Illinois Department of Transportation and Axiom knock one out of the park!

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COLLINSVILLE, ILLINOIS, USA — This month MicroStation Today had the chance to catch up with Marcus McConachie, the Engineering Applications Specialist for the Illinois Department of Transportation. Not only did we find out that Marcus has a lot of love for his family and the St. Louis Cardinals, but that he also has quite an affinity for Axiom utilities.

Marcus McConachie is the Engineering Applications Specialist for the Illinois DOT

MicroStation Today: Please, tell us about your background and career in the CAD industry?

Marcus: I first started using CAD in 1996 when I attended John A. Logan College in Carterville, Illinois. The first CAD software we used there was AutoCAD version 11 and then we upgraded to AutoCAD 14 after my first year. After graduating in May 1998 with an Associates Degree in CAD, I started working for a civil engineering/surveying firm called J.T. Blankenship & Associates in Murphysboro, Illinois. The two biggest problems with this new job were 1) they used a program called MicroStation, which I had never seen before and 2) my background was in industrial technology, not civil engineering. Thankfully, everything worked out because I really liked using MicroStation over AutoCAD and I also enjoyed the civil engineering field. Though I was mainly a CAD draftsman, I also operated the computer onboard our hydrographic surveying boat. Most of the surveying occurred on the Mississippi River for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Even though I really enjoyed my employment there, I wanted to move a little closer to the St. Louis area, where I would be closer to family and friends (and closer to the St. Louis Cardinals). I started with the Illinois Department of Transportation in Collinsville, Illinois as a CAD draftsman in 2000. In 2002, I received a new position in the IT department, as the Engineering Applications Specialist. I still hold this position today and the main focus of my job is to provide CAD assistance and training to Illinois Department of Transportation CAD users. I assist with the training and provide day-to-day support for all types of CAD issues and other engineering application software. The best part of my job is when I finally figure out “what the problem is”.

MST: Which Axiom products do you use?

Marcus: FileFixer and Microsoft Office Importer. We use FileFixer all the time at Illinois Department of Transportation and also use Microsoft Office Importer quite a bit too. We really enjoy both those products. We have also used RefManager and SpecChecker a little bit and look to possibly use them more in the future.

MST: How has FileFixer helped your work?
Marcus: FileFixer was especially helpful when we converted from MicroStation J to V8. We had to ensure that all our V7 design files were free of corruption before migrating. FileFixer has saved priceless design file information and invaluable work time for our users and CAD administrators over the years.

MST: What are some of your major accomplishments?
Marcus: I just got married a little over a year ago to my beautiful wife, Becky, and we recently just moved into our new — and first — house in Waterloo, Illinois about 25 miles from St. Louis. We really enjoy attending sporting events (St. Louis Cardinals) and I also love watching sports at home (mostly the St. Louis Cardinals). Besides getting my wife to marry me, my biggest accomplishment is having the opportunity to work with CAD, doing something I enjoy and not hating coming to work everyday.

MST: So, it’s safe to say you are a fan of baseball and the Cardinals?
Marcus: Baseball has always been my favorite sport and watching the Cardinals is a family tradition around here. In addition to the other St. Louis teams, like the Rams (football) and the Blues (hockey), I am also a big Notre Dame football fan [Editor’s note: the University of Notre Dame is located in Notre Dame, Indiana and was founded in 1842]. Our biggest hobby, besides watching sports, is just hanging out with our family and friends. We have lots of family in the area so there is rarely a weekend that we do not have something to do.

MST: Thanks, Marcus!

Marcus: Go Cards!

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