Blogs

May 19, 2014 - 10:16
Max Fischer was on 18 extracurricular teams, ranging from fencing and debate to the skeet shooting team and beekeepers club. As the high-schooler in the Wes Anderson film, Rushmore, the contradictory Max (played by Jason Schwartzman) was an overachieving go-getter and, at the same time, the least motivated, lowest performing scholar at Rushmore Academy. Work can sometimes feel like a life of Max: We serve multiple clients at a time; we’re heavily involved in a variety of projects; we’re held accountable for timelines and results while leading a multitude of interdisciplinary teams. Yet even...
May 19, 2014 - 09:20
The National Society of Professional Engineers recently published the first edition of the Engineering Body of Knowledge (EBOK), which describes the capabilities and abilities deemed necessary to practice engineering in responsible charge at an early point in an engineer’s career. When this first edition was completed and summarized, I was struck by its implications for lifelong learning in the practice of engineering. The need for lifelong learning in one’s engineering career is accelerating, for a number of reasons. Change is one of the certainties in life and in practice, and the pace...
March 20, 2014 - 08:50
A year after he left presidential office, Teddy Roosevelt arrived in Paris in 1910 and gave his now famous “Man in the Arena” speech as part of a larger address to the crowds at the prestigious Sorbonne, the precursor to the modern University of Paris: It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no...
February 10, 2014 - 11:21
The Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) Examination and the Principles and Practice of Engineering (PE) Examinations have historically been used as a means to confirm an applicant’s engineering capability at the level of minimum competence required to protect the public health, safety, and welfare. Coupled with the education and experience requirements, these examinations play a significant role in the licensure process in the US, as many applicants are not able to pass one or the other. The current exams contain almost exclusively technical content, and do not address the full breadth of the...
February 3, 2014 - 09:57
For the past five years, the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES) has been considering how to structure an alternate pathway to licensure after 2020, based on input received largely from mechanical and chemical engineers who contend that post-graduate advanced learning in their areas of practice is predominantly industry- and practice-based, and not academic in nature. This article presents an idea that might help all parties move forward. Background In 2006, NCEES adopted modifications to its Model Law encouraging jurisdictions to consider revisions after...
December 11, 2013 - 16:25
It’s a professional reality that all bosses are not great bosses. Anyone can become a manager, but to become a leader, other behaviors become distinguishing factors. Anyone can report to a manager, but only a leader will have followers. One such distinction is the role that leaders play in individual career development, something that some managers don’t prioritize or ignore altogether. When it comes to career development, here are five distinguishing factors in separating leaders from managers. If indicators below were on a sliding scale with leader on one end and manager on the polar...
November 20, 2013 - 10:30
Make the Most out of Your Thanksgiving Holiday Travels With Thanksgiving comes the promise of family gatherings, second helpings of gravy and stuffing (my personal favorite of all the holiday carbs), and meeting family and loved ones on the landscape of reunions and “How’s work?” inquiries. But one barrier stands between you and that table of plenty: travel. Whether you are driving, flying, or even hosting a Thanksgiving Day gathering, there is work to be done and time, effort, and patience spent before earning your seat at the table with your sanity intact. For productivity hounds out...
November 19, 2013 - 09:16
The National Society of Professional Engineers has released the first edition of “The Engineering Body of Knowledge” (EBOK), a first effort on behalf of the profession in defining the knowledge, skills, and attitudes required for the practice of engineering as a professional engineer in responsible charge of engineering activities that may impact public health, safety, and welfare. The EBOK is intended to apply to all disciplines of engineering. The 60-page document is intended for a broad audience—engineer interns and practicing engineering supervisors and mentors, employers,...
November 19, 2013 - 09:07
How PE Licensure Has Changed Interesting article by Kathy Hart in the October issue of NCEES’s Licensure Exchange. Hart is the executive director of the Oklahoma State Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors, and she writes about the changes in licensure over the past 20 years. She mentions three in particular: Exam Administration “In 1993, all exams were on paper and used #2 pencils that the board staff sharpened by hand before every exam administration. Exams were shipped to the board office (in a not particularly secure manner) and a couple of days were spent...
October 3, 2013 - 09:43
Unlicensed Practice of Engineering A few years ago, an NCEES survey of state professional engineering licensing boards requested information from each board on the categories of violations indicated for cases opened during a two-year period. Responses were received regarding data on several thousand disciplinary cases. The frequency of categories of violations reported in that survey was as follows, beginning with the most frequent: incompetence/negligence; unlicensed practice/offer; ethics/professional conduct/misconduct; fraud, deceit, misrepresentation; and...

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