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Monday, 09 December 2019
Chambers’ Affiliation with FEANI

The Chamber of Engineers continues to be an ever growing, dynamic and active organisation working towards ongoing enhancement and safeguarding of the engineering profession.  At both a local and European level, the Chamber actively participates in international discussion groups through the Chamber's various affiliations.

FEANI

FEANI was founded in 1951, a few years after the end of the second world war, by a group of French and German engineers who thought that through technology, their common field of activity, it would be possible to create links between former adversaries, and so to facilitate the prosperous and peaceful development of European society.  Associations from seven European countries immediately joined this initiative.

Today associations from 33 European countries are represented in FEANI, bringing together more than 350 national engineering associations, all of which are recognised in their countries as the representatives of the engineering profession at the national level. Through these national associations, FEANI represents the interests of approximately 3,5 million professional engineers in Europe.

FEANI is a founding member of the World Federation of Engineering Organisations (WFEO) and collaborates with many other organisations dealing with engineering and technology issues and engineering education.

FEANI is officially recognised by the European Commission as representing the engineering profession in Europe. The federation also has consultative status with UNESCO, UNIDO and the Council of Europe.

Through its activities and services, especially with the attribution of the EUR ING professional title, FEANI aims to facilitate the mutual recognition of engineering qualifications in Europe and to strengthen the position, role and responsibility of engineers in society.

https://www.feani.org

 

 
Engineering - The route to safety and security

26th Annual Engineering Conference - Business Breakfast

Date: Wednesday 18th September 2019
Time: 08:30 - 12:00
Venue: Salini Resort, Salina

[ Online Registration ]

Registration Fees:

  • Non Members: EUR30
  • CoE members: EUR25
  • Students: EUR10
Complimentary parking on a first come first served basis.
 
Emergency General Meeting – 01 June 2019

The Chamber of Engineers has called an Emergency General Meeting. Official notice can be found as follows; EGM Notice.

The meeting will be held on Saturday 1st June 2019 at 9am, at The Professional Centre in Gżira.

Please note that this meeting will be open to both members and non-members of the CoE. Only paid-up members will have voting rights. Members who have not paid since 2017 may regularise their membership by paying at the door before the start of the meeting.

 

 
Change of Direction from the Engineering Board

The new council of the Chamber of Engineers (CoE) had met the Engineering Board on 25th March 2019 in order to discuss various matters including the latest updates on the process taking place in order to address deficiencies of the past MCAST graduate courses and to ensure that the new courses are in line with the quality that needs to be attained to meet the highest standards of engineering education. From that meeting, two critical points have been agreed upon:

  1. The past MCAST graduates should bridge any deficiencies through targeted bridging studies comprised of 60 ECTS credits at level 6 with examination based assessment. These bridging studies should be reviewed by external reviewer.
  2. The new MCAST courses should have 240ECTS credits at level 6 again based mostly on examination assessment as well as being reviewed annually by external reviewers

On Thursday 25th April, the Chamber of Engineers received a notice from the Engineering Board that the bridging studies will actually be of 30ECTS credits rather than the 60ECTS credits which was negotiated and agreed upon during numerous past meetings that the CoE has had with the new Engineering Board.

The CoE would like to express its utter dismay on such a radical shift from what was agreed upon. The council would like to stress to all CoE members, warranted professionals and also the general public that it is taking this matter very seriously.

The past MCAST courses were based on 120ECTS at level 5 and 120ECTS credits at level 6 while the course from the University of Malta is a 240ECTS credits course at level 6. Therefore 30ECTS credits only means a total of 150ECTS credits at level 6 rather than a full 240ECTS credits. At the moment, the law requires that only equivalent courses to the University of Malta can lead to the attainment of the warrant. This position is unjust to three interested parties:

  1. Current and past students of the B.Eng. (Hons.) course at the University of Malta
  2. New MCAST students who will be taking a full course of 240ECTS credits at level 6
  3. All current warrant holders who have gone through the University of Malta B.Eng.(Hons.) course.

The Chamber is already considering the various options at its disposal to tackle this issue. In the coming days we shall be calling an Extraordinary General Meeting open to all engineers, graduate engineers and engineering students in order to give the opportunity to everyone to express their views on the way forward from here.

