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Monthly Archives: May 2015

Technical Society programs Aug.- Dec. 2015

 August 17: Harold Black, Prof. of Finance, em., UT: The Crisis of 2008, the Fed, and its consequences.
August 24: No Meeting, but instead see August 27.
August 27 (Thursday): Visit of Cherokee Farm Innovation Campus. We are meeting at 12 noon at the site. Coming from Knoxville take a right turn just after the Tennessee River bridge. Our host will be Cliff Hawks, President and CEO, Cherokee Farm Innovation Campus.
September 7: Labor Day – No meeting.

September 14: Allen Coggins, Naturalist: Some Intriguing Sylvan Factoids – some little known facts about Tennessee woodlands. .

September 21: Soren Sorensen, Professor of Physics, UT: What things are made of (retake of canceled August 10 presentation)
September 28: Woody Farrell and Holly Oswalt, Project Managers: TVA: Floating Houses Review.
 
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Posted by on May 25, 2015 in Meetings

 

June 2015 Technical Society News

 On June 1, 2015. Craig Fischer spoke on “Genomes and Medicine – Ancestral, Predictive, and Therapeutic” Genomics is an area within genetics that concerns the sequencing and analysis of an organism’s genome. The genome is the entire DNA content that is present within one cell of an organism. Experts in genomics strive to use genetic mapping to help understand disease.

Prior to 1953 genetics was almost at the Gregor Mendel stage of understanding. The change in technology is comparable to the change from an abacus to a computer. In 2003 the first human genome was published at a cost of billions of dollars. The technology and its implications are moving rapidly. Today the genome for a  person can be obtained for $100.  I, secretary Bob Scott, have had my genome mapped by 23andMe based on the information given by Mr. Fischer. (They say I am 2.8 % neanderthal- my wife thought it would be more). Currently genealogy information but not medical information is given by 23andMe. There are other companies that do genetic testing.

This is an area where technology, science, medicine and ethics will be impinging on public policies and it is an area where the Technical Society of Knoxville needs to be able to offer informed position papers.

On June 8, 2015 our speaker was Alexandra Brownfield, the Executive Director of Volunteer Knoxville. The Knoxville volunteer center- which is one of only four in Tennessee- was started by Ms Brownfield in 2014. The Technical Society is moving to increase its effectiveness in serving the technical community by providing opportunities for community service and this is an organization that is working toward a similar goal.

The Volunteer Center manages a community-wide volunteer website, VolunteerKnoxville.org, and mobilizes volunteers to meet local volunteer program needs. People interested in volunteering can go to the website VolunteerKnoxville.org.

On June 15, 2015, Robert G. Campbell PE , who is currently completing a four year term as a member of the Tennessee State Board of Architectural and Engineering Examiners (State Board), was the speaker. Mr. Campbell is a consulting engineer with Robert G. Campbell and Associates, a firm founded by his father. The State Board is concerned with engineering not being contracted on the basis of competency but instead being contracted based on price and on projects being designed by non licensed engineers.

On June 22, 2015, Gabriel J. Bolas PE , KUB Manager of Environmental Programs and Assistant to Chief Operating Officer was speaker. KUB handles water, waste water, gas and electricity and has 445,000 customers. KUB started in 1939 and it is managed by an independent board appointed by the mayors, KUB has 925 employeesand is the fourth largest TVA distributor. They have 130,000 electric poles to replace by 2060. The lines between substations are 68,000 volts. Substations are connected by optical fiber. KUB has 2300 miles of gas lines. Waste water overflows have been cut 75%. KUB is a very busy place.

On June 29, 2015 Maria Crowe, a mathematics teacher at the Career Magnet Academy spoke on the topic “The importance of STEM education, especially as it relates to East Tennessee”. Ms. Crowe recently arranged a tour of the Career Magnet School for the Technical Society. She coached a successful robot team in the FIRST competition and she is enthusiastic about the robot building as an educational tool. Robot teams need volunteers of almost any kind- but especially ones with technical experience- to interact with the students. Several STEM educators who have joined the Technical Society were in attendance including some who need help with FIRST robot building.

