TMG Hosts Career Day with Middle-School Scholars

TMG Consulting recently hosted a team of 8th-grade students from our Mid-City neighbor John Dibert Community School.  Like many of us at their age, the students did not have a clear idea of what they wanted to do when they grow up. Some expressed interest in becoming athletes, musicians, or theatrical performers, seemingly influenced by what they see in the media.

We spent the morning exploring how the fields of engineering and urban planning were woven into the fabric of their daily life activities – from electrical engineers designing cellular phone communication towers to urban planners creating new streetcar routes.

Students learning about the fields of engineering, urban planning, architecture and construction.

Students learning about the fields of engineering, urban planning, architecture and construction.

Students learning about the fields of engineering, urban planning, architecture and construction.

Students learning about the fields of engineering, urban planning, architecture and construction.

With basic tools like a map of New Orleans, colored pencils, and markers, the students programmed their own streetcar routes based on their own points of interests.

One student living on the West Bank proposed creating a streetcar route from his house to school in Mid-City.  The proposed concept required a new trans-Mississippi bridge and significant track infrastructure.  This allowed for a discussion of planning priorities and the challenge of deploying needed services when faced with limited resources, like funding. The team considered how this new route would significantly benefit the larger community.

The students then collectively created a streetcar route to service 30 miles – approximately $600 million of investment in the New Orleans built environment. This then pushed our young urban planners to leverage existing routes to make the most of their allocated miles. They presented their proposed routes to their “client,” our own Mr. Chapman, with flying colors!

The next generation of urban planners designs new streetcar routes.

The next generation of urban planners designs new streetcar routes.

The next generation of urban planners designs new streetcar routes.

The next generation of urban planners designs new streetcar routes.

TMG enjoyed sharing our passion for engineering and urban planning with these students to create a more vibrant city. We had great fun working with these young scholars and shaping the career aspirations of the next generation.

Contributed by:

Mimi Tsai

Feasibility Analyst

mimitsai@tmg-consulting.net  

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Disclaimer
The views, interpretations, or strategies expressed are those of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect the position of TMG Consulting. This site is meant for educational purposes only and does not constitute professional advice. TMG Consulting makes no representation as to accuracy, completeness, or suitability of any information on this site and will not be liable for damages arising from its display or use.

Practice Highlight: Engineering Economics

Given  the current economic climate and a focus on project impacts, engineers are challenged to go beyond solid, functional design work and enter the realm of economics to prove that a given project will bring real and tangible benefits. Engineering economics is the application of economic methods and models to project evaluation. This evaluation could include:

  1. Overall worthiness of a project in terms of return-on-investment
  2. Benefits and costs of design, construction, implementation and operation of the project
  3. Alternatives analysis for project financing
  4. Impacts of projects in terms of jobs, income & taxes on a geographical area or governmental unit
  5. Life cycle cost analysis

Measurements of some costs are relatively easy; e.g. design and construction cost. Establishing the value of driving time saved for a highway widening project or the value of a human life for a safety enhancement project  requires more expertise. Implementation costs are usually one-time, while operating costs and benefits are computed on an annual basis and translated to present value. Finally, incorporating uncertainty in project impacts can complicate the project evaluation.

Benefit-cost analyses have been completed by TMG Consulting for Richmond International, Mobile, Houma, and Louis Armstrong New Orleans International airports. TMG Consulting has completed impact studies for numerous private and  public clients in locales such as Missouri, Louisiana, Delaware, Massachusetts, and Florida, helping them to reach their development project goals.

Nowadays, many engineering projects require the use of engineering economics in project evaluation, a discipline in which TMG Consulting has long standing experience and expertise.

Disclaimer
The views, interpretations, or strategies expressed are those of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect the position of TMG Consulting. This site is meant for educational purposes only and does not constitute professional advice. TMG Consulting makes no representation as to accuracy, completeness, or suitability of any information on this site and will not be liable for damages arising from its display or use.

TMG Principal Mumphrey Elected President of ACEC/L

In July, Dr. Anthony Mumphrey became President of the American Council of Engineering Companies of Louisiana (ACEC/L). The Council’s mission is to contribute to America’s prosperity and welfare by advancing the business interests of member firms. ACEC/L exists to assist principals and managers of member firms in developing successful practices. Approximately 140 Louisiana engineering firms are members of ACEC/L with over 5,000 firms belonging to the national federation. Mumphrey has served ACEC/L as a member of its Board of Directors for many years and helped the organization survive and stabilize after Hurricane Katrina. Upon his election, Dr. Mumphrey commented, “becoming president is a nice honor, but much work is needed in helping firms navigate the complex political and business environments that exist currently.”

Dr. Anthony Mumphrey is the founder and President of TMG Consulting, and will serve as President of ACEC/L through July 2012.

Disclaimer
The views, interpretations, or strategies expressed are those of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect the position of TMG Consulting. This site is meant for educational purposes only and does not constitute professional advice. TMG Consulting makes no representation as to accuracy, completeness, or suitability of any information on this site and will not be liable for damages arising from its display or use.