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E-Splash February 2014 - Education Committee
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Illinois Section AWWA - E-Splash -  February 2014

Education Committee
Jeff Freeman, Chair

Greetings from the Education Committee and Happy 2014! WATERCON will be here before you know it, and spring is right around the corner. Your Education Committee is continuing our efforts to offer high quality education opportunities for the membership.

By now you should have seen our 2014 training booklet. We have included training opportunities for the entire year within this publication. Please note the Training portion of the Section’s website is updated constantly. In some cases there will be training sessions listed on the website that were not in training booklet, so for the most up-to-date list of training opportunities, please visit:

Hopefully, you have already participated in some of the training sessions, and/or are signed up for an upcoming one. We continue to offer training in many different formats, so that you can find training sessions that can fit into your busy schedule. For instance, we have programmed or provided access to night classes, home study programs, programs for aspiring operators, live webinars, online courses and in-person seminars. We also continue to build the Association’s library of videos/DVDs and webinars on demand.

Our webinars will continue to be free for ISAWWA members in 2014. They are typically scheduled around lunch time in an effort to minimize the disruption to the workday. If you have not already done so, you may want to look into participating in one. After all, you cannot beat the price of admission!

I am pleased to report the Education Committee has put together another educational and thought- provoking Operator Track for WATERCON 2014. The theme for this year’s Operator Track is This Old House. The presentations within the track will focus on water systems that have recently expanded or upgraded their water facilities. Most presentations will include multiple presenters who can talk about the project from several different perspectives. For instance, we will have owners, operators and engineers talking about their project’s old house. Thank you to the presenters who have agreed to prepare presentations and to share their experiences. In this time with limited growth and limited budgets, facility rehabilitations, rather than new facilities, are being planned and executed. Please note we also are working with the Small Systems Committee to fill out the panel for the Meet the IEPA Staff session first thing in the morning on Tuesday.

The Education Committee has also put together a Stretch Your Education track for WATERCON 2014. This year marks the pilot year for the program. We think it will be a big hit, but we will be extremely interested to obtain feedback from the participants in the program as well as folks who considered participating but chose not to. Participants in the Stretch Your Education track will visit four exhibitor booths within the exhibit hall over a one-hour period. The 15-minute stop at each booth will include an educational session on a topic, process or piece of equipment. Participants will receive one (1) CEU for their attendance at all four booths. Presenters and participants will need to sign up for this track prior to the conference. If you are interested in signing up, please go to the Section’s website soon. A big thank you goes out to Bill Balluff for taking the leadership reins on developing this program.

In addition to developing educational tracks, the Education Committee is working out the details for our booth at WATERCON 2014. Please be sure to stop by our booth and say hi, see what we are up to with our committee, and test your water knowledge with the potential of being entered in a drawing to win a door prize! The fantastic Terry McGhee has come up with another version of his Water Jeopardy (V2.0). Thank you, Terry! For all existing Committee members, and all those who have an interest in joining, we will be holding a Committee meeting at WATERCON 2014 on Tuesday, March 18th at 4:00 p.m. Please come and join us for the discussion. We are always looking for new folks who can bring additional ideas to the Committee.

Lastly, Education Committee members are participating in the Section’s Strategic Plan Implementation Team ad hoc committee. One of the first orders of business for this Committee is to determine how our educational program will meet our Section’s mission to provide total water solutions. We have been seeking input from the membership, and will continue to seek your input, to determine how we can best meet your total water educational needs. If you have specific ideas on how the Education Committee can meet your total water education needs, please be sure to pass them along.

Please remember we are always looking for training session ideas. If you are interested in presenting a topic, or there is a topic that you would really like to learn about, please contact Lisa Hoffhines and let her know your thoughts. Lisa’s e-mail address is Please recall the many different formats of our education program. We can program one hour webinars, three to five hour in-person seminars, up to multi-week classes. If you ever have any comments or questions about the Education Committee and/or education program, please feel free to contact me at or 630-466-6700.

See you at WATERCON 2014!


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