committees and learn how you can become involved.


Educational Outreach:


The Educational Outreach Committee has had another great year thanks to all of our members' support! The committee has continued working with and supporting the University of Cincinnati on several proposals to the National Science Foundation. Thank you to all of our members who volunteered and helped with the Minorities in Mathematics, Science and Engineering workshop, the UC Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program, the UC Research Experience for Teachers (RET) program, and several other high school outreach programs. We are in the process of helping to establish a professional development program with the UC CEEMS Educators by working with the Science Consultant from Hamilton County ESC and the Co-Convener of the Greater Cincinnati STEM Collaborative. Earlier in the year, several committee members also presented to a preschool class and a group of first graders. We did fun interactive marshmallow/pretzel/graham cracker structures with the preschoolers and a more competitive index card structure building activity with the first graders. We have big ideas for future projects and we encourage you to become involved. Your involvement can be as little as a one time speaking event, or as lengthy as a reoccurring volunteer. If you are interested in joining the committee, please contact Julie Cromwell at jcromwell@thpltd.com.






The Membership Committee consists of members who have volunteered to be ASCE Points of Contact. Each Point of Contact is responsible for hanging the monthly flyer in the common area at their office. The goal was to reach potential members who might not know about the meetings otherwise. So far, we have had several new memebers due to the efforts of the Points of Contact. ASCE would like to thank all of our memebers who have contributed to spreading the word and increasing membership involvement. If you are interested in joining the committee or becoming a Point of Contact, please contact Jay Chamberlain at JChamberlain@thpltd.com.




The Program Committee has worked hard to try and create a diverse program year. ASCE is here to serve you, our members, and in doing so, we would like to have programs that highlight interesting topics within your discipline. If you have suggested future meeting topics or would like to become involved in the committee, please contact Megan Plassman at Megan.Plassman@duke-energy.com.


Student Chapter Updates


C State Logo  


Cincinnati State's ASCE Student Chapter takes pride in being one of the most active organizations at Cincinnati State. We strive to give back to the community and explore the engineering field. Cincinnati State's Student Chapter has been involved in numerous activities throughout the year.


This will be our 6th year teaching students the importance of civil engineering at Bright Elementary. The visit begins with a presentation of the different types of engineers and an explanation of what civil engineering is. The students then compete in groups building cup towers, the towers are judged upon strength and height. Cincinnati State students enjoy having the opportunity to teach young students and act as role models throughout the day. This year the chapter decided to expand the idea of sharing the importance of civil engineering to students at Woodward High School in hopes of encouraging students to further their education beyond high school. The visit included information about the construction courses available at Cincinnati State and a PowerPoint presentation featuring the events and activities that Cincinnati State's ASCE Student Chapter is involved in.


The Cincinnati State ASCE Student Chapter is always looking for ways to help the community. This will be our 6th year competing in Cincinnati's 2014 Canstruction Competition. The chapter looks forward to donating thousands of canned goods to the Free Store Food Bank to help the community. In addition to donating canned goods, ASCE students organized a volunteer team to participate in the 2013 Prepare Affair, the event involves cleaning up yards and doing some home repairs for elderly and low income property owners.


One of the many benefits of being a member of the Cincinnati State ASCE Student Chapter is the opportunity to explore and learn about the field of civil engineering. In addition to participating in many of the Cincinnati Section Meetings, the chapter has taken advantage of numerous opportunities to learn more about the engineering field. The chapter visited Terracon, led by Aaron Muck who walked the students throughout the different testing labs and provided an informative presentation describing the type of work Terracon is involved in. The chapter plans to tour CDS Associates later in the year.


The Cincinnati State Student Chapter spent an afternoon with the University of Cincinnati's ASCE Student Chapter in Indiana for lunch and a construction site tour. The two chapters took a tour of the new Lawrenceburg hotel and convention center under construction led by Messer Construction. The tour was educational and gave the chapters ideas for hosting the 2015 and 2016 Ohio Valley Student Conference.


Our student chapter plans to attend the ASCE Workshop for Student Chapter Leaders in Indianapolis in February to strengthen our chapter and gain important leadership skills.


