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Thread: Licenses to acquire

  1. #1
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    Licenses to acquire

    I recently graduated from Engineering school as an EE and took the FE exam already. Are there any licenses that are important to get as a newly graduate? I see on other co-workers business cards, they have listed as LEED AP, DBIA and etc. Any recommendations which license to go for?
    Last edited by charlie b; 06-13-18 at 05:28 PM. Reason: Corrected title to match intent of post

  2. #2
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    I suggest putting aside acquiring credentials until well into the future. Concentrate on getting work experience and learning how electrical systems are designed, built, and maintained. Stick around this forum and you can learn a great deal. I certainly have.

    To answer your specific questions, I cannot offer anything related to the Design Build Institute of America (DBIA). I do have my LEED certification. It is not easy for a EE to get, as most of the required knowledge base lies in other disciplines. Much of it relates to architecture and to civil and mechanical engineering. You are not going to learn that from a study guide, but through participation in project design.

    Good luck.
    Charles E. Beck, P.E., Seattle
    Comments based on 2017 NEC unless otherwise noted.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ansel View Post
    I recently graduated from Engineering school as an EE and took the FE exam already. Are there any licenses that are important to get as a newly graduate? I see on other co-workers business cards, they have listed as LEED AP, DBIA and etc. Any recommendations which license to go for?
    My opinion - get whatever certificates or licenses you can while they are easier to come by. The time is coming when it will be hard to make a living without some piece of paper. Once that time comes, the people that already have the paper will make it much harder to get. That is the history of such things, for good or bad.

    If you can get a master's degree of some sort while you are still young enough to have the energy to do so, that will likely turn out to be a useful piece of paper too.
    Bob

  4. #4
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    I ignored the 2nd PE exam for a while so I put some weight into other letters after my name to make up for it. I was interested at the time in fire alarm design so I got through several levels of this with experience https://www.nicet.org/become-certifi...alarm-systems/

    Then I took this because I have been heavily involved in data centers for 30 years https://datacenters.lbl.gov/dcep

    Since I got the PE letters, the others served me well, but don't carry the same weight and I realized I should have just focused on the the experience needed and took the 2nd PE exam.
    Ron

  5. #5
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    PE is really all you need. LEED - meh, can if you want. Might consider sitting for Master Electrician if your state allows. Or otherwise NICET or Cx type credentials.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ansel View Post
    I recently graduated from Engineering school as an EE and took the FE exam already. Are there any licenses that are important to get as a newly graduate? I see on other co-workers business cards, they have listed as LEED AP, DBIA and etc. Any recommendations which license to go for?
    See ron's post. If you are intending to specialize in fire alarm (and I wouldn't advise pigeon-holing yourself this early in your career) you will find NICET certification useful as a lot of specs we see nowadays are calling for level III or IV certification and NOT considering whether you have a PE as equivalent.

    Also, you may want to get commity with adjacent states, depending on the market for engineers. Here in NJ, it's very useful to be licensed in NY as well, especially if you are working for a company that has the Port Authority as a customer where a dual license is a must.

  7. #7
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    It really depends on your career interest.

    My interest is in electrical power systems analysis: Fault, Coordination, Arc Flash and other Studies, so I have the PE and a Master Electrician's license. I also conduct 70E training courses, so to be proficient and qualified in that area I got my CESCP. (NFPA-Certified Electrical Safety Compliance Professional) There are other memberships that go along with this line of interest like NETA and IEEE.

    Most importantly try to find an area within the broad range of EE possibilities that fits your interest and your career can actually be interesting and fun.

    Good luck.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by mayanees View Post
    It really depends on your career interest.

    My interest is in electrical power systems analysis: Fault, Coordination, Arc Flash and other Studies, so I have the PE and a Master Electrician's license. I also conduct 70E training courses, so to be proficient and qualified in that area I got my CESCP. (NFPA-Certified Electrical Safety Compliance Professional) There are other memberships that go along with this line of interest like NETA and IEEE.

    Most importantly try to find an area within the broad range of EE possibilities that fits your interest and your career can actually be interesting and fun.

    Good luck.
    How do you receive a Master Electrician's license? I was reading that you have to do an apprenticeship then apply for a Journeyman Electrician license. After that, then you can receive a Masters Electrician license. Did you go to a different route?

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ansel View Post
    How do you receive a Master Electrician's license? I was reading that you have to do an apprenticeship then apply for a Journeyman Electrician license. After that, then you can receive a Masters Electrician license. Did you go to a different route?
    I don't know how it is these days but some states you used to be able to get what was really an EC license (but called something else) if you had a PE. I don't know if there are any states that still do that.
    Bob

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by petersonra View Post
    I don't know how it is these days but some states you used to be able to get what was really an EC license (but called something else) if you had a PE. I don't know if there are any states that still do that.
    IIRC, NJ used to let you sit for the Contractor's exam if you had an EE degree and a PE. I believe that's done away with, although the EE degree is good for some of the hours you need (2,000? of them). Otherwise, for Ansel he'll need to work under an EC and put in the hours. He may get some credit for his degree.

    ETA
    Ansel, I just noticed you're in NY. Are you looking for a NY state license or a NY city license? Makes a difference.

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