What Does it Take to Be a Professional Engineer?

Becoming a Professional Engineer (P.E.) is a milestone many graduate engineers strive to reach in their careers. This title is significant for many reasons. To a client, it means you’ve got the credentials to warrant their trust and respect. To an employer, it signals your ability to take on a higher level of responsibility. Basically, becoming a licensed P.E. is an indication that you are at the top of your profession.

The road to becoming a Professional Engineer starts with earning a bachelor’s degree in engineering from an accredited university. Once a graduate engineer acquires their degree, they must gain practical experience through internships, co-op programs and entry-level positions at engineering firms. This part of the journey is crucial to gaining hands-on experience with real-world applications.

An aspiring engineer must complete a series of examinations, beginning with the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) Exam. Upon completion of the FE Exam, an individual is officially certified as an Engineer in Training (EIT). Then, after a minimum of four years of work experience under the supervision of a licensed P.E., the engineer can move on to take the Principles and Practice of Engineering (PE) Exam. Once both exams are completed, the individual will require signatures from supervising licensed P.E.’s to state that the applicant has the necessary skills and knowledge required for licensure. Once these signatures are submitted, the state licensing board will review the application and, if all is acceptable, they will grant an individual their Professional Engineering License for that state.

If a Professional Engineer wants to work in a different state, they must become certified in that other state as well. Fortunately, this process is not as complicated as the process of getting licensed in the first place. If your current P.E. license is in good standing, obtaining a new license in another state is typically as simple as filling out some state-specific paperwork and an application. In some instances, there is a state-specific exam that must be completed. WJH Engineering is very familiar with this process, as Walter Hopkin is a licensed Professional Engineer in the states of New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, and Maryland.

The newest addition to WJH Engineering is Mark Zelina, a well-respected and experienced individual with over 40 years of experience in the engineering and construction industry. Mark is also a licensed Professional Engineer in the state of New Jersey, bringing an insightful perspective to the way we go about preparing and designing our plans. If you are looking for an engineering firm that offers a wide range of engineering expertise, contact WJH Engineering today!