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RE: QUERY: What Are The Practical Benefits of Joining An "S.E.A.xx."?

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I will just add one more thought...actually more of a correction.  The
various state SEAs are NOT chapters of NCSEA.  While I am not sure how
SEAOSC, SEAONC, etc relate to SEAOC (I believe that they are the regional
or local chapters of SEAOC), I do know that the state SEAs are completely
independent organizations.  For example, SEAMi has no direct relation to
SEAOC other that by mutual cooperation, etc.  SEAMi is not a chapter of
NCSEA.  NCSEA is an organization of organizations.  I don't believe that
an individual can become a member of NCSEA.  The members of NCSEA are
actually the individual state SEA organizations.  NCSEA essentially
derives its "power" from the state SEAs.

So the end result is that the various SEAs like SEAMi, SEAW, SEAoT,
etc all have their own "rules of engagement" (i.e. constitution,
by-laws, power structure, politics, etc) and operate independently.
Those organizations just made the choice to come together in a joint
effort to provide a more unified and coordinated national presence,
which we call NCSEA.

Just thought that I would add that clarification.


On Wed, 24 Jan 2001, Structuralist wrote:

> Scott,
> I actually thought of joining another SEA chapter as I believed that they
> are independent. I decided against joining another chapter until I am able
> to see how the unification of SEA chapters in the NCSEA affects the
> organization as a whole.
> I do agree that chapters which are not as politically active in the creation
> of code for the IBC will have less political ambitions and may focus more on
> the needs of their local members.
> With that said, I still believe that SEA is not the only professional
> organization in need of members to help further their research and
> development of professional and industry standards. If you only have one
> check to offer, why would you feel any less a member of the profession by
> joining CSES, NSPE, ASCE or any of the other organizations.
> Interestingly enough, my dissatisfaction with SEA of California is much less
> with the local chapter than with the unified state chapter. While Southern
> California has historically adopted the philosophy that the organization
> should represent the members, the other chapters (San Diego, Central
> California and Northern California) have been unanimously opposed to
> Southern Chapter and have adopted the believe that SEA should "lead" the
> members. Therefore, in this case the unification of a state organization has
> overpowered the basic ideology of one chapter with the largest number of
> individual members. I am hoping that the same situation does not occur in
> the national unification of NCSEA.
> What may come as a shock is that I truly admire those who praise SEA as
> these are the active members who physically participate and have made
> contributions to the profession. In fact, if you understand the reason for
> my criticism of SEAOC, it become evident that I struggle so hard with it
> because it reflects my admiration of the profession and frustration as to
> the expedience of the organizations potential. The problem is that there is
> a resistant to change that originates not with the virtual community but
> with the physical community - especially if it means any potential for
> unproductive time to learn new skills. We can go on and on about this issue
> and it is best left to the archives, but until there is a realization of the
> productivity gains that can be achieved by use of virtual tools we will
> begin to fall further and further behind our potential and will go broke in
> the process.
> Dennis S. Wish, PE
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Scott Maxwell [mailto:smaxwell(--nospam--at)]
> Sent: Tuesday, January 23, 2001 8:29 PM
> To: seaint(--nospam--at)
> Subject: RE: QUERY: What Are The Practical Benefits of Joining An
> "S.E.A.xx."?
> Dennis,
> My only comment would be careful with the indiscriminate use of SEA.
> Even though your experience is only with SEAOC (and its siblings such
> as SEAOSC), you seem to lump all SEAs together.  I would stipulate that
> not all SEAs operate the same as SEAOC (or SEAOSC).  I have no experience
> dealing with SEAOC or SEAOSC, so I can't really comment on them.  I don't
> even have experience with SEAoT.  I can only really speak to my experience
> with SEAMi.  However, based upon my experience with SEAMi, I can tell you
> that not all SEAs would fit the description that you give.
> I think the advice that you gave about fully evaluating an organization
> and seeing if it fits your individual goals and needs is right on point.
> I just thought that it would be unfair cast SEAoT in the same light that
> you view SEAOC/SEAOSC.  It could be that SEAoT might be the perfect
> society for you (other than being way too far away from you phyically
> <grin>).
> Scott