SE – Armageddon

Once again April has arrived, and tomorrow SE-Armageddon will hit.

“Hasn’t Jennifer mentioned this excruciating structural engineering exam a time or two before?” you might wonder.

Why, yes I have. FIVE TIMES!

“Wow, Jennifer must be the oldest, most jaded person to be showing up for the lateral load portion of the SE exam for the fifth time tomorrow,” you might conclude.

Actually, no I am not. Last time I sat next to a very cranky man about to take the exam for the seventh time. And at the end of the day he seemed pretty certain he’d be back for his eighth attempt.

“Is some sort of crazy hazing going on at this exam?” you might wonder.

Nope, just a room packed with one hundred structural engineering hopefuls and over three thousand reference books. And an exam so long, covering material so diverse, that the return applicants all say a little prayer in hopes they actually know how to do all four of their afternoon problems this time.

Please SE Gods, give me four rectangular building problems for a change. Enough of the enormous steel umbrellas, X-shaped irregular structures, odd parking lot sunscreens, and Leaning Grain Towers of Pisa. Here’s a crazy thought: Let’s test the building structural engineers on whether they can design a building that actually exists in the real world.

“Why does Jennifer continue to torture herself in this manner?” you might ask.

Because I am too stubborn to give up. Ever. On anything.

As a child my nickname was Bucky. I grew up in Wisconsin, but that nickname had nothing to do with Bucky the Badger. I was notorious for refusing to give up (or go to sleep) when I set my mind to accomplish something. Stubbornness is a virtue. If necessary, I will spend my retirement years cramming for this same SE exam just to prove I can eventually pass it. Really hope it doesn’t come to that, of course.

Let’s all keep our fingers and toes crossed this time, okay?



About Jennifer Kay

Jennifer Kay is a KidLit author and Structural Engineer. She has a VCFA MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults, is an SCBWI Rockford Network Rep, edits the SCBWI IL Prairie Wind, and belongs to Mystery Writers of America. Jennifer works as a writer, freelance editor, literary agency reader, and creative writing teacher.
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6 Responses to SE – Armageddon

  1. KarinB. says:

    Good luck. Break a leg. Truckloads of Karma. And a sprinkle of fairy dust…

  2. Jennifer Kay says:

    Thanks. I think the fairy dust will make all the difference. Well, that and the three days locked in the study cave!

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