SE University  



                      March 2017  
WELCOME to Learn, Innovate, Excel!  Our goal with this newsletter is to provide useful information and tips that will help you save time, be more productive, and also reduce risk. This information complements our SE University program, by introducing you to tips on a wide variety of topics affecting structural engineers.
If you have any tips you would like to share as part of a future Learn, Innovate, Excel newsletter, please email Lisa Willard or Brian Quinn

How much consideration have you given to the use of steel backing for welds in seismic applications on your recent structural design jobs?  Do you consider it more of a contractor's means and methods, or do you investigate each application to be sure it meets the requirements of AWS D1.1?

In the February 2017 SEU Core Session, Duane Miller, PE, from The Lincoln Electric Company, presented Welding Myths that Structural Engineers Need to Know About.  Duane covered a variety of topics that are often misunderstood by structural engineers in regard to the design and detail of welded connections.  As he pointed out, many of these myths have some roots in truth, but some are only partly true or can be completely false.

For example, Duane spoke about the myth that "Weld backing is simply a construction aid or part of the contractor's means and methods."  Although it is true that weld backing ...  read the full article and watch a short video at our SE University blog.


How many fillet welds do you specify on any given job?  Are you confident that you have a complete and thorough understanding of the intent behind the code provisions as they apply to the maximum size fillet weld allowed?  The use of fillet welds can get so repetitive and instinctive that we often specify them without thought to determining whether their design thickness aligns with the intent of the code provisions.

The eighth myth that Duane addressed states that 'Fillet Welds cannot be larger than the thickness of the steel on which they are placed,' or 'Fillet welds cannot be larger than 1/16" less than the thickness of the steel on which they are placed.'  These statements are rooted in truth, but cannot be applied universally ...  read the full article on our SE University blog.

Matthew Rechtien, PE, Esq.
Bodman Law, PLC
SE University began the SEU Speaker Inspires program in 2015 as a way to "pay it forward," enabling our speakers to designate a charity/organization of their choice for SE University to make a donation to help improve our world.

In January 2017, Matthew Rechtien, PE, Esq., a member of the law firm of Bodman PLC, presented A Case Study, and Legal Perspectives, on Engineering Ethics: The Kansas City Hyatt. He nominated the David and Maxine Fowler Endowed Excellence Fund at the University of Texas at Austin( for the SEU Speaker Inspires donation of the month.

Matthew shared why he chose the David and Maxine Fowler Endowed Excellence Fund: "Dr. Fowler, with the support of his wife, Maxine, has been a mentor, advocate, and friend for twenty years.  As a professor at the University of Texas for half a century, he has touched the lives of literally hundreds of other engineering students, engineers and others in a similar way.  Dr. Fowler is a gentleman and scholar in every sense of those words.  I am humbled to be able to contribute, in any way (but especially by, as he did, teaching my fellow engineers), to his legacy, including the David and Maxine Fowler Endowed Excellence Fund."

Duane Miller, PE
The Lincoln Electric Company
In February 2017, Duane Miller, PE, from the Lincoln Electric Company, presented Welding Myths that Structural Engineers Need to Know About. He nominated The City Mission in Cleveland ( for the SEU Speaker Inspires donation of the month.

Duane shared why he chose The City Mission: "An icon in the welding world, Mr. Omer W. Blodgett passed away in January 2017 at the age of 99. In his honor, his family has requested donations be made to the Cleveland City Mission, an organization that has for over a century provided help and hope to Cleveland's hurting and homeless; in his honor, I'd like this SEU donation to be made. Mr. Blodgett's was a longtime supporter of not only the Cleveland City Mission, but of similar organizations in other major cities throughout the US. To me, Mr. Blodgett was my mentor. In an unselfish way, he wanted me to "take over his work" and he showed me how to do so. I'll never replace him-no one will-but he taught me how to continue to do what he did. He was an exceptional engineer, a tremendous teacher and an consistent Christian, leaving a legacy and an example for all of us to model."

Thank you, Matthew and Duane, for helping structural engineers with your SE University sessions, and for your designations of the David and Maxine Fowler Endowed Excellence Fund at the University of Texas at Austin and The City Mission in Cleveland as SEU Speaker Inspires  Organizations!


As we enter the 2nd quarter of 2017, there are a number of states with upcoming license renewals. If additional hours are needed, please contact Lisa Willard to discuss how we can help you.

