I refer to the lead news story (NCE 25 February) 'An ageing profession?' I am one of the graduates 'lost' by the ICE. I became a Student Member of the ICE while studying for my civil engineering degree at Southampton University and on leaving in June 1988 transferred to Graduate Membership. I managed to secure a training agreement with my employers and at that time had every intention of becoming a Chartered Member of the ICE.
My initial Regional Training Officer was very supportive and encouraging and I worked hard to achieve all my training objectives prior to my CPR. When he retired his replacement, unfortunately, had a very different approach. When I received the unfavourable results of my CPR I asked for his help and was told that I was aiming too high and that I was probably only a suitable candidate for IEng. This negative attitude caused me to become disillusioned with the ICE and resulted in my resignation. The RTO may have been a good engineer, but as a training representative of the ICE he is not at all encouraging which is, presumably, one of his main objectives. If the ICE wishes to encourage Members to progress within the Institution the Student and Graduate base should be positively nurtured to achieve their full potential. Personally, not achieving my CEng through the ICE has not been seriously detrimental to my career and I am shortly to take a Chartered review with another Institution.
Martin Dover, 185 South Western Crescent, Lower Parkstone, Poole, Dorset BH14 8RS.