The National Society of Professional Engineers hosted its annual meeting July 15 – 19, 2015 in Seattle, Washington. NSPE President Tim Austin, PE, F.NSPE, asked attendees to make the most of the opportunity to meet with “like-minded professionals who value their licenses, ethical practices, and accountability, and are passionate about their profession.”
With the theme “The Future of the Professional Engineer,” NSPE opened the meeting with a choice of attending two different tours. Many attendees enjoyed a tour Boeing’s west coast facility, while others enjoyed leisurely touring the Museum of Flight. Day one ended with a welcoming reception.
Sessions started promptly at 8:00 a.m. Thursday morning with a lecture on “Licensure and our Obligations”. After the lecture the annual Order of the Engineer Ceremony was held.
For the first time, NSPE had three concurrent sessions this year. Track one was for those seeking technical classes and was the Educational Track. For first timers who are looking to move forward in their career path, NSPE offered an “Emerging Leadership Track”.
For those who have attended before, or are already emerging leaders, the final track was the “Advanced Leadership Track.” Attendees reconvened for a tasty, but at times awkward lunch session. Attendees were served by a strange waiter, who later was revealed to be “Mystery Guest”, Rick Lewis, keynote speaker who spoke about “Seven Rules to Break: Challenge Current Thinking.” The speaker turned out to be the strange waiter that made some feel uncomfortable during the lunch.
For State Presidents and State Society Executive Council, day two ended with a State Leaders meeting with President Tim Austin, and NSPE Executive Director Mark Golden, while other attendees got some time to enjoy the Emerald City.
Friday Morning’s opening session had a panel of PEs speaking on “The Future of the Professional Engineer.” Again on Friday attendees were able to choose between the Education Track, Emerging Leaders Track or Advanced Leadership Track.
An awards luncheon was held Friday where SCSPE member L.G. “Skip” Lewis received the NSPE Distinguished Service Award.
The NSPE Conference closed with a riveting session with the Engineer who opposed the Challenger Launch, Allan McDonald. He led the session “Ethics Lessons Learned from the Space Shuttle Challenger Disaster.”
After the closing session the South Carolina Delegation who attended then went to the South Eastern Regional Meeting where they exchanged ideas with other state societies in our region.
In attendance from South Carolina were Spartanburg Chapter President Carlos Gittens, PE, SCSPE House of Delegates Representative Jim Justus, PE, F.NSPE, SCSPE President David Rykard, PE, and SCSPE Executive Director Adam B. Jones.