Engineers in the following states have license renewals due by June 30th  (bold states expire by
April 30th):

In the following states, engineers should renew their license by the specified date:

Kansas - Last Names M-Z (April 30th)
Oregon  - Last Names G-K  (June 30th)
Kentucky - Last Names A-K (June 30th) Utah (March 31st)
Louisiana - Some engineers (March 31st)
 West Virginia (June 30th)

In addition to the states listed above, there are other states that may require renewal based on your initial date of licensure or other rules for that state. Please check your license information to confirm your renewal dates.   
For more information about license renewal, please visit our Continuing Education Requirements by State page, where you can click on states in which you are licensed to see the license renewal date, as well as the continuing education requirements for that state. If you would like a complete summary of all 50 states, a PDF file is available for download below the map. This option can also be selected if you are viewing the page from a mobile device.
We hope that you find this information beneficial. If you have any questions, please contact Lisa Willard.


On March 29th we will be welcoming Betsy Werra, from E.L. Werra Consulting, LLC, to SE University to present SEU BIM Forum: Tips & Tricks in Revit Structure - 2D Drafting Details. This session will be held from 12:30 - 1:30 pm EDT.

During this SEU BIM Forum session, attendees will gain a better understanding of the depth and complexity of detail components and how they apply in Revit.  Various detail component families and options that have been built into different areas of the detail will be shown, along with a further exploration of the family detail editor.  This session will review creative ways to build details and different options and abilities Revit has to make detailing faster.
Some items that may be demonstrated include ways to add annotation to your detail families, repeat details by using Revit tools within the Project file as well as within a family file, and ways to increase productivit y by using detail components instead of using detail lines.  Additional items include creating a custom section cut, Grid and Centerline symbol, composite deck, coping beam, rebar representation, and more.

To learn more about subscribing to SE University, please contact either Lisa Willard at (805) 482-8436 ( or Brian Quinn at (616) 546-9420 (


On April 19th we will be welcoming Michelle Kam-Biron, PE, SE, SECB and Lori Koch, PE, from the American Wood Council, to SE University to present  National Design Specification® (NDS®) for Wood Construction - Significant Changes Including Cross-laminated Timber . This session will be held from 12:30 - 2:00 pm EDT.

AWC's National Design Specification® (NDS®) for Wood Construction 2015 is referenced in US building codes and used to design wood structures worldwide. Participants will learn about some of the significant changes in the 2015 NDS and Supplement relative to previous editions.  Design considerations related to fire-retardant treated and preservative treated wood, and connection design considerations will be highlighted.

New to the 2015 IBC and NDS is the inclusion of cross-laminated timber (CLT).  CLT is a wood product that has been used through the world for many years and is changing the way the building industry thinks of wood construction in North America.  

Also included in the session will be a discussion of mass timber, which, although not yet defined in the codes and standards, is a concept of how wood buildings are constructed to optimize the use of wood. 

Handouts and registration emails for this session will be sent to SE University companies on Friday, April 14th.

To learn more about subscribing to SE University, please contact either Lisa Willard at (805) 482-8436 ( or Brian Quinn at (616) 546-9420 (

Thank you for reading our Learn, Innovate, Excel Newsletter - we hope you found this information useful. If there are any questions we can answer, please do not hesitate to contact us by phone or email. 

Additionally, if you would be willing to help other structural engineers by sharing tips that you have, please email your tip to If we choose your tip to publish, you will have your choice of a $50 Amazon gift card or a $50 donation sent to the Structural Engineering Association of your choice. 

Your SE University Team

Brian Quinn, P.E. 

Lisa Willard, P.E. 

Jenny Schultz, P.E.

Cathleen Jacinto, S.E., P.E.

Linda Benson 

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Coming Soon to SE University



March 29, 2017
SEU BIM Forum: Tips and Tricks in Revit Structure - 2D Drafting Details
Betsy Werra
E.L.Werra Consulting, LLC

This session will be one hour

April 19, 2017
2015 National Design Specification® (NDS®) for Wood Construction - Significant Changes including Cross-laminated Timber
Michelle Kam-Biron, PE, SE, SECB and 
Lori Koch, PE
American Wood Council

Date Change from April 12

May 10, 2017
The Chevron Effect - Not an Isolated Problem
Patrick Fortney, PhD, PE, SE, P.Eng.

May 24, 2017
SEU BIM Forum: Tips and Tricks in Revit Structure - 3D Sections & Details
Betsy Werra
E.L.Werra Consulting, LLC

This session will be one hour

June 14, 2017
Buckling Restrained Braced Frames
Kimberley Robinson, PE, SE
SunSteel, LLC

July 12, 2017
Moment Frames - Design and Detailing per the AISC 341/358
Matt Mester, SE
Sideplate Systems

August 9, 2017
SE University Core Session
Speaker: TBD

September 13, 2017
IBC 2012/2015 & ACI 318-11/14 Design Considerations Associated with Post-Installed Adhesive Anchor Products
Kevin Davenport, PE
Simpson Strong-Tie

For updated session descriptions and schedules, visit the SCHEDULE page.