We need an influx at the ASPE

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We Need an Influx at ASPE

by Cyndi Walker, American Society of Professional Estimators (ASPE), St. Louis Metro Chapter 19

When you were little, did you dream of being a cowboy, a doctor, an actress, a space man or – even more bizarre – a construction cost estimator? In my youth, nobody (most current estimators included) even knew of such a profession as “construction estimating.” Seems we all just stumbled into the job. Times have changed and stumbling into the profession is no longer an option.

The required skill sets and personal qualities needed to succeed in this profession have changed. Digital take-offs, ftp sites, uploads, downloads, BIM, sophisticated software programs, data bases — all are words unheard of when I began estimating. The days of looking at paper sets of plans with a measuring scale and a calculator are long gone. The future is here. The need for new blood is here, too.

How do we attract the younger generation to consider construction estimating as a career choice to prepare for instead of just blindly stumbling into it?

One reason – the potential for landing a job. Even though the economic downturn currently affects our industry, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook forecasts job growth for construction cost estimators at an increase of 36% by 2020 over the 2010 level.

Another reason – estimating is a “varied responsibilities” job that will keep a person interested for years. No project is ever the same. No construction team (architect, engineer, owner, subcontractors and suppliers) is ever the same. Collaborating with different groups of people to evaluate the costs and labor requirements of a particular project is stimulating.

The younger generation completely understands computers and all means of electronic gadgetry – the use of sophisticated software to calculate estimates is completely in their wheelhouse. But, in addition to relying on computers and technology, an estimator must have analytical, critical-thinking and communication skills to enable them to discuss complex design issues with a multitude of industry specialists, develop relationships with others in the industry, present and defend their estimates in a clear and concise way, help determine how to minimize cost without sacrificing the quality needed to meet the specifications and expectations for the project and develop scheduling for the duration of the project.

Most employers prefer college graduates. A bachelor’s degree in construction management is not the only degree that matters, though. Job applicants with degrees in accounting, mathematics and finance are also good candidates for estimating positions.

Back to the question – “How can you help get someone to consider estimating as a career?”

Meet with guidance counselors at high schools and colleges to ensure they understand all the job entails so they can advise their students.
1. Be a presence at “Job Fair” days at local schools.
2. Be a guest speaker at other organizations’ meetings.
3. Help tradesman who are interested in a career change learn how to be considered for the position.
4. Encourage your children, nieces, nephews and their friends to consider estimating.
I might not have dreamed of becoming an estimator, but I am very happy I have been one for many years. Help someone else realize the value of contributing to the industry of the building of buildings.

Join us at our next meeting at Ranken Technical College on March 22nd. Click here for more information.

Last Chance to Sign up for ASPE Trivia Night! Saturday 3/9

Trivia Night

Come test your Trivia skills on Saturday, March 9, 2019. Doors open at 6:00 pm and the game begins at 6:30 pm.

Event Location: The Edge of Webster, 359 Marshall Ave., Webster Groves, MO 63119

Tables of 8 are available at $200.00 or individuals may register for $25.00 each.

We will have beer, soda and water. Bring your own snacks and any of your own preferred adult beverages.

Mystery Grab Bags and Silent Auction items will be available.

Space is limited – register early through EventBrite or send check to Jim Stukenberg, 90 Sunfish Dr., Highland, IL 62249. Come have some fun and support our scholarship program.

Ticket sales end on Monday 3/4 at 10am.

Register for your place today! Space is limited!

ASPE Trivia Night is 3/9! Sign up today!

Trivia Night

Come test your Trivia skills on Saturday, March 9, 2019. Doors open at 6:00 pm and the game begins at 6:30 pm.

Event Location: The Edge of Webster, 359 Marshall Ave., Webster Groves, MO 63119

Tables of 8 are available at $200.00 or individuals may register for $25.00 each.

We will have beer, soda and water. Bring your own snacks and any of your own preferred adult beverages.

Mystery Grab Bags and Silent Auction items will be available.

Space is limited – register early through EventBrite or send check to Jim Stukenberg, 90 Sunfish Dr., Highland, IL 62249. Come have some fun and support our scholarship program.

Ticket sales end on Monday 3/4 at 10am.

Register for your place today! Space is limited!

Success with Good Faith Efforts Event

ASPE Full Logo with namegood faith efforts forum

Special thanks goes out to our guest speakers for helping make this such a special event!

We want to personally thank Amber Gooding of St. Louis Lambert Int’l Airport, Shonnah Parades of MSD, Vladimir Monroe – Director of Minority Business and Compliance, and Jack Thomas of St. Louis County for taking the time out of their busy schedules to help spread this important message to the construction community.

We want to thank Tom Finan and Dede Hance of Construct Forum STL for helping to promote the event and for everything that they do.

We want to thank the AGC for providing the space and services for this event on such short notice!

…and a many thanks goes to our members for helping get the word out and making this event such a success!

Over 60 showed up today!

Please join us for an evening of fun and charity fund raising for our scholarship fund on 3/9/19 – Click Here for more details…

Or Join us at our next meeting exploring Ranken and value it adds to the construction community of St. Louis on 3/22. More details soon.

– ASPE Chapter 19 Board President – John Smith

Upcoming ASPE Spring Events 2019

ASPE Full Logo with name

  • March 9, 2019 –  ASPE Trivia Night Scholarship Fundraiser

Location: The Edge of Webster

359 Marshall Ave., Webster Groves, MO 63119

Doors Open at 6:00 PM, Trivia starts at 6:30 PM

$200 / Table of Eight, Monetary Donations or Silent Auction Items appreciated if unable to attend

Click Here for more details

  • March 22, 2019 – Ranken Technical College

Location: 4431 Finney Ave., St. Louis, MO 63113

7:30 AM-9AM

  • April 26, 2019 – Bid Day Simulation led by Evan Chiles of Paric

Location: Murphy Company

1233 N Price Rd., St. Louis, MO 63132

7:30 AM – 10:00

  • May 18, 2019 – Night at the Horse Races

Location: Fairmount Park – The First Turn

9301 Collinsville Rd., Collinsville, IL 62234

Post Time 7:30 PM

  • Fall 2019 – Estimating Academy

 

More information to follow

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