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Engineers must support young talent

Media Statement -
Wednesday, 6 July 2005

Engineers must support young talent

Where would New Zealand industry and infrastructure be without our engineering expertise? And how will our businesses succeed in the future if we can’t attract talented young people into the engineering profession. It is essential to encourage students to take engineering not only as a degree subject, but also as a career option if we don’t want New Zealand to suffer from a skills shortage of engineers in the future, says Roly Frost, Institution of Professional Engineers New Zealand (IPENZ) new 2005 President.

Roly Frost speaking at IPENZ Branch engagements through out New Zealand will be encouraging IPENZ Members to think about younger engineers and how they can support them through their career.

His message to engineering businesses is; “For New Zealand to improve its existing infrastructure and industry - essential in keeping the economy buoyant - it needs new engineers coming up through the ranks. As a profession we must encourage professional development and make mentoring young engineers a priority."

“Already there are headlines that large roading projects are being hit by a lack of skilled engineers, and this will continue to worsen without our profession encouraging engineering graduates to become practising engineers, and then support their ongoing professional development. Engineers have definite skills such as understanding risk, analysing data, logic, and decision making. This is a good skill set and can set us apart from other professions,” he said.

‘IPENZ has been working with industry to have greater investment in engineering graduate training and development through its IPENZ Endorsed Employer quality mark, where organizations that employ young engineers support their initial career development. Also gaining recognition in industry are competence standards of practicing engineers benchmarked to international best practice, such as the Chartered Professional Engineer (CPEng), and Members of IPENZ (MIPENZ).

For engineers the current situation is good news. The demand for engineers exceeds supply and recent salary data shows technical salaries rising faster than other professions, with graduates having several offers of employment,” said Roly.

Roly Frost will be starting his tour of IPENZ branches speaking at a black tie event on Tuesday, 19 July 2005 to the IPENZ Auckland Branch.


Background Notes

FROST, Roland Bert (Roly)
BE (Civil), FIPENZ (Business and Civil), CPEng, IntPE. Present Position: General
Manager Network Operations, Transit New Zealand. Previous Position: General Manager, Civil Engineering, Beca Carter Hollings & Ferner Ltd.

Graduating with a civil engineering degree from Canterbury University in 1972, Roly’s first employment was the Ministry of Works in Waikato. The range and scale of projects undertaken by the Ministry through the 70s and 80s enabled Roly to gain a variety of experience in the civil, structural and geotechnical fields.

In 1997 Roly moved on to Beca, opening their Hamilton office before relocating to Auckland where he held a senior position as Beca’s general manager civil engineering. Roly continued to lead major infrastructure projects for Beca until earlier this year when he joined Transit.

In his new role Roly has responsibility for the operations of the total state highway network including engineering standards, managing network demands, and maintenance.

The Institution of Professional Engineers New Zealand (IPENZ) is the professional body which represents professional engineers from all disciplines in New Zealand. The Institution sets internationally bench-marked qualifying standards for degree qualifications in engineering, and serves engineers by securing formal recognition for their professional standing. IPENZ provides services for about 10,000 members.

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