The faculty of the CM Department spent this morning giving tours of the facilities to the ACCE accreditation team. Students may not appreciate them, but we actually have some great facilities at Sac State. Our CM 9, 40 and 135 labs are among the best in the CM universe. Mike asked all the faculty to show up to walk the team through the labs in which we operate. We didn't need to be there, but it looked really good that we all showed up. But the best part of the morning was when Henry Meier showed up. Most of you know Henry, but if you don't, he's the President of SCMEF and is serving as the Member of the CM Department Industrial Advisory Board's representative to meet with the accreditation team. He also basically serves as the "athletic director" of all our Reno teams and is a CM alumni. So stating the obvious, he gives a lot to the Department. Henry certainly didn't need to be there today, but he was. And he stayed all day and is having dinner with the accreditation team as well. I should also say that Henry is a PX for Swinerton and has a family. In other words, he's a busy guy. But he didn't hesitate to volunteer a full Sunday to serve as the the Department's industry bridge to the accreditation team. We all owe Henry a huge "thanks", so when you see him (and at some point, you will all meet him), tell him you appreciate his efforts.
Quotes of the Week
Based on Henry's service...
"Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on Earth." -- Muhammad Ali
"Your life and mine should be valued not by what we take, but by what we give." -- Edgar Allen, founder of Easter Seals
I found two articles on-line that I thought were pretty interesting.
First, there is this article (click here) regarding billing rates for architects. Billing rates are considered a forecast for the construction industry because the more architects are billing, the more buildings will ultimately be constructed.
Second, I just read this article on the historical mission and funding sources for the University of California and California State University systems (click here). It's from a left-leaning publication, so it's definitely trying to make a point. But that aside, it does a pretty good job of telling how the public university system in California has gone from a taxpayer subsidized institutions to tuition driven institutions (and hence why your tuition has gone up dramatically) and how Governor Reagan and Proposition 13 were at the genesis of this change. It's a worthy read if you have 10 minutes and care about higher education in California.
CM News and Events
The Q&A session with the accreditation team is tomorrow afternoon in 4003 Riverside. If you have time, stop by and participate.
None this week
What's Going On In Classes
CM 10: This week's guest lecture will be your classmate Nick Hansen's dad, Bill. Bill is a superintendent with R.M. Harris. This could be the best Show-and-Tell session ever because it's rare for superintendents to come to Sac State. Be sure to pay attention and ask a lot of questions. Some of you may ultimately choose to pursue the superintendent route.
CM 121: My goal is to grade the exam tonight and tomorrow so we can have a recap on Tuesday. Thursday's lecture will continue on rough carpentry/wood framing, focusing on partitions. Lab this week will be the rough framing on the roof and possibly some roofing. I'm going to try to get some Goodyear labs graded this week so you get some feedback.
CM 126: It's a big week for Joe Perez-Windmiller. He will be giving his toolbox presentation on Monday (fire emergency) and he and Chip will giving their team presentation on Wednesday (pick plan and crane coordination). Wednesday will also have two toolbox presentations (DougyFresh Shirk on shoring systems and Marky Mark Campbell on unconscious person first aid), so it will be a busy day. I hope to get a homework assignment or two graded this week as well.
I'm in a great mood as I write this. Awesome Halloween party Saturday night. First pheasant hunt of the season Sunday morning and I had to clear out my sewer line Sunday afternoon. "What, you're happy about having had to clean your sewer line?" you're likely asking yourself. Well, not really. But I'm stoked that I didn't have to call a plumber. Instead I called Stan. You see, my buddy Stan is the MacGuyver of my crew. He has every tool known to mankind and can fix anything. So when I was bummed about having to buy a 50' snake, I stopped off at Stan's house to see if he had one. Not only did he have one, but it was one of the industrial-sized motorized ones (his aunt and uncle used to own hotels. I had to ask). So he set me up big time. But that was just the half of it. Later, he stopped by to see if I needed help. And yes, I really did. The contractor I hired to put in a clean out in my sewer line put in a 90 degree bend that was hard to get the snake into. With an extra set of hands and Stan's ingenuity, we figured it out. It still took awhile to get the clog out, but it finally did and I will be forever shocked to see the garbage my wife and kids flush. Seriously, I'm amazed and completely grossed out.
Anyway, I am so stoked about Stan's overly cool act of kindness, that, despite not getting my Sunday-day-after-going-hard-recovery-nap, I'm in a fantastic mood. If you're in CM 10 or CM 121, you had better hope this feeling lasts. And if it lasts until I write your exams, you all owe Stan a beer (He's a Pliny guy, if you're wondering. I'll make sure he gets it).
Quote of the Week
"I've come to the conclusion that the two most important things in life are good friends and a good bullpen." -- Former major league player and manager Bob Lemon
This quote is appropriate for two reasons. Obviously because of the MLB playoffs, but also because of the story up above. Take care of your friends.
CM News and Events
There are no student events this week that I know of. However, this is the week the CM Department goes through its evaluation for accreditation. I have a ton of stuff to pull together to prove that I actually teach you something (yeah, I'm still figuring out how I'm going to pull that rabbit out of a hat...), so if I'm more absent-minded that usual, you have my apologies. Also, be cool to Mike this week and try not to burden him with unnecessary issues. He's likely developing a minivan-sized ulcer right now.
Nothing this week. But if you haven't heard, it's job huntin' season for you graduating seniors. Other students, the internship hiring season typically come later. If you haven't done so yet, polish your resume. And a word to the wise: unless you're looking for a job as a PX (and you're not), keep your resume to one page. No one in our department, including faculty, can justify a resume longer than one page. If you cannot say it in one page, you will lose your audience.