 
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Posted by on May 25, 2015 in News

 

June 2015 Technical Society Programs

On June 29, 2015 Maria Crowe, a mathematics teacher at the Career Magnet Academy will speak on the topic “The importance of STEM education, especially as it relates to East Tennessee”. Ms. Crowe recently arranged a tour of the Career Magnet School (CMA) for the Technical Society. She coached the schools successful robot team in the FIRST competition. Maria is also a faculty representative of CMA’s advanced manufacturing pathway, that seeks to prepare CMA freshmen for advanced manufacturing opportunities in the local area.

Maria has a B.S., General Engineering, from the U.S. Naval Academy (class of ’88), and an M.S., Engineering Management, George Washington University. She spent seven years on active duty, serving in various information systems management positions.

After homeschooling three children and teaching physics and chemistry at various homeschool co-ops, Maria was hired in April 2014 to teach math at CMA.

She moved to Knoxville with her husband and children in July 2011.

On June 1, 2015. Craig Fischer will be the speaker. The title of his presentation will be “Genomes and Medicine – Ancestral, Predictive, and Therapeutic”

Genomics is an area within genetics that concerns the sequencing and analysis of an organism’s genome. The genome is the entire DNA content that is present within one cell of an organism. Experts in genomics strive to determine complete DNA sequences and perform genetic mapping to help understand disease.

Prior to 1953 genetics was almost at the Gregor Mendel stage of understanding. In 2003 the first human genome was published at a cost of billions of dollars. The technology and its implications are moving rapidly. Today the genome for a  person can be obtained for thousands of dollars but understanding the meaning of 6 billion base pairs is in its infancy.  The May 25 News Sentinel had an article telling of a woman whose DNA had a sequence that would indicate she was prone to breast cancer. After agonizing thought she elected a preemptive double mastectomy.

This is an area where technology, science, medicine and ethics will be impinging on public policies and it is an area where the Technical Society of Knoxville needs to be able to offer informed position papers.

Craig Fischer has retired as director of project research for St. Mary’s Health System. He has an MBA from UT and a  bachelors degree in biology from Rockford College in Rockford, Ill.. He spoke to the Technical Society in August 2004 on  Hospital Clinical Trials in China.

On June 8, 2015 the speaker for the Technical Society of Knoxville    will be Alexandra Brownfield, the Executive Director of Volunteer Knoxville. She will speak about her organization which has as one goal “Connecting Volunteers to Volunteer Opportunities “. The Technical Society is moving to increase its effectiveness in serving the technical community by providing opportunities for community service and this will be an opportunity to learn about an organization that is working toward a similar goal.

Volunteer Knoxville was founded in 2014 to connect volunteers to quality volunteer opportunities, build capacity for local volunteer programs and promote volunteering in the greater Knoxville region. The Volunteer Center manages a community-wide volunteer website, VolunteerKnoxville.org, and mobilizes volunteers to meet local volunteer program needs.

Alexandra Brownfield describes herself as Wife, Mother & Humanitarian and creator of #STLVolunteer (a twitter site). She previously worked for the United Way of Greater St. Louis and Saint Louis University from which she also graduated. Her technology connection comes from her high school- Decatur Area Technical Academy.

On June 15, 2015, Robert G. Campbell PE will be the speaker. He is currently completing a four year term as a member of the Tennessee State Board of Architectural and Engineering Examiners. Anyone who is practicing engineering or architecture or who is interested in these professions is welcome to take this opportunity to learn about any changes in the state regulation of the professions.

Mr. Campbell is a consulting engineer with Robert G. Campbell and Associates.

The firm was founded by his father and it describes itself as “Robert G. Campbell and Associates designs diverse projects representative of our clients, our expertise and the firms ability with precision and value”.(PDH)

On June 22, 2015, Gabriel J. Bolas PE will speak on Engineering in KUB. Mr. Bolas is Knoxville Utilities Board Manager of Environmental Programs / Assistant to Chief Operating Officer, and was previously Energy Systems Engineering Manager at Knoxville Utilities Board and Electric Systems  Engineering  Manager.

