ASCE Region 6 Director’s Report

Top 4 Talking Points to Show Members the Benefits of Engaging in Their Membership

June 2022

by Jerry B. Paz, P.E., ENV SP, M.ASCE | ASCE Region 6 Director

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A Call to All Members:

As you read this note, the outcome of the ASCE Presidential Election will have been announced, and our new President-Elect is to be congratulated.  What is still uncertain to me is why less than 10% of all ASCE dues-paying members voted in this election?  If only 25% of Region 6 members voted, we could elect the next president – Every Time.  10% is not only embarrassing but also sad.  Sad that ASCE members are too busy to take 10 minutes to log in and vote.  Clearly, we have work to do.  At a time when ASCE Membership holds the most significant value in any professional society, it is troubling that taking an active interest in the success of our society is so poor.  My own ASCE mentor many years ago encouraged me to get active – to not only give back to our profession but to safeguard our profession.  We need a call to restore that sense of urgency among our current younger members, or our Society will die an unfortunate death.  Here are my top four (4) talking points to show dues-paying members the benefit they get from ASCE:

  1. ASCE is fun and rewarding. Sure, we have heavy lifting work to get done. Our profession is serious and stressful.  Lives are at stake based on our professional conduct and our duty to protect the health, safety, and welfare of the public is always paramount.  But, from our college days on the concrete canoe team, ASCE members have found away to keep thing lively while working to serve our profession. Keep it fun!
  2. If not you, then who?  Delegating your profession to others loses your input, and we need your input.  After all, this is your profession – fight for it.  It is better to fight united with others like you than alone.
  3. Show me the money!  Civil Engineers these days are in demand.  Again, it hasn’t always been that way, and ASCE helped to make that happen.  With the passage of IIJA led by ASCE, infrastructure funding for the next five years is locked-in.  That funding serves as a baseline of work for our communities and companies.  That investment spurs private development which is also roaring. Job security and advancement provides upward mobility, and active ASCE members know how to leverage their involvement into personal and professional success. 
  4. ASCE Members are respected on Capitol Hill.  It wasn’t always that way.  With the passage of IIJA, at no time in our recent history has ASCE membership carried such clout.  Our Congressmen and Senators are reaching out to us to gain support on critical legislation – because of the respect ASCE has earned.  It has been 25 years in the making, but now that we have it, we need to use it.  It is so much better of a position to be in than begging for crumbs, which we did for many years. 

I have the great sense that a renewed interest in ASCE is on the horizon.  We have too much to offer for it to go stagnant.  Let us pledge to not only step up our own game but bring another civil engineer along for the ride. 

To share your views or provide ideas on how ASCE can better serve its members and the profession, please email Jerry Paz at [email protected].