Compiled By CHRISTINE COTTRELL
MAJ. MARK MCMULLINS, P.ENG. . . .fly first, drive later.
When Maj. Mark McCullins, P.Eng., was growing up, he always wanted to be an astronaut — drawings on the fridge door attested to that. In fact he earned his pilot’s licence at 16, before even passing his driver’s test.
Now Maj. McCullins is another step closer to his goal. He’s been selected as one of 16 candidates from a pool of 5,351 to undergo a series of interviews and rigorous testing over the next couple of months. The outcome? Two candidates will be selected to join the Canadian Astronaut Corps.
Currently Maj. McCullins is a CC130 pilot at 8 Wing Trenton, Ont., for the Aerospace Engineering & Test Establishment. This new opportunity would combine his love of flying with his childhood dream.
Maj. McCullins has a B.Eng. in chemical and materials engineering from the Royal Military College of Canada. While stationed at CFB Cold Lake in 2006, he became a member of APEGGA, reading his Professional Member Oath during an induction ceremony at a Council dinner the same year.
Support from the Association and mentors has been crucial to Maj. McCullins, influences he says are important to all young professionals.
This summer Maj. McCullins will be the officer responsible for the operational test, evaluation and implementation into service of the new C-130J Hercules.
Traffic jams seem to lead nowhere slowly, but Brian Fleck, P.Eng., knows that isn’t always the case. Gridlocked one day on an Edmonton street, he daydreamed about the future of cars, and that’s taken him all the way to hosting an episode of the long-running show The Nature of Things on CBC-TV.
Looking for ways to change the automobile culture, Dr. Fleck, a University of Alberta professor, consulted other forward thinkers and then pitched an idea to CBC executives. Before he knew it, cameras rolled as Dr. Fleck test drove a myriad of vehicles using alternative engines and fuels.
During the hectic 20-day shoot that took him to Turin, Italy, coastal California and elsewhere, Dr. Fleck learned about hybrids, hydrogen fuel-celled cars and much more. He even experienced the pleasure of driving a 300-horsepower, Detroit-made muscle car.
In an article on the University of Alberta website, Dr. Fleck said: “Electric cars can compete with gas and diesel; the only barrier is setting up the grid for re-charging millions of these vehicles.”
The most unusual car profiled in the show is an electric still on the drawing board. It’s a tiny, two-seater that folds up when not in use. In parking lots, each car would slip into the vehicle parked in front of it in a reserved area, just as shopping carts do now.
Permit Holders Recognized
For Aboriginal Relations
Syncrude Canada Ltd. and Alberta Pacific Forest Industries Inc. have been recognized in the Progressive Aboriginal Relations program of the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business. Both were re-accredited at the gold level.
For Syncrude, this is the fourth time to earn gold. The company is one of only 11 to hold that distinction.
The award recognizes commitment in Aboriginal relations, employment and other areas.
Students Hope Mickey and Minnie Love Their Invention
Young inventors from Alberta hope their Handheld Disney Adventure Guide will tickle the imaginations of Disney engineers enough that they want to know more. The guide is the work of teammates Talal Sadek and Partap Rehill of the Schulich School of Engineering and Andrea McKenzie and Vanessa Lau of the University of Alberta, all university student members of APEGGA.
The group, contestants in the ImagiNations Design Competition sponsored by Walt Disney Imagineering, created an interactive handheld device to entertain visitors, taking them on a virtual adventure of the Disney theme park while they wait in line for attractions.
The goal of the competition is to expand students’ academic knowledge by getting them to think in non-traditional ways. Judges will review each entry and select 10 teams to present their projects in California.
Holds Up For Scholarship
Teamwork and hours of research, planning and construction have paid off for civil engineering students Lyle Boudreau and Arvid Anvik. The university student members of APEGGA won a Cohos Evamy integratedesign scholarship in an engineering competition to build a small-scale bridge.
In the competition, teams of third- and fourth-year students from the Schulich School of Engineering consider safety, economy, utility and esthetics while creating a bridge capable of withstanding a load of about 40 kg. Their winning entry held about 42 kg before it collapsed.
The students receive $4,000 to split.
Gerald Carson, P.Eng., principal of Cohos Evamy, presented the scholarship to the winners. Cohos Evamy is a long-time supporter of the Schulich School of Engineering, and a regular provider of scholarships and endowments to the University of Calgary.
CEA Honours Rising Star
ANITA SELINGER, P.ENG. …professional on the rise.
Since the beginning of her young career, Anita Selinger, P.Eng., has been given increasing responsibility on her projects. Already considered an expert in water and wastewater treatment, the Calgary resident’s resumé includes the water treatment plant in the Town of Raymond.
Now Ms. Selinger is also the 2009 — and inaugural — recipient of the Consulting Engineers of Alberta Rising Young Professional Award.
Armed with a chemical engineering degree from the University of Calgary, she started working for Associated Engineering five years ago. Ms. Selinger co-founded a group for young professionals at the company and also participates in its mentoring program.
Ms. Selinger was among a long list of professionals and consulting companies honoured Feb. 13 at the 2009 CEA Showcase Awards in Edmonton. Visit www.cea.ca for more information.
Masonry Systems Chair
Shores Up For Challenge
Can masonry return to the forefront of construction? Making that happen is the task assigned Dr. Yasser Korany, P.Eng., the first appointee of the Masonry Contractors Association of Alberta Northern Region Chair in Masonry Systems.
“There are no limitations to designing with masonry; the only limitations are in our minds,” Dr. Korany said during a special luncheon in his honour at the University of Alberta. The $3-million chair is based at the U of A.
MCAA North is challenging the next generation of engineers to design new masonry systems and materials for industry use, citing the pyramids as a good example of ancient masonry structures and design.
SPEE Elects Executive
The Society of Petroleum Evaluation Engineers has elected Barry Ashton, P.Eng., of Calgary as its secretary-treasurer. Frank Molyneux, P.Eng., of Calgary becomes past-president.
SPEE is a not-for-profit professional association formed in 1962 to bring together specialists in the evaluation of petroleum properties. There are fewer than 100 full members in Canada, most of them in Calgary.
Mr. Ashton is an author of a portion of the core document for oil-and-gas practice in Canada, Canadian Oil and Gas Evaluation Handbook.
Mr. Molyneux said in a recent media release: “The experience and qualifications of the incoming board of directors of SPEE guarantees our society will continue its 47-year history of leadership in the areas of professional ethics and oil-and-gas evaluation sciences.”
Research Chair Inducted as Fellow in Royal Society
DR. LEO BEHIE, P.ENG. . . .top academic honour.
Dr. Leo Behie, P.Eng., was formally inducted as a fellow in the Academy of Science of the Royal Society of Canada, at a recent ceremony in Ottawa. Dr. Behie is the Canada Research Chair in Biomedical Engineering at the Schulich School of Engineering.
Dr. Behie has received several awards of excellence, including an APEGGA Summit Award — the 1999 Frank Spragins Technical Award.
Election to the society is the highest academic honour for scientists and scholars.