In MICE that Roared (Letters last week) George Gray made some inaccurate statements about the proposed New Membership Framework and its introduction that we feel deserve correcting.
First, Mr Gray is correct in stating that Jean Venables (interview NCE 17 March) does not have the authority to change the membership structure, nor was she suggesting this to be the case.
In her role as chairman of the Professional Development Committee, she was presenting the work of the Committee and supporting working groups to the Council. The new framework was supported by Council, which recommended that the proposed By-law changes be put to membership ballot in accordance with normal procedures.
Secondly, we acknowledge that AMICE is not a new class of membership. Under the current system, admissions to AMICE are limited to those who satisfy the criteria for registration as Incorporated Engineers with pre-1999 HNC/HND. The intention, therefore, is not so much to resuscitate the class, but to use it to broaden the appeal of the Institution.
It is not true to say that someone who knows nothing about civil engineering would be eligible for AMICE. The reasoning behind re-defining the class was to make it possible for technical specialists whose work underpins that of civil engineers (hydrologists or geologists, for example) to be welcomed into membership.
The proposed By-law amendment states that someone eligible for AMICE 'shall have been engaged, in a manner satisfactory to the Council, in a profession that directly supports, or is closely allied to, the profession of a civil engineer'. They will also be required to satisfy a Professional Review with shared attributes from MICE.
Mr Gray can be reassured that he will have the opportunity to vote on these changes together with all other voting members of the ICE and we do hope that members will participate by using their vote.
David Lloyd-Roach, director of membership, ICE, 1 Great George Street, London SW1