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RE: PE-Bureacracy

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Agreed, but then I don't feel the need to walk taller at the potential
future price of severe headaches when trying to get reciprosity in another
state.  If I were a young EIT in California, I personally would wait the
additional 2 years before getting my PE license to make myself consistant
with what every other state requires in terms of work experience.
Fortunately for me, I don't have to worry about that any more since I
don't live in California and am licensed in multiple states.  I do still
have the headache of having to take the surveying and seismic exams in
California (even thought hte odds that I will ever again use that
surveying knowledge again is rather miniscule, especially since the last
time I did anything with my surveying knowledge was back in college).
<grin>

And also, there are SOME companies that do highly value their employees
having their PE license so there can be a siginificant financial reward
for finally getting it.

So, ultimately it becomes a personal decision.

HTH,

Scott
Ypsilanti, MI


On Mon, 6 Jan 2003, Lutz, James wrote:

> Even if you don't need a PE license to do your job, it will certainly help
> you walk a little taller.
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Scott Maxwell [mailto:smaxwell(--nospam--at)engin.umich.edu]
> Sent: Monday, January 06, 2003 10:32 AM
> To: 'seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org'
> Subject: RE: PE-Bureacracy
>
>
> Tom,
>
> First, let me straighten you out a little.  California does not currently
> use any of the NCEES tests for getting you SE license in California
> (beyond getting your PE license).  They use what is called the Western
> States Exam, which is essentially an exam created for and used only in
> California at this time (used to be used by some other states as I
> understand it).  It is a 16 hour exam that covers only structural
> problems, but includes a wide range of structural problem subjects (i.e.
> wood, steel, concrete, masonry, seismic, etc).  FYI, there is some talk of
> this changing in the future, which would result in California using
> national exams produced by someone like NCEES.  As I understand it, there
> is pressure from the state legislature to move in this direction.
>
> Now, what I don't know (and someone from California could probably answer
> who has taken the PE test recently) is if California uses the NCEES Civil
> PE exam (likely) and/or the NCEES Structural I PE exam.  NCEES has two
> potential PE level exams that a person in structural could take...the
> Civil and the Structural I exam.  Format-wise they are the same in the
> sense that they will have the same number of problems of the same type
> (i.e. all multiple choice now).  Where they very is content-wise.  The
> NCEES Civil exam is just that...a general civil engineering exam, which
> means that you will have to answer questions on topics outside of
> structural engineering in addition to some structural problems (i.e. waste
> water treatment, geotech, transportation, material, environmental, etc).
> They have recently changed the content of the Civil exam to "specialize"
> it to a certain degree.  Currently the exam is setup (at least as I
> understand it) so that you answer all general questions in the morning 4
> hour portion, but then you choose a "speciality" for the afternoon and the
> problem will then focus more on that speciality along with the closer
> related specialies (i.e. if you choose structural, then you get some
> geotech questions along with your mostly structural questions).  The
> Structural I exam, on the other hand, is ALL structural questions.
>
> As I said, I don't know what California requires.  I do know that in
> addition to having to take the 8 hour NCEES exam (likely the Civil one but
> could be the Structural I exam), you have to take a 2 hour (I believe)
> surveying, a 2 hour (I believe) seismic, and a "take home" ethics exam.
>
> Now, strictly speaking you can potentially run into problems if you have
> taken one exam (let's say the NCEES Structural I exam for example sake)
> but not the other (the NCEES Civil exam in our example) if you wish to
> obtain reciprosity in another state.  Some states don't offer both exams
> and essentially require/accept only one exam.  If you desire reciprosity
> in such a state, then you could run into the problem of them not approving
> reciprosity because you have not taken the exam that they require/accept.
> If so, then it only means that you must take and pass the other exam.
>
> Now, to be honest, where you might have more problems coming from
> California is the fact that California only requires two years of
> experience after graduation to be able to sit for the PE exam, while every
> other state that I am aware of requires 4 years.  So if you take the PE
> exam in California only after two years of work experience, you are then
> faced with either the best case scenario that another state would allow
> you reciprocity once you have obtained the additional 2 years of
> experience or the worst case scenario that the other state considers you
> test results invalid since you sat for the exam two years too early and
> require you to take it again.  This type of beaucracy is definitely
> possible.  I have heard of a case when an engineering got his PE license
> in Minnesota, but in doing so the Minnesota board let him sit for the exam
> when he had just short of 4 years at teh time of application but had his 4
> years by the day of the test.  He passed.  Some number of years later he
> wanted to get his PE in one of the Dakotas by reciprosity, but they told
> him that he had to take the test again since he did not have his four
> years at the time he originally APPLIED to sit of the PE exam for his
> orignial license.  Thus, they considered his test results invalid.  Now, I
> don't for sure that this is a true story or even if it is whether or not
> such beaucracy has been "corrected", but it would certainly not suprise me
> to still see something like this still occur.
>
> The end result is that you will have to take your best guess on which exam
> to take between the Civil and Structural I or spend some time researching
> (meaning calling various state PE boards) to find out what they
> require/accept.  This is because the requirements vary from state to state
> as do their level of enforcement.  Personally, I would suggest waiting
> until you obtain 4 years of experience (at time of application) before you
> take the PE exam EVEN if you at taking it in California.  The plain truth
> is that you don't really techinically need you PE license unless you wish
> to go out on your own, so waiting another two years won't hurt too much.
> And in my experience, getting your PE license does instantly give you some
> huge raise in most companies.
>
> HTH,
>
> Scott
> Ypsilanti, MI
>
> On Mon, 6 Jan 2003, Tom Bodkin wrote:
>
> > While we are on this subject, I do have a question regarding reciprocity
> > amongst the states and I understand laws are subject to change ect.....
> >
> > I am planning on taking the P.E. Civil Engineers Exam emphasizing in
> > structures.  I plan on doing most of my work in structural engineering,
> but
> > wish to take the PE Civil/Structural Exam because I thought I heard that
> if
> > you wish to practice in California, the sequence of exams are PE Civil,
> > Structural I, then Structural II.  Also, it wouldn't hurt to learn about
> > soil properties because of soil/structure interaction.
> >
> > Does taking thew civil structural exam provide better practicing
> > opportunities among other states should the desire arise?  I know a PE
> > structural who had been interested in moving out to California but since
> he
> > didn't take the PE Civil exam, it precluded him from practiceing in that
> > state.
> >
> > Thanks in advance for your resonses.
> >
> > Tom Bodkin, E.I.T.
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: Paul Crocker [mailto:paulc(--nospam--at)ckcps.com]
> > Sent: Monday, January 06, 2003 12:04 PM
> > To: 'seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org'
> > Subject: RE: Florida PE-Bureacracy
> >
> >
> > "So, at this point with licenses I have obatined and resulting tests that
> I
> > have taken and passed, I am to the point that I can essentially get a
> > license by true reciprosity in every state except California."
> >
> > Don't forget our colleagues in Alaska.  They require a cold weather
> > engineering course and exam.  It looks fairly interesting, but the cost is
> > high, and it is only given 1 or 2 places outside of Alaska.
> >
> > Paul Crocker, PE, SE
> >
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