Through the Years: An NSPE Time Line 1980–1989

Year: 1980 | 1981 | 1982 | 1983 | 1984 | 1985 | 1989

1980

To honor outstanding engineers from federal agencies, NSPE establishes the Federal Engineer of the Year Award.

1981

The National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies is formed by the merger of the Engineering Technologist Certification Institute and the Institute for the Certification of Engineering Technicians. Today NICET, a service of NSPE, provides testing and certification services across a broad range of disciplines to engineering technicians and technologists.

1982

The National Academy of Forensic Engineers becomes a chartered affinity group of NSPE.

1983

NSPE breaks ground for its new headquarters at 1420 King Street, Alexandria, Virginia.

1984

NSPE celebrates its 50th anniversary. Among the anniversary activities was the commissioning of The Spirit of Engineering (listen now), a symphony composed by Richard Bales (1915–1998), who served as conductor of the National Gallery Orchestra in Washington, D.C., from 1943 to 1985. The Society also presented walkways on the grounds of the Washington Monument as a gift from NSPE and the engineering community to the people of the U.S.

With input from state societies and chapters, NSPE names the 10 greatest engineering feats from 1934–1994. The winners were nylon, first working nuclear pile, ENIAC electronic computer, the transistor, Boeing 707 jet airliner, inertial navigational guidance system, Telstar communications satellite, Apollo 11, helium-neon laser, and the implantable pacemaker.

Following a campaign by NSPE members, the U.S. Postal Service issues a 40-cent stamp commemorating Lillian Moller Gilbreth (1878–1972), who is often referred to as "the first lady of engineering." Gilbreth ran a consulting firm with her husband and helped pioneer the field of time-and-motion studies. In 1965, she became the first woman elected to the National Academy of Engineering.

The first MATHCOUNTS national competition is held.

In July, NSPE dedicates its new headquarters building at 1420 King Street in Alexandria, Virginia. On December 8, moving crews delivered the last boxes from the Society's old headquarters on K Street in Washington, D.C

1985

NSPE successfully lobbies to have the National Science Foundation's charter amended to include engineering as part of the NSF mission.

1989

NSPE forms the U.S. Council on International Engineering Practice with ABET and the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying.

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