SIMPLIFIED ROUTES through the bureaucracy to ICE membership for everyone from graduates to mature candidates were discussed by Council for the first time last month.
Ideas from the Professional Development Committee included a direct route to membership for mature candidates via a career appraisal; reducing the 23 core objectives to 15 plus another eight of the candidate's own choice; and a bridge from AMICE to MICE.
The intention is to speed up the time taken to charter and find practical ways to widen Institution membership.
Adjusting the rules will allow specialist professionals such as academics, researchers, traffic planners, geotechnical and water engineers to qualify.
Vice president Mark Whitby explained the importance of introducing simpler, faster ways to bring people into the Institution to encourage growth and address the wider horizons of the Institution and the broader range of careers of potential members.
'For a healthy ICE we need to encourage people to take their review early. Those that put it off, don't do it at all; their careers take off and they see no need for it.'
Career appraisal for mature candidates, he explained, would involve a review of their CV and possibly an interview to assess how experience had compensated for academic shortfall.
On core objectives, the intention again is to streamline the process for candidates while maintaining high standards.
This would address the critical issue of lowering the age of qualification from an average of 30. Options could include the introduction of core objectives and CPD practice into the last year of university courses, more effective use of the ICE website to prepare candidates for the Professional Review, and email links with students and graduates to track their career progress.
The Professional Development Committee paper presented to Council said: 'We have to recognise that during a crowded early career, it may be hard for any young engineer to demonstrate that he/she has reached MICE standards. It may be appropriate for such a person to qualify early as AMICE. The PD Committee would need to develop an effective bridge from AMICE to MICE modelled on a new mature candidate route.
Council strongly backed the approach the PD Committee was taking. Its firm recommendations will come to Council at its next meeting.