Cincinnati State plans to compete in all of the events in the 2014 Ohio Valley Conference in Pittsburgh and improve upon last year's competitions.



In November a social was held at Catskeller in an effort to encourage younger members. It was very successful and we hope to hold another social during the Spring semester.

The University of Cincinnati student section hosted three of five meetings on the Horseshoe Casino. Geotechnical, Site Development, and Structural aspects of this project were presented at monthly meetings. The Construction and Special Inspection presentations will be held this semester.

Several students will be attending the Ohio Valley Student Conference in late March at Carnegie Mellon University. We have Concrete Canoe, Steel Bridge, Environmental, and Surveying teams this year. We appreciate your endless support.

In addition to the Horseshoe Casino presentations we will be returning to Friday meetings at noon. We are thankful for all who have agreed to present. 


Update on the Ohio Council


The Ohio Council of ASCE Sections was organized in 1969 to focus statewide attention on issues of interest and concern to civil engineers. There are six local ASCE sections in Ohio, each having representation on the Ohio Council in proportion to its membership. The Council meets twice annually, in spring and fall. The April meeting is normally held in Columbus, and the October meeting locations rotate among the sections. All ASCE members are welcome to attend Ohio Council meetings.


Ohio Council addresses several areas of interest to members of ASCE in the State of Ohio. In the most general sense, the Council fosters communication among the six sections. At the semi-annual meetings, each section gives a report on the section's activities during the 6 months since the previous meeting, and there is an opportunity for questions and discussion of new activities by the sections. The Council also reviews policies and actions under consideration by the ASCE National board, and may vote to make a recommendation to the Board. The Council may at also initiate actions with respect to the National Board on topics of interest.


The Ohio Council was also responsible for developing the Ohio Infrastructure Report Card, which is a component of the ASCE Report Card for America's Infrastructure. The Council also maintains and updates the Ohio Infrastructure Report Card to coincide with updates to the national report card.


The Council has also conducted a legislative program for many years, initially as an independent effort, and currently in cooperation with OSPE. The program includes cooperative monitoring of legislation with OSPE, partial support of a lobbyist, and conducting a State Legislative Day each year.


Another long running Ohio Council activity is the annual Robert O'Shea younger member award for a paper on engineering ethics, which carries a $500 prize split evenly between the author and the Section Younger Member group, or Student Chapter. More information regarding the competition will be distributed to the section when available.

New Joint Venture


In January, ASCE will be holding its first joint meeting with The American Institute of Architects (AIA), American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) and American Planning Association (APA). The meeting will be held today, January 28th from 5pm to 6:30p and will cover the design of the Dunhumby building. If you would like more information on any of the other organization involved in this new partnership please go to their website.


AIA Cincinnati - A Chapter of The American Institute of Architects (http://www.aiacincinnati.org/)

ASLA - Ohio American Society of Landscape Architects (http://www.ocasla.com/)  

APA - American Planning Association of Ohio (http://www.ohioplanning.org/)


Engineering Week


ASCE Cincinnati Section will be holding two events this year in honor of Engineering Week to help promote civil engineering with young children.

Employment Opportunities


ASCE Cincinnati Section will begin posting employment opportunities in our newsletter and on our section webpage. If your company has an opening they need filled please send us an email with the position information and we will post it on our site as soon as possible.


Current Openings:


Parsons Corporation has an exciting opening for a Roadway Design Engineer to provide expertise, and to help facilitate growth in our Transportation Group in Cincinnati, OH. We are looking for engineers with a bachelors in civil engineering and 5-8 years of related work experience. The successful candidate must have ODOT experience in highway, drainage, and maintenance of traffic design. Proficiency in utilizing Microstation and other highway design software such as Inroads and Geopak is required. Experience in 3D design and modeling of highways is a plus.  To learn more about this opportunity please contact Heather.Robb@parsons.com or visit our website at www.parsonsjob.com, Job Number 21170. 


Thank You to Our Sponsors!  
 THP logo

If you would like to be a SPONSOR please contact Ken Gerard at Ken.Gerard@parsons.com .

Give us a call today!