2006 pervious concrete symposium

The National Ready Mixed Concrete Association (NRMCA) plans to initiate an annual series of Concrete Technology Forums that will cover topical subjects for practitioners and users. Based on strong industry interest, the first topic will be Focus on Pervious Concrete, scheduled for May 24–25, 2006, in Nashville. The forum will bring researchers and practitioners together to discuss the latest advances, technical knowledge, continuing research, tools, and solutions emerging in a concrete construction industry characterized by rapid growth and innovation.

Pervious concrete is a performance-engineered concrete with a 15-30% void system that allows rainwater to percolate through it. Although pervious concrete has been used in some areas for decades, recent interest in green building and recognition by the U.S. EPA as a best practice for stormwater management have heightened interest in its use throughout North America.

As part of planning, NRMCA is calling for papers and presentations. To submit an abstract visit www.ConcreteTechnologyForum.org.

Hanley Wood sponsors for the 2006 Concrete Technology Forum include Concrete Construction, The Concrete Producer and Public Works magazines. Degussa Admixtures and SI Concrete Systems are also sponsors.

Raising $4 million for education

Concrete construction industry leaders from across the United States and Canada met recently to ensure the vitality of the concrete industry and raise over $4 million to establish programs at select universities to recruit and train qualified individuals to meet the growing need for educated managerial candidates. The objective of the meeting was to enlist financial underwriting, both national and local, and create a broad based industry support coalition.

A more educated workforce is a major undertaking for the construction industry—the world's largest industry—which employs 6.9 million people. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) estimates that between the years 2002 and 2012, the United States will need approximately one million skilled workers to fill construction jobs. The concrete industry, as a supplier to the construction industry, faces similar challenges but is taking aggressive steps to meet the challenge by educating tomorrow's concrete professionals.

To combat the anticipated shortage, a team of concrete industry leaders has created the Concrete Industry Management Program (CIM), an undergraduate management degree that teaches students how to excel in the concrete construction industry.

The program began at Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU) in September 1996 with only a handful of students and a single graduate in 2000. Today, the program has some 300 individuals enrolled, and more than 80 students will graduate this year.

The National Steering Committee, in conjunction with local industry patrons groups, plans to duplicate CIM's success at strategically selected universities. A second CIM-sponsored and funded program is just beginning at Arizona State University's Del E. Webb School of Construction. Two additional programs are scheduled to begin in 2006 at the New Jersey Institute of Technology and California State University at Chico. It takes approximately $1 million over five years to fund each new startup CIM program. Half of the funding will be raised through local efforts and the other 50% through the National Steering Committee campaign.

The National Steering Committee plans to host a press conference at the 2006 World of Concrete on Thursday, January 19, 2006, in Las Vegas to detail the success of their expansion efforts.

For additional information, contact Janice Tucciarone at 216-839-7016 or via email at Janice.tucciarone@degussa.com.