October , 1999

APEGGA Launches Enhanced University Student Program

By Mischelle van Thiel

The enhanced APEGGA STUDENT ADVANTAGE PROGRAM (ASAP) is offered free to all university students in second, third and fourth year engineering, geology and geophysics.

APEGGA holds the enviable position among sister associations of registering more than 90 per cent of university graduates as Members in Training (M.I.T.s). For years, APEGGA has prided itself in the close relationship that exists between the Association, the faculties and departments of post-secondary institutions and their students. APEGGA University Liaison Committees assist and encourage student activities, APEGGA staff assists in the organization of fourth-year courses on the professions and ethics, the Board of Examiners relies heavily on the academic expertise in the faculties and departments, and senior managers and volunteers liaise frequently with the universities on a range of subjects. However, in 1998 several ideas for further improving the relationship with students were identified and a plan to implement these enhancements was approved by Council.

In spring 1999, a survey of engineering and geoscience undergraduate students was undertaken to determine what students currently know about the Association and their degree of satisfaction with the existing university student program. The results were presented to the Student Liaison Committees at University of Calgary and the University of Alberta.

Two major themes emerged. First, a large percentage of students felt that they did not know enough about APEGGA, its structure, mandate or roles. Even more felt that they did not understand the reasons for joining the Association, aside from the fact that it is the law. The benefits of membership are not well understood, even amongst fourth-year students. Secondly, many students were not aware of the services APEGGA currently makes available to them such as scholarships, student society funding, practice of the professions seminars, and on-campus special events.

With these issues in mind, Council approved the development of an enhanced student program whose aims would be to increase awareness of and affinity to APEGGA on campus, to assist students in better understanding the professions, and to allow student to become members of the Association prior to graduation. A complementary aim of the program is to increase professional member participation in student activities and events.

The new student program consists of all the previous program elements including scholarships, society funding, event funding, student mixers and practice of the professions seminars. However, supported by recommendations from the students, the program has been enhanced by the addition of a student membership category, a student membership card, access to member services including group insurance, RRSPs and resumal referral services, direct mailing of The PEGG, and a student section on our website. Student members may also obtain personal business cards (at a nominal fee) and additional scholarship funding for second, third and fourth-year students has been recommended to the APEGGA Education Foundation.

The enhanced APEGGA Student Avantage Program (ASAP) is offered free to all university students in second, third and fourth-year year engineering, geology and geophysics. A colourful new logo and series of promotional posters, letters and brochures have been created to give the program a cohesive and easily recognizable image. The program launch will take place Oct. 6 during the Student Mixers at both universities. Students will be encouraged to sign up immediately using a tear-off application form included in the brochure. As well, students will be directly mailed an information and registration package through the joint efforts of the Association and the faculty and department offices.

APEGGA remains committed to enhancing the status and recognition of the professions throughout the province. The new ASAP program will contribute to these goals, while also strengthening our relationship with our future members. Further information on the ASAP program can be obtained from our website at We encourage all students to get with the program, ASAP and start enjoying the benefits of membership in your professional Association now.

Mischelle van Thiel is APEGGA's Professional Development Coordinator and is based at the Association's Calgary office.

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