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Chamber of Engineers elects new council

MEDIA RELEASE

DATE: 6 MARCH 2013

The new Chamber of Engineers (CoE) Executive Council for the coming year was elected during the organisation’s Annual General Meeting held at the end of February 2013.

Saviour Baldacchino, Daniel Micallef and Johan Psaila were re-elected while Jason Vella and Neal Borg were elected for the first time. Ray Vassallo, Ray Muscat and Paul Refalo remain on the Council to serve their second term.

This year the CoE introduced voting by post to encourage wider member involvement. As expected, a considerably larger number of members participated by casting their vote to express their preference in selecting their representatives.

During his address, Chamber President Ing. Baldacchino noted with satisfaction the achievements of the Chamber during the past year and highlighted the enhancements made in the governance principles of the Chamber. He made specific reference to the restructuring of the training services division, the increase in membership and the challenges that have to be dealt with by the new council over the coming term. These include a review of quality levels of emerging engineering academic qualifications, updating of the Engineering Act and eligibility for the engineering warrant to maintain the high professional standard which merits today's society and the economy.

He mentioned that during the past years, the Chamber turned its focus on contemporary topics that include the environment, energy alternatives and water challenges. This year it will be focusing on engineering as the backbone of healthcare. The latter is already attracting the attention and interest of peer organisations and exponents from the biomedical engineering sphere.

He thanked the outgoing council and augured that the new Council would build on these efforts to continue to strengthen the voice of the engineering profession with enthusiasm and determination.

 
Commercialisation of research positive for industry and economy

MEDIA RELEASE

DATE: 21 December 2012

The Chamber of Engineers (CoE) was pleased to note the recent investment made by Methode Electronics. During the announcement, President and CEO Donald Dua highlighted Methode’s capabilities in engineering, design and manufacturing systems, which have led the company to be selected to produce a technologically advanced sensor at the Malta plant.

In meetings with political party leaders earlier this year, the Chamber reaffirmed that research and development in Malta should be further developed by industry. This would facilitate eventual commercialisation of resulting developments. The Chamber stresses that every effort should be made to make research in industry more attractive to the entrepreneur. In this regard the Chamber encourages the setting up of technical support centres made up of professional engineers from various disciplines together with other supporting professionals to engage and support the smaller industries and businesses which do not afford their own R&I facilities.

The CoE also emphasises that more intensive efforts are required to attract high technology and engineering industries to invest in Malta. Such industries are normally associated with more long-term high-value added jobs at various organisational levels and generate a higher rate of economic activity and growth.

The Chamber of Engineers commends Methode for being a role model in bringing R&I to its local plant and for illustrating the tangible initiatives being promoted by the CoE. The Chamber encourages other firms to follow this company’s example and assures them that it will continue to do its very best to support them by raising and maintaining a top notch local engineering professional standard.

 
High level projects awarded at Malta Engineering Excellence Awards 2012

MEDIA RELEASE

Date: 14th December 2012

Professor Joseph Mifsud, Ing. Carmel Cuschieri and Hoter Ltd were the proud winners of the 11th edition of the Malta Engineering Excellence Awards (MEEA) 2012, which was held recently at St John's Cavalier.

Over 250 engineers and guests attended this year’s ceremony, which is organised annually by the Chamber of Engineers (CoE). The MEEAs are an opportunity to recognise the capabilities of engineers in Malta, and is a flagship event of the CoE. CoE President Ing. Saviour Baldacchino and Lieutenant Commander William Woytyra, representing the United States Embassy presented the awards.

The award for Industrial Excellence was awarded to Hoter Ltd, run by Ing. Marco Cremona of Sustech Consulting.  Ing. Cremona has invented, built and tested the HOTER process leading to the development of the world’s first sewage-to-potable water plant for hotels and large commercial buildings.

The Leadership Award went to Ing. Charles Cuschieri. An engineer by profession, Ing. Cuschieri founded his consultancy firm in 1979 together with the late A.G. Camilleri CEng FIEE. In June 1982, he joined the University of Malta as the youngest full time lecturer at the time. He lectured in analogue and digital electronics and later in Power electronics. In 1989 he left lecturing to continue with his consultancy.