He holds a BS degree in electrical engineering and a MS degree in engineering/industrial management from the University of Tennessee.(PDH)

 
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Posted by on May 25, 2015 in Meetings

 

TSK News May 2015

May 4, 2015 was a wrap-up of the April 30, 2015 working breakfast at Rothchilds.

On May 11, 2015 Dr. Al Hazari, demonstrated some of the ways he gets student interest in teaching science. (I, Bob Scott, was particularly impressed with him using a tomato catsup packet as a Cartesian diver). Dr. Hazari is Director of the Undergraduate Chemistry Labs at the University of Tennessee. Dr. Hazari’s quest to enhance science appreciation has included a regular goal ito inspire students to become inquisitive about science instead of fearing or dreading it. If you missed his presentation, try to see him somewhere else.

On May 18, 2015 Dr. Don Byerly, Professor Emeritus in the UT Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences condensed a billion years in an hour and did it very well. He referred to his new book “The Last Billion Years: A Geologic History of Tennessee” and it is an interesting- almost unbelievable story. I, Bob Scott, looked differently at the seemingly random quartz stones on Mount Leconte after listening to Dr. Byerly.

 
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Posted by on May 3, 2015 in News

 

Technical Society Programs for May 2015

May 4: Wrap-up of the April 30, 2015 working Breakfast at Rothchild’s and strategy discussion. The Technical Society is proposing that it take on a role as a coordinating society for the area technically oriented societies and this discussion will help point the way for the future of the society.

May 11: Dr. Al Hazari, UT “How to interest youth in science.” Dr Hazari is a showman and this should be an interesting program.

Dr. Al Hazari is Director of the Undergraduate Chemistry Labs at the University of Tennessee. Dr. Hazari’s quest to enhance science appreciation has included a regular schedule of public outreach activities ranging from classroom visits and teacher training workshops to special programs for teenage girls, Scouts, underprivileged children and senior citizens. His goal is to inspire students to become inquisitive about science instead of fearing or dreading it.

A native of Lebanon, he received a B. S. degree in Chemistry from the American University in Cairo in 1968. He holds an M.S. degree in Chemistry (1972) from Youngstown State University and a Ph. D. in Science Education (1997) from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Dr. Hazari is a very active American Chemical Society (ACS) member.

May 11 afternoon:

The Technical Society of Knoxville (TSK) www.technicalsociety.net  has organized a tour of  the new Knox County Career Magnet Academy in Strawberry Plains (http://knoxschools.org/careermagnet)  on May 11, 2015 from 4:45 to 5:30. Please let Walter Wunderlich know if you wish to participate so he can have a count for the tour (waltwunder@gmail.com).   Members of other area technical societies are invited as space allows.

The school is in the former Phillips/Magnavox building along with a branch of Pellissippi State and it is a unique educational establishment (7171 Strawberry Plains Pike, Knoxville, TN 37914).

May 18: Dr. Don Byerly, Professor Emeritus in the UT Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, will be the speaker. He has written a book entitled “The Last Billion Years: A Geologic History of Tennessee” Dr. Byerly is one of the country’s leading geologists in the study of the Appalachian Mountains. He taught at UT Knoxville for 43 years before retiring in 2000. He received his bachelor’s degree from the College of Wooster and a master’s degree

and doctorate from UT Knoxville. He has published numerous papers and reports dealing principally with engineering and environmental geology.

He is a founding member of the Tennessee Earth Science Teachers, he is the recipient of the 1999 Neil Minor Award from the National Association of Geoscience Teachers, the 1999 Tennessee Science Teachers Association’s Distinguished Service Award, and the Tennessee Conservation League’s 2000 Z. Carter Patten Award for distinctive service to the cause of conservation.

He and his wife were caught in the integration of the Clinton High School in 1956. She was a teacher in the school and he was a temporary deputy protecting the courthouse.

May 25: Memorial Day – no meeting

 

 
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Posted by on May 3, 2015 in Meetings