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RE: A Farewell to Structural Engineering

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Bill,
 
You were a great poster. History has been my favourite subject too, but alas, in my position with children geting ready for college, I cannot go without work.
 
As for having no work, all of us are in the same sinking boat. I'd rather we drew lots than someone like you jumping out. Hope we see you out of the whale's belly in not too distant a future.
 
Best wishes.
 
Syed Masroor
Karachi, Pakistan
 
> From: h.d.richardson(--nospam--at)shaw.ca
> To: seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org
> Subject: Re: A Farewell to Structural Engineering
> Date: Tue, 23 Nov 2010 17:47:43 -0700
>
> Bill,
>
> Once upon a time I decided to do the same thing. Engineering had
> lost its luster. There had to be something better!
>
> I went back to university and took an MBA degree, by night school of
> course because I couldn't afford to give up my income for the duration. In
> the process of getting the degree and in seeking related employment
> afterward I learned several things the three most important being:
> 1.) I gained a better perspective of the role of engineering in society. Or
> perhaps putting it differently, I got a better view of the society that
> exists outside of engineering.
> 2.) Entry level positions in business pay less than in engineering. Not
> only that, I don't even ;like the work that has to be done AND I'm not very
> good at it.
> 3.) I actually like being an engineer and I think I'm good at that. All I
> really needed was an attitude adjustment.
>
> I guess I can sum it up by paraphrasing a decades old joke about
> European immigrants to America and the streets being paved with gold. In my
> case the grass not greener on the other side of the fence; in fact, there
> wasn't any grass on the other side of the fence; furthermore, I would be
> expected to plant and water the grass.
>
> Bill, If you think you want a change, go for it. You'll be second
> guessing yourself for years if you don't. Just don't give up your
> engineering license; it'll be much to hard to get it back if you do. You
> are a good structural engineer. I've been reading your posts for more than a
> decade and I can attest to that as can many others on the list.
>
> You have my best wishes for whatever you decide.
>
> Regards,
>
> H. Daryl Richardson
>
> ----- From: "Bill Polhemus" <bill(--nospam--at)polhemus.cc>
> To: <seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org>
> Sent: Tuesday, November 23, 2010 2:46 PM
> Subject: A Farewell to Structural Engineering
>
>
> > Hello, SEAINTers. Long time since I've checked in personally.
> >
> > I am now going on the sixth month of my current spate of unemployment. The
> > phone does not ring. Such employment openings as I do see advertised, are
> > for entry-level positions, or require expertise that I do not have (such
> > as offshore platform design).
> >
> > I have also been struggling, not entirely coincidentally, with one of the
> > worst bouts of depression with which I've ever had the misfortune to deal.
> > No one's fault, really; it is what it is. But it has forced me into
> > self-examination at an uncomfortable level.
> >
> > I haven't been happy or fulfilled as an engineer in years. I think the
> > profession and I simply grew apart. If you are not a world-class expert -
> > as I am not - in any particular subfield, you must perforce be content
> > with "management" or some-such. And I am not that either.
> >
> > I have made up my mind to drop out altogether. In fact, I am changing
> > course radically - something I probably should have done years ago but was
> > too caught up in the practicalities of earning a living to realize it.
> >
> > I have decided to apply to graduate school with the aim of earning a Ph.D.
> > in History, and remain in academia for the remainder of my life. It's not
> > exactly entering the monastery, but it's almost as radical a departure. I
> > have always been fascinated with all aspects of history - especially that
> > of engineering and technological progress. I will probably focus on that,
> > perhaps even civil and structural engineering history. Wouldn't that be
> > something.
> >
> > At any rate, I just felt it incumbent upon me to write a brief swansong in
> > this vein. Not that I expect any of you to really care, but it might be of
> > interest to one or two, and so it would serve a purpose.
> >
> > Thank you all for services rendered in the fifteen-plus years that I've
> > participated on this forum, and I wish all of you the very best of good
> > luck in all you do.
> >
> > William L. Polhemus, P.E.
> > Katy, Texas
> >
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