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After Action Report: The 21st INCOSE International Symposium

by Communications Team on July 1, 2011  •   Print This Post Print This Post   •   

Two of our very own went to the 21st INCOSE International Symposium. Here are their reports:

Dave Fadeley
Dave Fadeley in Denver, enjoying the 2011 INCOSE International Symposium

After being an SE for over 25 years and an INCOSE member for about 5 years, I had the opportunity to attend my first INCOSE International Symposium, the 21st INCOSE Symposium in Denver during 20-24 June. Since I was essentially using my funds for the event, I was determined to get my money’s worth, and boy did I! I attended every session and all the social functions – the Icebreaker on Monday evening, the Social on Tuesday evening, and the Banquet on Wednesday evening that featured a John Denver-look alike singing John Denver songs against a Rocky Mountain backdrop.

At the sessions, I asked questions, met new colleauges at Lunch and break times where we shared thoughts and impressions with fellow SEs. I purposely sat with people I did not know in order to meet new people. I sat in many non-DoD type presentations such as Rail and Bio Med in order to see what they were doing, especially how they were tailoring SE for their industry. I visisted the vendor and university booths, gathered pens, literature, water bottles and other marketing tokens (Hey, I’ve got 5 kids at home!).

My take aways were (1) systems thinking goes beyond systems engineering and is an essential characteristic of an excellent SE to solve non-engineering problems and (2) I wanted to be actively involved in the next symposium I attend e.g. presenter or panelist.

Overall, it was well worth it, and am looking forward to following up on some thoughts started there…..and thinking about the next one….I’ve always loved Italian food!

~~ Dave Fadeley, ESEP


Paul Martin
Paul Martin at the UMBC Training Center Booth at the 2011 INCOSE International Symposium

It was exciting to go back to the INCOSE International Symposium after an 11 year absence. In 2000 we met in the Brew City of Milwaukee, this year it was the Mile High City of Denver. 600 registrants from 20 countries descended on the Denver Convention Center to hear speakers from Japan discuss rebuilding the country after the great earthquake/tsunami; from Rolls-Royce and its mission to be the world’s premiere power systems provider; and from the Global Earth Observation System of Systems where the integration of countless satellites and measurement platforms that will help us understand the earth better.

It was great to be immersed in all things Systems Engineering for 4 days. From the challenges of Complexity to the difficulties of creating a Graduate Reference Curriculum to Advance Systems Engineering, the speakers brought theory and practicality into the same venue.

Getting the 2010 Gold Circle
Chesapeake’s President-Elect Gundars Osvalds receive’s the 2010 Gold Circle Award from the INCOSE president, Samantha Robitaille, at the 2011 INCOSE International Symposium

One of the more memorable events was hearing the 2012 INCOSE President, John Thomas, discuss the importance of being a “credentialed” Systems Engineer during the Certification reception on Tuesday night. He waxed eloquently about the higher purposes of Systems Engineers as we bring solutions to global scale problems, making a better society.

I really enjoyed it all and it was topped off with a fantastic banquet as our chapter received a Gold Circle award and the Most Improved Performance award. I was proud to be part of helping make that possible and it’s even better to be part of such a honorable profession.

Dave Fadeley is right, next year let’s go to Rome and get another Gold Circle Award.

~~ Paul Martin, CSEP

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