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4specs Discussion Forum » Ralph W. Liebing, RA, CSI, CDT » Education of the Young [and OLD, too???] « Previous Next »

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Posted on Monday, December 06, 2010 - 08:40 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

by Ralph Liebing, RA, CSI, CDT
Cincinnati, OH

High above in the crag of the rocks the mother eagle nudges your fledgling out of the nest into the open space-- to fly! No instruction; no practice sessions; no manual-- just “go and do”! If the fledgling falls too far, Mom Eagle will be there to catch it an delivery it back to the nest-- pending the next nudging! Finally, the fledgling WILL fly, beautifully, stronger and stronger, until its time to ”nudge”! Here is pure raw native or natural instinct-- the inborn ability to do this and to sustain.

The Good Lord in all His wisdom, has not given such an inborn instinct, for specifications, to any human-- not that He doesn’t believe in them but there are many other priorities. So where does the instinct come to us-- and assuredly we, specifications writers all have acquired it-- and maybe we should ask, why?

We, our peers with other interests, and those aspiring to the design professions are in that valley of craggy rocks, but there is that “slot” of light, down the valley that eggs us on-- that place where we contribute, do good, and produce quality products. The older and more experienced we are, the more we know about the rocks, but often we still run into and get snagged by them [infrequently with more experience] Perhaps we merely find a nest of our own and hug to it, putting what we do best with the adventure of “flying” elsewhere.

The problem with our young, though, is they see the “slot” of light, between the facing cliffs, but the crags of rock do not register-- they seem to be smooth, straight, easy, virtually innocuous and unthreatening. The “light” is what the young perceive of the profession, although their eyes are both jaded [by theoretical academics] and by the impression they gather from very limited resources open to them [publication, etc.]. A false impression lies in far too many of these young eyes-- they see not the totality of their work and profession!

As to “nudging”—there ain’t none! There is warping, perhaps deceiving, tunnel vision, narrowness, eyes with blinders, and simple lack of full disclosure. Education does not ALWAYS include everything-you-ever-wanted- to-know-about-………! It is a foreshortened process and giving some basis for future growth [is that a nudge] but comes with no Mom Eagle to catch you in mid-flight!

To follow that thought, Mom Eagle does not indicate that the fledgling should “come fly with me”, but rather urges the little one to learn to fly. In profession education, with no instinct in others to provide “saving services”, one has to be prepared—at least aware—to meet the variations that may come in real practice including those that never see the light of day in school! Therein lies a major challenge and a drastic need for the correct survival of the professions, and including ours! How do you do things well when you are never made aware of them, much less being instructed in the proper procedures?

In the wonder of CSI and all of its insight, documents and programs, there is the strongest of indications that experience is there to assist in making your experience better-- BUT not to make you aware, attracted or interested! This falls into the generality that all the goodness in the world is rather useless to those who don’t know what there is or what you are talking about!

We need to change that-- don’t we?

Seems quite appropos to Coffe Pot and Water Cooler, item on Front End, above

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