 

 
Meeting with the Engineering Profession Board (25/03/19)

On 25th of March 2019, the newly elected Council of the Chamber of Engineers (CoE) held a meeting with the Engineering Profession Board (EPB) at The Professional Centre, the CoE headquarters. The purpose of this meeting was twofold. First, to cordially introduce the new council to the EPB. Secondly, the CoE requested the latest factual picture about current issues surrounding our profession including the Warrant as well as the Engineering Act which is currently being revised.

The EPB re-iterated that it recognises the CoE as the singular interlocutor between the EPB and the engineering community in Malta. The EPB also acknowledged the role of the CoE as the bridge between the EPB and the members of the engineering community.

The CoE took stock of the developments regarding the engineering profession warrant and gathered further information on the actions to date and future steps.  The same meeting was also the right platform to discuss the EPB’s work with respect to the revision of the Engineering Act, as planned for the near future. Both subjects were discussed in detail and the core points are sumarised hereunder:

The EPB has amended the interview process as part of the application of the Engineering Warrant in favour of more scrutiny and an improved process which recognises further the value of the Warrant.

The EPB has reviewed a Pre-Warrant Qualifications Course (60 ECTS at MQF Level 6) to commence at MCAST in April 2019. This will serve as a bridging course for MCAST students who followed a 180 ECTS course and currently do not fulfill the requirements for applying to the Engineering Warrant. The EPB has found the content of this bridging course satisfactory. The CoE also positively notes that apart from this first check, this Pre-Warrant Qualifications course will be subject to an independent external auditing process whose administrators will be appointed by the EPB. The audit will be carried out while the course is running. It is only once this bridging course has been scrutinised further by the external reviewers that the bridging study will be considered satisfactory. A further point that the CoE had emphasised in the past is that the attainment of credits should be tested through formal examinations. We were happy to note that indeed this will be the case for this bridging course.

The EPB said that Engineering courses at MCAST, as of the start of the academic year 2019/2020, are now composed of 240 ECTS and the exam component of the assessment method is also present in the entirety of the course content. Furthermore, as was emphasised several times by the CoE, the course content leading to a degree in engineering should be of an academic nature rather than a vocational education type of approach.

The EPB said that it is issuing a call for external auditors which will be responsible to ensure that both the new engineering courses at MCAST and the Pre-Warrant Qualifications course at the same institution are of the expected level. The EPB said that it wants to ensure that the results of the new courses are up to standard, which means that the auditing process will be taking place at minimum until the first set of graduands (i.e. the year 2023)

The CoE inquired on the details of the letter issued by the engineering board dated 9th October 2018 which provides guidance notes for candidates sitting for the interview process and also guidelines for the “Assessment of academic qualifications leading to the award of the warrant to practice of the engineering profession”. Particularly, the council voiced utter concern on the clause reading “a minimum of 3 year full time (180ECTS credits at level 6) Bachelors degree in Engineering recognised by the board plus a further minimum of one year full-time equivalent (60 ECTS at MQF level 6 [of a sub-level 3 or 4 within MQF level 6] or higher) leading to an engineering qualification.”. The EPB reassured the Chamber that this clause is only relevant to students graduating from the Faculty of ICT at the University of Malta which uses a 3+2 educational system in line with the Bologna process. This clause does not apply to the proposed 60ECTS bridging studies credits unless the full checks and balances take place and the course is found to be satisfactory.

The CoE requested further that in the future, a state exam should be considered leading to the qualification for the Warrant. This was in-line with the strategy of the EPB, resources permitting. This would be yet another checkpoint to ensure that warrant holders are only of the required standard.

As regards the Engineering Act, the EPB said that it has been putting effort in consolidating the Act’s structure from the legal perspective, and in this regard has sought for consultation from EU institutions.

The EPB is working on the proposal of the first draft to present to the Minister. The CoE formally requested that this revised act is made available for consultation with the COE and its members.

The CoE had worked on an initial draft of the act and subsequently requested the removal of the Alternative access and partial access to the profession. This will closely be followed up.

The CoE accepts with responsibility the confirmation of recognition by the EPB and commits itself to its members and the engineering community to ensure that it serves its rightful purpose as the bridge between authorities and the engineering community. The CoE will continue to do so while first and foremost be the voice of the best interests of the engineering profession. Throughout the coming months, the chamber will be following closely the evolvement of these items and others that may arise through continuous meetings with the EPB. The council will also be meeting other crucial stakeholders.

 
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