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John K's right.

John K. wrote**************************************

I've been quite for this whole thread, but no longer... I'm a
mechanical engineer (a.k.a. Professional Engineer or P.E.). 
I have designed
HVAC, plumbing, piping, fire protection, etc., etc. systems
for buildings
but do mostly financial engineering alternative analyses now. 
I'm handy
with a wrench, but am terrible at diagnostics.  I consider
myself quite
normal and practical, but knowledgeable.  Of course I work
with and know
some engineers who are excellent engineers, but can never
see the forest
through the trees, if you know what I mean.

I also have a few friends that are P.E.'s who design big
machinery for a
living.  We took the P.E. exam at the same time.  Me
because it matters
greatly in my profession, they because it was a goal they'd
set in college.
We all passed, but their new titles have no professional
benefit for them.
BTW, you can challenge the P.E. exam in some states if
you have enough work
experience.  That is, you can take the P.E. exam without
having to pass the
Fundamentals of Engineering Exam (formerly the Engineer in
Training, EIT)
exam.  The PE is more practical than the FE exam, though it
is still very
academic.  I encourage all you "practical engineers" out
there to challenge
the exam (study first though) if it will benefit you

BTW, in MOST states and territories of the USA, you have to
have passed the
PE exam before you can legally say that you are an
"Engineer" or that you do
"Engineering Work."  Unfortunately, although it is against the
law in most
states to say you're an engineer unless you're a PE, most
state engineering
boards don't agressively go after people who do.  Try calling
yourself a
lawyer or doctor without passing the bar or residency and
see how fast
you'll be in jail!

The simple truth is, that unless you're a PE, you're NOT an
regardless of how smart you are or if you are more than
capable of doing
engineering work.  I suspect you realize, however, that this is
and is of little consequence.  I AGREE THAT THERE ARE
though...  What matters most
is ability and perserverence.

BTW, I drive an '87 5ktqw, a '82 urq, and a '90 V8 Quattro.

P.S. Obviously, there were no grammer nor spelling portions
on the PE exam,
or I may not have passed!

John Karasaki

Audi Quattro Fanatic

I agree 100% as an EIT geotechnical engineer who's soon to
take his PE exam. I don't think anyone who hasn't taken the
test would understand it's difficulty and importance. At the
end of my senior year of college I took the EIT test which is
the precursor to the PE exam. A lot of studying was needed.
There aren't too many other professions/majors where you
are tested on 4 years of college learning in one test (In the
American style of education). Then comes the PE exam. I
agree with John that in certain types of engineering it is vital
to be a registered PE. Mechanical is one, but even more so,
Civil is another. Think about that next time you drive by a
dam, or over a bridge, or through a tunnel. You can be sure
that no "badge engineering" went on there. By the way can
we just drop the engineer thread. It's somehow switched to
an engineer bashing thread.

Andrew Finney
1983 UrQ.