Northwest Branch Newsletter

President’s Address

Dear ASCE Northwest Branch Members:

Since our last newsletter, there has been turnover in leadership on the branch board and Northwest Branch members have attended bridge tours, social gatherings, STEM outreach, and professionally and academically enriching conferences. Please take the time to browse this newsletter and catch up on branch activities. This past year we’ve done much as a branch, but looking forward, I am particularly excited to see the impact of the American Society of Civil Engineers’ recent DVD release of Dream Big: Engineering Our World. However, before I rave about the potential that is Dream Big, introductions are in order.

Hello! I’m proud to greet you in this newsletter as the ASCE Northwest Branch’s new branch President. I first came to the board as an active member of ASCE, fresh out of college where I was an active participant in our student chapter’s Steel Bridge team. I served on the Northwest Branch board for a year as a Director-At-Large, providing ideas and input to the board and assisting with planning the 2017 Annual Meeting. At the encouragement of then President, Kris Roppe, I ran for an was voted in as President-Elect. I served as President-Elect between the 2017 and 2018 Annual Meetings, participating in Branch board meetings and observing Kris as he fulfilled his duties as President. Kris is still serving on the board as Past President and advising me as he sees fit. The Northwest Branch board hosted the 2019 Spring Technical Conference held on Thursday, March 14th, 2019 in Eau Claire, WI. Thank you to all who attended the event and to those who assisted to make it a success!

I am humbled by the opportunity to be your president, and excited to share my experience with and promote Dream Big: Engineering Our World. I had first learned about the documentary at a multi-regional Workshop for Section and Branch Leaders back in 2017 when the film was still under development. I participated in a Sneak Peak event that allowed attendees to view the film prior to its release. It was appropriately educational, incredibly inspirational, and surprisingly entertaining to say the least. The film was released in 2017 and can now be viewed in IMAX and other large theatres around the world. As of December 2018, however, students and educators are no longer limited to just that. Many public schools in the United States have now received a DVD copy of the Dream Big film and an education toolkit. If you haven’t heard of Dream Big until now, I encourage you to visit the film’s website, http://www.dreambigfilm.com, and watch the trailers and behind the scenes videos, read testimonials, and find a theater near you. A second mailing of the DVDs and toolkits took place in June 2019 for areas where a museum currently has an exclusive contract to show the film. These areas include areas within a 200 mile radius of St. Paul which includes the entire state of Minnesota and the following Wisconsin counties: Ashland, Barron, Bayfield, Buffalo, Burnett, Chippewa, Clark, Douglas, Dunn, Eau Claire, Jackson, Juneau, La Crosse, Lincoln, Marathon, Monroe, Pepin, Pierce, Polk, Price, Ruck, Sawyer, St. Croix, Taylor, Trempealeau, Vernon, Washburn, and Wood. We have received a DVD copy as a branch as well and will explore a Dream Big movie event that will allow you to watch the 42-minute film and equip you in your interactions with students and educators. I have watched the film again since the branch has received the DVD, and it was a healthy reminder to me that engineers are innovators first and foremost. It’s easy to get caught up in the nitty-gritty day-to-day tasks of our work, and we would benefit from occasionally taking step back to dream big.

In addition to a Dream Big screening, the branch is working on setting up other activities for 2019. We will be sending out invitations via email. Be sure to check in periodically so you don’t miss out on any opportunities! The Northwest Branch Website has recently undergone a facelift, and we are looking forward to adding content as we move through 2019.

In past years the branch has offered a scholarship to students from the Northwest region. We received applications in Spring 2018 and were proud two offer scholarships to two deserving students! We offered the scholarship again this spring, and we are proud to award it to a very deserving student. Congratulations William Berger from the Milwaukee School of Engineering!

Again, I thank you for the opportunity to serve on your board. You too can become more active such as helping out with STEM events, serving on the Annual Meeting and Spring Technical Conference planning committees, and attending socials and construction tours. As I said before, we are working on setting up events for 2019 and are always welcome to ideas from our members. If serving on the board or a committee is something that interests you or if you have an idea for an upcoming event, please don’t hesitate to contact me!

Sincerely,

Corona Woychik

Northwest Branch President

Featured in Newsletter No. 133, September, 2019

*As always, the views expressed in the president’s message are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the official positions of ASCE.

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