What's Going On In Classes
CM 10: Exam this week. It will cover all of the classes and guest speakers we have had (Nick Parker (Turner Construction), Heman Chand (Whiting-Turner), Tim Murchison (URS), Ruzaw Cooper & Bill Schmazel (Cooper Oates Air Conditioning), and John Nunan & Scott Maxwell (Unger Construction), as well as my lecture on the Reno teams. Test will be true/false.
CM 121: Exam on Tuesday. True/false, multiple choice, and one or two problems to be solved (as we discussed in class). Thursday we will start discussing timber construction. We will start the timber estimate for Goodyear this week and will spend two weeks on it.
CM 126: I'll be honest--I don't have the list of speakers on me, so I'm going to wing this. Please confirm with me tomorrow morning if there is some confusion.
Two toolbox presentations on Tuesday: Maria Gutierrez (safety awareness/red tape) and Tom Salazar (lock-out/tag out). I'm hoping for a "what not to do" demonstration from one of those presentations, but I won't say which...
I'll present something on quality control. Ironically I'm guessing it will be low quality given that I haven't started it yet and I have a two hour Department meeting tomorrow. And unlike some of you, I don't use my laptop when others are speaking. It's rude. And yes, I just passive-aggressively nagged you just like m
On Thursday, Sean Davis will cover crane safety in his toolbox. Then Cliff Allison and Dan Mello will give their team presentation on managing labor. Assignment 6 is due on Wednesday. I hope to have it graded by Thanksgiving. 2013.
Last Friday, ten CM students visited the San Francisco Transbay Terminal project (where Justin Burke, CM '10 and Stacy Wilson, CM '12 work for Turner Construction, which is the agency CM on the project). Involving six blocks in a heavily congested city, it's needless to say that this project is unbelievably complex. The terminal portion is just over $1 billion, with the excavation (just the excavation!) being $200 million (and trending more).
If you ever get a chance to visit this project, make the effort to go. If you're going to San Francisco anytime soon, just walk in the vicinity of the project so that you can get a feeling for the magnitude of the project. One other thing: if you walk any construction site, be sure to wear pants and sturdy shoes. Which means definitely don't wear shorts and mountain biking shoes.
On Saturday, the Sac State Construction Alumni Chapter held it's 3rd annual Sporting Clays Shoot at Camanche Hills. It was a fantastic event*. THANK YOU to all the CM students that gave up a beautiful Saturday to volunteer. If you're on a Reno team and did not volunteer, thank your teammates that did. The proceeds go to the Reno effort. Every dollar made from the event means a dollar you don't have to raise. You should be grateful that the alumni like you.
I don't know the final dollar amount raised, but I'm sure it was a good chunk of change. Combine that with the $20k raised at the Tricorp Hearn/TMCS golf tournament (and THANK YOU for the students that volunteered at that event as well), and the CM program is getting a lot of love from the construction industry. I wish I could have stayed for the raffle and the peach cobbler.
*My only gripe about the event was that my team was callously robbed of first place. We didn't have five shooters, but we were able to get the best score, in a perfectly reasonable way, with only four shooters. Not that I'm bitter. I'm not. Well maybe a little. OK, a lot. But hey, it's for charity, right?
Quote of the Week
"If you're not in over your head, how do you know how tall you are?" -- T.S. Eliot
I love that quote--it's possibly my favorite. This is the time of year when things start getting busy (really busy in some cases). Just remember, everything you're going through is a test of your character. The more work you're juggling, the more character you're building.
CM News and Events
October 12: The American Society for Professional Estimators is hosting Dr. Jim Adrian of Bradley University to Sac State. ASPE has graciously covered the cost ($100) for 22 students! It's all filled, but if you want to be added to the wait list, shoot me an e-mail.
October 12-14: CMSA Camping Trip. I'm not sure what happens at the camping trip (not sure I want to know), but I hear it's fun. Just don't let Tommy feed chili and hot dogs to random dogs.
Gilbane Building Company: Gilbane will be on campus for an info session on October 16 and ill be conducting interview on October 17. They are looking for interns. Several Sac State CM students have interned for them and have great things to say.
What's Going On in Classes
CM 10: NO CLASS THIS WEEK! I think we have a guest speaker the next week (John and Scott of Unger). If not, we will have the first exam. I will clarify this in next week's update.
CM 121: More on Goodyear. Monday's lab section will be working on footings, while Tuesday and Thursday will be working on the slab(Monday will work on the slab next week). If I get my act together, we will also have Homework #2 assigned this week.
Remember in the first lab session I said that I'm pretty relaxed about lab but I expect everyone to make an strong effort to complete as much of each weekly lab assignment in lab? Well, that lasted about a week. Already people show up for lab and leave 30 minutes later. There will be some labs that you will be left up to you own devices, but for now, I want people to work in lab. So this week, your labs will be due at the end of lab. Plan on putting in a full lab session. REMEMBER: name your files "Week 6 <last name>.xlsx
CM 126: I cannot recall off the top of my head who is responsible for the Tool Box presentation(s) on Monday, but hopefully they remember. We will have a presentation after the Tool Box(es). On Wednesday, CLASS HAS BEEN CANCELED! The presentations for that day will be rescheduled. I'll try to e-mail you the revised schedule.
By the way, a homework assignment was posted on Wednesday that is due this Wednesday to SacCT. I was going to make you ask me how many people could work together, but I'm not sure I want to get 20 e-mails, so I'll just tell you that you can work in pairs (that means no more than 2 per group. If you cannot find a partner, you can easily finish the assignment by yourself. In fact, the only reason I'm allowing people to work in pairs is because I'm behind in grading and don't want to create more work that I can handle. Even though that's the case, don't try to convince me that it's smart to allow groups of 10 because it will reduce my work load even more. I'm cool with groups of two).
Also, remember to put you name(s) in the files you upload.
I teach people who will be building our country's infrastructure.