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Local Engineers Join Order of the Engineer in ODU Ceremony

Eleven Old Dominion University engineering graduates were among 22 local working engineers who took the pledge on Tuesday, Feb. 17 to join the Order of the Engineer.

In exchange for making a promise to uphold the obligations of being an engineer, the nominees received a stainless steel ring, which they'll wear on the little finger of their working hand.

The obligations of an engineer are twofold: to serve the public and share a bond with others in the profession.

The rings were handed out during a ceremony Tuesday morning at Webb Center.

"The ethical practice of engineering occasionally requires great courage, and it always requires integrity," said Shannon Turner, chair of the local chapter of the Order of the Engineer, ASCE Eastern Virginia Link No. 199, who spoke during the program.

"Indeed, professionalism in its purest form requires integrity."

The Order of the Engineer is a tradition that has migrated south from Canada. A century ago, a bridge collapse into the St. Lawrence River so galvanized the profession that Canadian engineers felt the need to create a pledge that every engineer would recite, a promise to uphold the standards and ethics of the profession. "The Ritual of the Calling of an Engineer" was written by Rudyard Kipling.

The first rings were made from the wrought-iron remains of the collapsed bridge.

A similar tradition has spread throughout the United States in the past 50 years. Tuesday's ceremony marked the third time local engineers have been inducted into the Order of the Engineer. The ASCE Eastern Virginia Link No. 199 held its first ceremony at ODU in 2003.

Oktay Baysal, dean of the Frank Batten College of Engineering and Technology, gave the address welcoming the new members. Baysal said it was a special honor to personally welcome so many ODU graduates back to campus for the ceremony.

Baysal said many of the issues the country faces now, from the need for infrastructure investment to the development of green energy technology, will require a lot of input from engineers.

"As the world struggles with big issues … engineers will be a huge part of the solution," he said.

Baysal said engineers need to keep four goals in mind as they continue their work - striving to achieve professionally, actively participating in their community and profession, contributing to the betterment of society by doing good work, and taking an active role in inspiring a new generation to choose engineering as a career.

The following ODU graduates were inducted into the Order of the Engineer: Chadwick Edralin, Rick Godwin, Tatiana Goleva, Jessica Hou, Adam James, Scott Kenney, Margaret Kubilins, Kristen Lentz, R.D. Sandidge, John Thomas and Ken Turner.

The other recipients of a stainless steel ring were Daniel Graber, Eric Hess, Mike Hess, Wayne Phelps, David Speer, Jerry Spiker, Erin Trimyer, Dixon Tucker, Sarah Walters and Daniel Warren.

This article was posted on: February 18, 2009

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