Our post today is written by Peter Hallsworth, CEng FICE. Contributor for The Structural Exam.
Peter is a Member of the Institution Council and serves on several panels including the Professional Reviews Panel and the Fellowship Panel.
Peter became a Chartered Engineer in 1975 and undertook his first Professional Review in 1982. Since then he has undertaken just shy of 500 reviews of all kinds from Technician through to Fellow. He has been also running a Written Exercise Group based in Manchester and online for ten years, with several participants winning prizes every year.
What to put in your submission report?
So you have decided you are ready to sit the ICE Chartered Engineer Professional Review and your task is to demonstrate how you personally have achieved all the Attributes. There are basically two ways you achieve this. Firstly the face-to-face Review and but also the submission pack which sets the scene.
The best way to think about what to include is to list the Attributes and look at the projects you have worked on, then identify the Attributes that are demonstrated by each project. This will also identify your strongest and weakest attributes.
The primary project to choose is the one that demonstrates the most Attributes. You will then need to look at the other Attributes and possibly add a second project. The most popular split is design work and site work. The first demonstrates Engineering Knowledge and the second shows Management and Commercial with a dose of Health and Safety.
You should try to cover your weaker Attributes in the submission so that discussion in the review itself focuses on your stronger attributes because you will perform better that way.
The most recent project needs to be the first that is presented. This will be the one where you have held the most personal responsibility and taken a role that is almost that of a Chartered Engineer. This gives the reviewers the impression of you as a Chartered Engineer and the following older projects show the progression of your years of training and experience.
If you talk about the puffin crossing you designed just after graduation first that gives the impression of a junior engineer. Instead you need to talk initially about how you organised the collection of asset data and defined the contract parameters for the maintenance contractors to tender against. Your reviewers then think of you as the ‘asset' engineer not the ‘puffin' person.
The Professional Commitment Attribute probably needs its own paragraph and needs to include talking in schools and involvement in ICE activities. This is where you would include work in a year out building composting facilities in Uganda to improve sanitation. Similarly other Attributes that have been a bit neglected, like Sustainable Development, can be covered.
The two-page CV is useful. It list all your projects and the ones you have chosen to talk about are normally subtly highlighted. There should be no gaps so if you took a break to have children or go on a racing yacht around the world include it. And, of course, make sure you can talk about any of them clearly and coherently.
So get your pen into action and draft the submission. Make use of your sponsors, friends and colleagues and ask their opinion on a first draft. You can then do a second draft which will be much better (perhaps even a third draft…)
You have to submit a precis with your application and the final pdf document is submitted electronically some four weeks before your review. So for the Spring 2017 session that means an application before 9th January and the full report by the end of February. You should also consult the ICE Professional Review Guidance.
So it's good luck from me, and structure your submission so the reviewers' questions are aimed at your strengths.