This week, NCEES, the organization representing engineering licensing boards, held its annual meeting in Williamsburg, Virginia. Not surprisingly, ASCE is deeply invested in the issues discussed and debated by NCEES delegates. After all, civil engineers represent the vast majority (about 70 percent) of licensed professional engineers. In addition to the many ASCE members represented among the delegates from state P.E. and professional surveying boards, Mike Conzett, an active ASCE member from Nebraska, was installed as NCEES president. Past ASCE president Dan Turner was installed as president-elect. I admire and appreciate the commitment of all of these individuals to advancing the engineering profession and helping to uphold our obligation to protect public health, safety and welfare.
Among the issues on the agenda at this meeting was approval of a position statement regarding increased educational requirements for engineering licensure, a position that is in keeping with ASCE’s own policy in support of moving to a master’s degree as a requirement for licensure for future P.E.s.
Passage of this position statement represents an important acknowledgement that future professional engineers will need advanced education, and that incorporating this in the licensure process will one day be necessary.
The world is changing. Practice is more complex; technology is exploding. What a change I’ve seen over my 50-year career in how we do our engineering work. I strongly believe that obtaining more education beyond the bachelor’s degree is going to continue to be recognized as necessary. More and more new graduates are going on to get a master’s degree as I did. The workplace continues to change. It’s hard to imagine the complexity of the world that awaits today’s students.
We have an obligation as the stewards of our great profession – an obligation to future engineers and to the public they will serve – to ensure that the requirements for licensure keep pace with this changing world. I’m pleased that NCEES is, like us, shaping a future vision for needed change.
Read more about the NCEES position statement.