Illustration of the coronavirusBY C. KEVIN FLEMING, PE, FBPE Chair (2021)

The COVID-19 coronavirus is still a topic that cannot be ignored in conversation, media, or daily activities. I don’t know of anyone who has not been touched by this virus, and pray that those of you reading this newsletter are well and continue to be so.

Florida has, by all accounts, navigated through the pandemic better than many places. The state’s active cases and mortality rates continue to fall, even as we enter the busy summer season. Our vaccine availability is arguably the best in country, and most state restrictions have been lifted. This bodes well for the state economy and for opportunities for the state’s engineering community

Your Board will welcome four new appointees at the July meeting. They are Mr. Jeb Mulock, PE, of Bradenton, Ms. Yassi Myers, PE, of Windemere, Mr. John Pistorino, PE, of Pinecrest, and Ms. Denise Ramsey, PE, of Jacksonville. Four currently serving members — Dylan Albergo, P.J. Shah, Babu Varghese, and myself — were also re-appointed by Gov. Ron DeSantis.

The Board and the FEMC staff are excited about the new appointments, and look forward to the thoughts and ideas the new members will bring.

One function of your Board that is continuous is improvement and updates to Rule 61G15, Florida Administrative Code. As part of the required 18 hours of continuing education, Florida licensees must complete one hour of continuing study on our laws and rules as a minimum. I would suggest that licensees consider taking more than that one hour to be knowledgeable on your responsibilities as a Florida licensee and to stay abreast with updates that routinely take place. The FBPE website is a great place to find the latest information on rules and rulemaking, as is the Florida Administrative Register website.

Did you know that the Rules Committee of the Florida Board meets regularly, and that its meetings are open to the public? Licensees are welcomed and encouraged to observe those meetings. If you have relevant commentary please feel free to contact the FEMC staff in order to make your message heard.

Meetings for the Board of Professional Engineers are still held virtually and will be for the near term, so no travel is required! Virtual meetings provide a great opportunity to observe and participate. Love ’em or hate ’em, virtual meetings will probably be part of our professional lives from now on. Expect your Board to use the web for committee and workshop meetings as the new normal.

News about NCEES — the National Council of Examiners for Engineers and Surveyors — has announced that its 2021 Annual Meeting will be in-person and will be held Aug. 18-21 in New Orleans. Attendance will be limited to three members or representatives from each member council. This will be the first in-person meeting of the body since August 2019. Your Board will be in attendance. Look for an article on the proceedings of the annual meeting in the October newsletter.

Shameless plug: The Career Center at FSU wants to connect employers with FSU College of Engineering students this fall through in-person career fairs, virtual career fairs, and other free networking and mentoring events. Learn more about these fairs and services on the Career Center website.

I personally wish each of you a safe and happy summer.

About the Author

C. Kevin Fleming, PE, of Tallahassee, is vice president of McGinniss and Fleming Engineering and was the 2021 chair of the Florida Board of Professional Engineers. He is a member of the National Council of Examiners for Engineers and Surveyors. Mr. Fleming earned his bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from Florida State University.