As a relative ‘newbie’ to the Construction field – I started in January of 2006 and to the Construction Specifications Institute (CSI) – I only joined February 12, 2009 – I can already look back and recollect and say “look at what CSI has brought me” in such short time.
First and foremost, CSI has educated me. As a product rep for a finish (we supply and install athletic flooring of all types), CSI has completely opened my eyes to the Project, but further to the Project team. The project is full of Divisions and Requirements that do not necessarily directly relate to my trade, however, I can better understand how all of the parties on the Project Team come together because of the education I have received. Whether it has been through a monthly program, through conversation with a fellow member, or through my CDT certification, I feel much more knowledgeable about the many facets of the Project.
CSI has expanded my network. Speaking of being a ‘newbie’, I have only lived in Pennsylvania since April of 2008. I deem myself shy and a wallflower in public places (and some people that know me well will question that) and unfortunately, I don’t make friends easily. After spending a few CSI meetings in my local Allentown chapter off to the side, I slowly started recognizing faces and names and vice versa. After a realization that most of the people around were much like me, I opened up a little more and more as the months went on. Fast forward through CSI meetings in Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Williamsport, State College and Camp Hill (home of my 2nd ‘home’ chapter – Central Pennsylvania), I can now say that most of my closest friends in PA are fellow CSI members. People that I can depend on to answer a question, lend a hand, grab a drink and share a laugh. I truly feel part of the CSI family.
CSI has brought me places. Whether it was Chicago (home of CONSTRUCT in 2011 and a place I’d never been) or into an office that warmly welcomed me because of the CSI brotherhood, in a short period of time I feel that I have had to chance to bring myself places in more ways than one. CONSTRUCT 2011 was an incredible experience, filled with fantastic educational classes, a great exhibit hall and the best of speakers and people. I will never forget my time in the Windy City (which you can read about here: http://ericdlussier.wordpress.com/2011/10/03/construct-2011-in-chicago-through-my-eyes/ ) and am already very looking forward to Phoenix for CONSTRUCT 2012 and I hope, San Diego for the CSI Academies in March.
I could go on about CSI, but these 3 points above I feel strongest about. But I am going to try and wrap up by saying what CSI is not. If you are a product rep, CSI is not a guaranteed spec. It is not guaranteed work. To have CSI work for you, you have to work at CSI. My personal CSI mantra has become “CSI pays back what you put into it. Join, commit, be active and network."
Become a member of this amazing team. What it all comes down to is the mission of CSI, which is to advance building information management and education of project teams to improve facility performance.
Effective immediately until Monday, October 31st, you have a great opportunity to join CSI. Please don't miss this special offer! Join CSI by October 31 and pay only $192 for national dues -- a 20% savings.
1. Visit www.csinet.org/joincsi
2. Select "Join Now", and then click "Sign Up as a New Member"
3. Enter Promotion Code 1220ARCH when prompted
4. Click the "Add Discount" button
And if you do, please use my CSI member number 1014285. Then, please drop me a line and tell me you joined. I can be found at firstname.lastname@example.org, on Twitter @EricDLussier, on Facebook at Facebook.com/EricDLussier or on LinkedIn at http://www.linkedin.com/in/ericdlussier
Hope to see you at a meeting!
The miscellaneous ramblings of Eric D. Lussier, CSI, CDT