INCOSE Knowledge Exam

The International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE) has established a multi-level Systems Engineering Professional (SEP) Certification Program to provide a formal method for recognizing the knowledge and experience of systems engineers, regardless of where they may be in their career.  The INCOSE International Certification Program felt with the potentially looming government shutdown, there was an opportunity for companies and individuals to spend a little time on personal development, training, and INCOSE Certification. This would be a high leverage activity for all organizations and staffs that are looking to improve their Systems Engineering credentials.  So for a limited time the Certification Program Office offered INCOSE Chapters, who provide a testing location and a proctor, the opportunity to host a free INCOSE knowledge exam to all who are interested in gaining an ASEP or CSEP Certification.  

Spearheaded by Karl Geist (Pictured) Chapter Treasurer, the INCOSE SoMD Chapter took advantage of the opportunity and hosted a Beta Exam on Saturday, 10 February 2018 at 9 am at KBRwyle in Lexington Park, MD. The INCOSE SE Handbook version 4 was the basis used for all questions on the exam. No studying was required prior to taking this free exam, but some preparation was encouraged and recommended. The event was a free 150-item (2.5-hr) paper exam, and candidates who passed would also have their $150 application fee waived, if they apply within 3 months of receiving successful exam results. The SoMD Chapter advertised the event for two weeks on the SoMD Chapter Website, INCOSE International’s Website, the Americas Chapters Website, and additionally sent flyers to the surrounding INCOSE Sister Chapters soliciting participation. The Chapter received over a dozen inquiries about the exam, and had seven people register to take the test with representation from both the SoMD Chapter (Lyndsay Daniels pictured) and the Central VA Chapter (Laurence Thayer pictured).  Karl served as Proctor and Exam Coordinator with over 40 years of Acquisition experience developing Tactical Systems for the Navy. Karl is also one of the original founders of INCOSE Certification Program, and has been certified since 2004. Karl also served 6 years on INCOSE Certification Advisory Group (CAG), and helped write and stage a number of the INCOSE Certification Beta Exams.

Overall, the exam went very well. The SoMD Chapter provided the candidates a free continental and snacks. They were served danish, homemade chocolate chocolate-chip muffins, breakfast fruit bars, fresh fruit salad (Grapes, Cantaloupe, Strawberries and Blackberries), coffee, orange juice, soda, and water. The Chapter also incorporated a 15-minute bathroom for the Candidates, so as to not interfere with their exam time. Currently our SoMD Chapter has 49 members, with 20 members holding some level of INCOSE Certification. That’s 40.8% of our members. We’re hoping to increase that percentage with the exam results.  (The accompanying pictures were taken at exam for publicity.)  

Report From 2018 St. Mary’s Science and Engineering Fair

Great Mills High School again hosted the 2018 St. Mary’s County Science & Engineering Fair for the Middle and High Schools, which was held on Saturday, January 27, 2018, from 7:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. The INCOSE SoMD Chapter solicited volunteers to act as INCOSE Judges for the Competition to review the 86 Middle and High School projects presented at the Fair. Karl Geist and Greg Olson answered the call to act as Competition Judges. They down selected the projects for the Junior division to the top 5 projects, and for the Senior division to the top 7 projects, then interviewed those 12 projects for individual scoring to determine the top projects in each division to award the prize money. In the Junior division representing Spring Ridge Middle School were project #J-2001 titled O.R.C.A. (Ocean Robot Collecting Aggregates) by Jared Republica, which won Second place, and #J-2002 titled Vacation Irrigation by Tom Wilson, which won First place. In the Senior division representing Leonardtown High Schools, were project #S-1004 titled D.R.O.P by Timothy Stinger, which  was awarded Second place, and project #S-0502 titled Prescripted Code by John Podsednik, Kyra Pratley, and William Voorhees, which took top honors. Karl Geist, Chapter Treasurer presented the cash awards at the Awards Ceremony following the competition. All these INCOSE Award winners along with the winners of The Patuxent Partnership awards, will also be recognized at a reception co-hosted by The Patuxent Partnership and the INCOSE SoMD Chapter on Tuesday, February 20th from 5:00pm – 6:30pm at Great Mills High School, 21130 Great Mills Road, Great Mills MD 20634. Everyone in the chapter is invited.

John Podsednik, Kyra Pratley, and William Voorhees won INCOSE first in Senior Division with there project Prescripted Code

Timothy Stinger won INCOSE 2nd Place in the Senior Division with his project D.R.O.P

Tom Wilson from Spring Ridge Middle school won INCOSE’s First Place in the Junior Division with his project Vacation Irrigation

 

Jared Republica from Spring Ridge Middle Schoo won the INCOSE Junior Second Place with his project O.R.C.A. (Ocean Robot Collecting Aggregates)

Call for Support for 2018 INCOSE Southern Maryland Chapter Events

International Certification Program

First, the INCOSE International Certification Program feels with the government shutdown, there is as an opportunity for companies and individuals to spend a little time on personal development, training, and INCOSE Certification. They are planning to offer a free INCOSE knowledge exam to all who are interested. They plan that it could be held sometime between January 26 and February 3. They also feel this would be a welcome activity for organizations that will have folks working on overhead, anyway. No studying is required prior to taking this free exam, though it is encouraged. The suggestion is to host a few 150-item paper exams, scheduled just one to two weeks in advance. Along with this extended (2.5-hr) exam, candidates who pass will have their ASEP application fee waived, if they apply within 3 months of receiving exam results. That means that all current INCOSE members could get their ASEP for free, and non-members could get their ASEP just by joining INCOSE. No exam fee ($80) and no application fee ($150) as a limited time offer! Usually the exam is 120-item (2-hr) and does not waive the application fee. They are offering this opportunity to only the SoMD, WMA, and Chesapeake chapters, but we need to identify a location. Karl Geist is willing to act as proctor, since he is an ESEP and has proctored 4 other Certification Exams. They plan to set an exam date before 5 February, and create a website for registration. Chapters would then advertise it! This is a new idea and requires an immediate response. INCOSE is also hoping to offer other training activities during the next week or two. Please let Karl Geist know ASAP if you’re interested.

