“Working together, Engaging Community”: That was the theme of this year’s APEGS 89th Annual Meeting and Professional Development Conference held in Regina, May 2-4, 2019.
or me the “working together” resonated with two sections in our Code of Ethics. 20(2)(e) calls upon each of us to conduct ourselves with fairness, courtesy, and good faith toward each other and others and give credit where it is due. Additionally, 20(2)(d) calls for us to 1) keep ourselves informed in order to maintain our competence, 2) strive to advance the body of knowledge within which we practice and 3) provide opportunities for professional development of our subordinates (anyone over which we have been given authority). This year’s Annual Meeting and track sessions reflected these qualities of good character, mentorship and continual self-improvement.
“Engaging Community” was reflected in many of the “communities” we are part of or impact. This year’s Annual Meeting was a great way to connect with our engineering and geoscience community with track sessions on leadership as we contribute to our work and home communities. A track session and keynote speaker raised our understanding about engaging with Indigenous communities. This year’s Annual Meeting and Professional Development Conference truly left every attendee richer for participating. Thank you to all organizers, volunteers and presenters for your time and efforts.
As I begin my year as president, I reflect on the many mentors who have influenced my career and life. Many who have served as APEGS presidents before me. Engineering and geoscience are truly mentored professions and each of us must continue to pay forward the opportunities and guidance our mentors have given us.
We must also never take for granted the privilege we have been given to self-regulate the professions of engineering and geoscience on behalf of the people of Saskatchewan to safeguard the public and the environment. The Engineering and Geoscience Professions Act lays out four objects that we are charged with:
- Ensure the proficiency and competency of our members in order to safeguard the public;
- Regulate the practice by our members in accordance with the Act and Bylaws;
- Promote and improve the proficiency and competency of our members;
- Foster the practice of the professions by our members in a manner that is in the public interest.
With more than 13,000 members, one might wonder how APEGS delivers on these requirements with only 20 staff members. The answer is that over 225 volunteers tirelessly complete academic and experience reviews, administer the professional practice exam, provide leadership on investigations and discipline, engage and support our future engineers and geoscientists and foster the practice of the professions by our members by developing the many opportunities for each of us to improve our proficiency and competence along with numerous other activities. Without this army of volunteers and the excellent support the APEGS staff provides, we would never be able to meet our obligations to the people of Saskatchewan.
I want to take this opportunity to thank each and every volunteer and staff member for all your hard work and time over the past year and encourage anyone that might be interested in volunteering to contact the association. I guarantee you will gain as much or more from the experience than you put in.
I look forward to engaging our members in the coming year as we conduct a review of our governance structure and support continuing professional development toward our mandate of safeguarding the public and the environment. Thank you for the opportunity to serve.
Terry Fonstad, Ph.D., P.Eng., P.Ag., FEC