Note: The print version of the following story misidentified
the type of NCEES exams being written in Alberta. Those examinations
are for fundamentals of engineering. The exam four years later,
principles of engineering, is the final step before being
permitted to apply for licensure from any of the individual
state boards. The PEGG apologizes for the error.
BY GEORGE LEE
Two APEGGA managers are trained and ready to administer the
writing of U.S. fundamentals of engineering examinations in
Alberta, which is an important move towards simplifying the
approval process for doing engineering work in the States.
Professional engineers here will be able to write the next
eight-hour FE exam in their own province on Oct. 25, 2003.
Successful completion of the exam is a member's first step
towards licensure in U.S. states and being permitted to carry
the U.S. designation P.E., or professional engineer. FE examinations
are conducted twice a year, in April and October.
APEGGA Deputy Registrar Al Schuld, P.Eng., and Manager of
Examinations Dr. Milt Petruk, P.Eng., travelled to South Carolina
earlier this year to train as chief proctors for the National
Council of Examiners for Engineers and Surveyors. For their
inaugural Alberta examinations, an NCEES invigilator will
monitor the NCEES exams conducted in Alberta.
Putting on the exams is no minor undertaking, said Dr. Petruk.
Chief proctors follow a strict protocol to make sure exams
aren't removed and that they're written honestly and properly.
"NCEES is extremely diligent and thorough about the way
in which they allow participants to write these exams,"
said Dr. Petruk. Standard pencils are provided, for example,
and even the type of calculator writers use is mandated.
APEGGA isn't sure how many members will take advantage of
the exam day. If a sufficient number of Calgary-area engineers
register, exams will be written there as well as in Edmonton.
Venues are tentatively set as the APEGGA conference centres
in Edmonton and Calgary, although if numbers make it necessary,
the exams will be written off site.
Registrations must be received by APEGGA by Sept. 8 at the
latest - there will be no extensions. Cost is $125 US, which
must be paid in U.S. funds. APEGGA will accept VISA, MasterCard,
bank drafts in U.S. dollars or even U.S. cash.
Making the deadline is a good career move for many members,
the examinations manager said, as well as an important service
for APEGGA to offer. "It's not that we want to send our
graduates to the U.S., although that's certainly something
that does happen sometimes. But Alberta residents and companies
are taking on more engineering projects in the U.S. than they
once did. Engineers will work in the U.S. for a few months
or even one or two years, then come back.
"Many of the consulting firms have offices worldwide.
And many of our major oil companies are now owned by Texas
Ideally, members should write the FE exam soon after they
graduate. Because of the emphasis on fundamentals, it helps
to write before engineers become too specialized, Dr. Petruk
After successfully completing the FE exam, an engineer has
to practice for four years before writing the principles of
engineering, or PE, exam. Then an engineer is eligible to
apply at any of the U.S. state boards for registration as
a PE. Although NCEES looks after all the exams, actual registration
approval remains under the jurisdiction of each state's licensing
board. That means if you're licensed in Montana, you'll still
need an Alaska license to practice in Alaska.
The Oct. 25 exams will be the first with APEGGA proctors,
but FE exams were written here twice in less than a year.
In those cases, Montana proctors came to Edmonton to administer
the examinations. In October of last year 18 members wrote
the exams, and 34 members wrote them in April 2003. Of those
52 writers, 51 passed, which is a much higher success rate
than the NCEES records in the U.S.
Registration forms will soon be online at
the APEGGA website
Submit registration online
Or print a form, fill it out and fax it to:
Dr. Milt Petruk, P.Eng.
at (780) 426-1877
Cost: $125 US
Payable in U.S. Funds Only
(VISA, MasterCard, bank draft, and, in person only, U.S. cash)
Manager of Examinations Dr. Milt Petruk, P.Eng.
Phone (780) 426-3990, toll free 1-800-661-7020