Professor Joseph Mifsud was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award. Prof. Mifsud began his engineering career at Malta Drydocks when he joined the ship repair yard as an apprentice. His academic studies progressed to a Mechanical Engineering degree at Surrey University. Returning to Malta, he joined the Mechanical Engineering Department, where he was promoted to senior lecturer and later to Head of Department, a post he kept until retirement.

During his address, CoE President Ing. Baldacchino noted his satisfaction that the MEEAs give the Chamber the opportunity to recognise engineering excellence in the presence of the largest gathering of professional and prospective engineers. Ing. Baldacchino pointed out that the Awards are publicised both locally and abroad, with the winners given exposure by the European Federation of Engineering Assocations (FEANI) and the World Federation of Engineering Organisations (WFEO), of which the Chamber is an active member.

In conclusion, he congratulated both the nominees and winners for their high level submissions and encouraged all nominees to continue with their excellent work. “Every one of them is making us proud of their engineering contributions,” he said.

This year’s edition of the MEEAs 2012 was supported by Bank of Valletta, GO plc, STMicroelectronics Malta Ltd and Arthouse Ltd.

 

 
Technology related foreign direct investment as a long term solution to strengthen economy

MEDIA RELEASE

DATE:  11th October 2012

In recent meetings with both Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi and Leader of the Opposition Joseph Muscat, the Chamber of Engineers highlighted the need for more effort to attract technology related foreign direct investment (FDI) to Malta. The Chamber encouraged the political leaders to give more importance to the quality of engineering education, to better regulation on government-supported green energy incentives and to provide more funding in R & I as a long term solution to provide better quality jobs and strengthen economic growth.

The Chamber noted the success being achieved by engineers involved in research and development. However, research has so far been generally associated with academia. The CoE believes that this scope should be widened to include industry, which would facilitate eventual commercialisation. In this regard, the Chamber highlighted the need for further funding in research and innovation, as well as the important and essential role that engineers with practical knowledge can play in converting the research into commercially viable projects. “We believe that targeted funding for research and innovation is a long term solution to strengthen the Maltese economy, through the development of home grown innovative products, as well as the creation of future jobs and economic growth” stated CoE President Ing. Saviour Baldacchino.

The Chamber encouraged the setting up of technical support centres made up of engineers from various disciplines together with other supporting professionals to engage and support the smaller industries and businesses which do not afford their own R&I facilities.

The CoE also stressed that quality within the educational system should be given more importance. It was recommended that the first level of quality control should be carried out within the educational institutions themselves. This should be accompanied by an additional level of quality benchmarking, by acquiring accreditation from well established institutions. It also believes that it should be standard practice for higher educational institutions to provide comprehensive information to prospective students allowing them to take informed decisions before committing to a course of study.

The Chamber highlighted the importance of foreign direct investment to the country, and emphasised that more effort is required to attract high technology and engineering industries. Such industries are normally associated with longer-term, high-value added jobs and generate a higher rate of economic activity and growth.

The Chamber recommended that government should maximise on the investment being made in educating and training engineers. Evidently, not enough is being done to encourage students to become engineers and to empower engineers to take up higher responsibility roles in private enterprises and policy roles in public institutions. The Chamber also referred to the need for updating The Engineering Act, which regulates the profession, to reflect today's circumstances. In fact, a CoE Council sub-committee is working on a draft update of the Act, which will include obligatory continuous professional development and streamlining of the definition and duties of the engineer.

 
Misuse of ‘Engineer’ is misleading

MEDIA RELEASE
10th April 2012

 

Following various instances of misuse as reported by the media, the Chamber of Engineers would like to clarify the definition of a professional and warranted engineer. It is unfortunate that the term “inġinier” is misused by the media as well as individuals in the political sphere, when in fact referring to technicians. The term is also used incorrectly by Human Resources Managers, who often give the title of ‘Engineer’ to advertised vacant posts which do not require the services of an engineer.

The title of Engineer is in fact protected by law. According to the Engineering Profession Act (Ch.321 of the Laws of Malta), “‘Engineer’ means a person who has obtained a degree in engineering from the University of Malta or from a foreign institution recognised as equivalent.” Furthermore, “‘profession of engineer’ means the profession practiced by an engineer who is a warrant holder.”

 

Last Updated on Tuesday, 10 April 2012 17:29
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