2018 St. Mary’s County Science & Engineering Fair

Call for Judges for the 2018 St. Mary’s County Science & Engineering Fair for the Middle and High Schools to be held on Saturday, January 27, 2018, from 7:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. at Great Mills High School. The Chapter is looking for Volunteers to act as INCOSE Judges for the Competition to review approximately 125 total projects between the Middle and High Schools. The Judges will down select to the top 5 – 6 projects in each division and interview those projects for individual scoring to determine the top 3 in each division for awarding prize money. Winners will also be recognized at a reception co-hosted by The Patuxent Partnership and INCOSE SoMD Chapter sometime in March.

Christmas in April (CIA)
For the last several years, our Chapter has participated in the St. Mary’s County Christmas In April program by providing volunteers to help refurbish local homes of the less fortunate. We are again planning to participate on Saturday 28 April, so we are in need of volunteers to help with this project. We normally make minor repairs to the inside and outside of the homes. Tasking may include jobs like Removing & installing flooring; Painting the interior ceiling & walls; Repairing some electrical; Doing weather stripping; Repairing & caulking windows; Painting exterior trim, eves, windows, & doors; and Performing some landscaping and clean-up. We provide our own tools, but CIA will provide all the materials.

AUVSI Competition

The SoMD INCOSE Chapter has a long 16-year history of providing support to the Association of Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) Student Unmanned Aerial Systems (SUAS) Competitions. We are looking for Volunteers to be Competition Judges, Registration Personnel, and Servers for the Reception. This year’s (2018) competition support will start in May if you volunteer as a Judge to review Competition Journal Papers. Then on Wednesday 13 June, we will also need volunteers to support Competition Set-up, Registration, and the Reception. If you wish to continue judging the competition, on June 14th, 15th, and 16th (Thursday, Friday, Saturday) a total of 60ish international and domestic teams will compete presenting project briefs and flying their UAVs in competition.

Please consider supporting or volunteering for any or all these activities. If you have questions or plan to volunteer, please contact Karl Geist at kgeist@md.metrocast.net or 301-247-7670.

Our Chapter 2017 Science Fair Winners

On Saturday 21 January 2017, INCOSE SoMD Chapter participated in the organization and judging for the thirteenth consecutive year of the St. Mary’s County Science and Engineering Fair. In addition to Planning and Sponsoring the Fair by John Walker, SoMD Chapter Director, Karl Geist, Chapter Treasurer led a three person team by reviewing the 129 projects, selecting 6 winners, and presenting the Chapter’s Systems Engineering Cash Awards. All projects from the 21 different Categories in the Fair, which included Animal Sciences, Behavioral and Social Sciences, Biochemistry, Biomedical and Health Sciences, Biomedical Engineering, Chemistry, Computational Biology and Bioinformatics, Earth and Environmental Sciences, Embedded Systems, Energy: Chemical, Energy: Physical, Engineering Mechanics, Environmental Engineering, Material Science, Mathematics, Microbiology, Physics and Astronomy, Plant Sciences, Robotics and Intelligent Machines, Systems Software, and Translation Medical Sciences were reviewed and considered for the awards.  This year 5 Junior Projects were selected for interviews by Karl Geist and Greg Olson, and 7 Senior Projects were selected for interviews by Karl Geist, Greg Olson, and Jim Wetzel to determine the 6 INCOSE Winners. At the Awards Ceremony, Karl Geist presented the awards to the Senior High Division winning students Braedon Myers’ First Place Project “UFR (Unmanned First Responder)”, Natalie Wolfe’s Second Place Project “Strike Sensing System’, and Kathryn McCurdy’s Honorable Mention Project “Automatic Window Washer”, and the Junior High Division winning students Ryan Williams’ First Place Project “Remotely Op. Planetary Exploration Rover”, Tom Wilson’s Second Place Project ” Something Here is Fishy”, and Ria Sharma’s Honorable Mention Project “Solar Powered Water Desalination”. These winners will be part of an Award Reception Sponsored by The Patuxent Partnership and INCOSE SoMD Chapter on the 21 February 2017 at 5:00 pm at the Great Mills Highs School.  Thank you again to the Judges, and Congratulations again to all the winners.  Please register for this event HERE

Braedon Myers at his First Place Project “UFR (Unmanned First Responder)”

Natalie Wolfe at her Second Place Project “Strike Sensing System’

Ryan Williams at his First Place Project “Remotely Op. Planetary Exploration Rover”

Tom Wilson at his
Second Place Project ” Something Here is Fishy”

Ria Sharma at her
Honorable Mention Project “Solar Powered Water Desalination”

Kathryn McCurdy at her
Honorable Mention Project “Automatic Window Washer”