http://www.engineeringnews.co.za
  SEARCH
Login
R/€ = 13.29Change: -0.09
R/$ = 11.70Change: -0.05
Au 1207.85 $/ozChange: 1.57
Pt 1174.50 $/ozChange: -1.50
 
 
Note: Search is limited to the most recent 250 articles. Set date range to access earlier articles.
Where? With... When?








Start
 
End
 
 
And must exclude these words...
Close Main Search
Close Main Login
My Profile News Alerts Newsletters Logout Close Main Profile
 
Agriculture   Automotive   Chemicals   Competition Policy   Construction   Defence   Economy   Electricity   Energy   Environment   ICT   Metals   Mining   Science and Technology   Services   Trade   Transport & Logistics   Water  
What's On Press Office Tenders Suppliers Directory Research Jobs Announcements Letters Contact Us
 
 
 
RSS Feed
Article   Comments   Other News   Research   Magazine  
 
 
Jun 15, 2012

Let’s address our professionals as Eng So and So

Back
Engineering|Africa|Design|Africa|Austria|Germany|South Africa|United Kingdom|Building|Illness|Mackenzie Hoy|Matron|Reverend|Sister|Soom|Van Der Westhuizen|Viljoen|West Africa
Engineering|Africa|Design|Africa||Building|||
engineering|africa-company|design|africa|austria|germany|south-africa|united-kingdom|building|illness|mackenzie-hoy|matron|reverend|sister|soom|van-der-westhuizen|viljoen-person|west-africa
© Reuse this



Many people have their profession or vocation identified by the use of a title: Doctor, Matron, Sister, Advocate, Reverend or Father.

Further, they identify themselves by the use of the title. You will phone up and the person will answer: “Yes, it’s Father John speaking” or “Dr Soom speaking”. The titles are important – if you are in a hospital, you really want to know if you are discussing your medication options with Sister Claudia or the floor sweeper. The same is true if you hope for somebody to diagnose an illness – you would rather be talking to Dr Soom than his alter ego Mr Standloperboytjies, who is in charge of the rodent control plan, which is why he is wearing a white coat.

One would think that there would be an attempt for some of the unrecognised professions to have title recognition. For example, in West Africa, I am routinely referred to as Engineer Mackenzie Hoy (well, also C’est stupide d’Afrique du Sud) and the same would happen in Germany or Austria. But not in South Africa or England.

It would, I think, be handy for members of the public to know that they are dealing with somebody who has some qualification and, thus, having titles for an engineer or a lawyer would be convenient, I think. Or would it? One must look to what happens in any of the large commercial hospitals. They make the nursing staff wear ‘scrubs’ or the garb that they would wear when working in an operating theatre. The staff wear these even when they are in the wards where the scrubs are unnecessary. Why? This is to conceal the fact that, of the 12 or so nursing staff in the ward, only two are actually qualified nurses. The rest are nursing aids, which is to say they have a very basic qualification, if at all.

Members of the public call all of them Sister and nobody corrects them. In the same way, if we were to now insist on addressing qualified engineers as Engineer, then the result would be that the public would quickly find out how many people they deal with are, in fact, not qualified. If I meet somebody who says he or she is a qualified engineer, I will routinely check this up with the univer- sity or institution and I am often quite amazed at the bald audacity that emerges when I find that the person is not qualified. These individuals say: “Oh, I have much more experience than an engineer” or “I feel that I am an engineer.” It is hard to get the lay public to appreciate that there is a difference between a qualified person and an unqualified one – the dangers are so obscure.

If I say to the public: “Would you rather the driver of the school bus have a licence or not?” the affir- mative response is swift. If I say: “Would you rather the bus be designed by an engineer or not?” the response is less sure. If I say: “Would you rather the electrics in your building be signed off by an engineer?” the response is rather vague.

Naturally, things could get out of hand and even become cumbersome. If we took the matter to a distant point, we could end up with silly titles. I would have to call Cecile Office Manager Van der Westhuizen and Rachel Design Engineer Viljoen. (I could get away with addressing the rest of the staff as FI, which would stand for Fellow Inmate.)

Getting back to the point, I think that having the title ‘Engineer’ should apply to qualified engineers in South Africa, as much as it does in over 40 other African countries. There was an attempt to apply the title ‘Ing’ to South African engineers but this fell away. Now it is very unlikely that any of the engineering bodies will address this matter. They address so few matters that one more will certainly not be on the agenda. So we have to do it ourselves. From now on, I am going to sign my business correspondence as Eng Mackenzie Hoy, PrEng. I encourage all you engineers out there to do the same.

Edited by: Martin Zhuwakinyu
© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Other Terry Mackenzie-Hoy News
To mine coal in South Africa, mining companies have to be 26% black owned. To supply State-owned power utility Eskom, the highest coal user, the companies have to be 50% black owned. Mining companies which have a 50% black ownership will have an equal share in the...
You all have heard of John Glenn. Or not? You will know, I think, the phrase he used while waiting to launch on a rocket that would make him the second person to orbit the earth: “I guess the question I'm asked the most often is, 'When you were sitting in that...
As you may know, plans for the re-pening of the lime quarry on Robben Island are progressing well. An international firm of lime kiln manufacturers has acquired the rights to excavate the quarry and transport processed lime off the island. An environmental-impact...
More
 
 
Latest News
Updated 54 minutes ago Oger Telecom is looking at the possibility of selling its majority stake in Cell C, South Africa's third-largest mobile telecoms network operator, the chairman of the Middle Eastern firm told Reuters on Thursday. Goldman Sachs has been appointed by Oger Telecom to...
Updated 1 hour 9 minutes ago South Africa’s national oil company PetroSA, through its subisidiary PetroSA Ghana, has secured a seven-year $150-million reserve-based lending credit facility with a consortium of banks. PetroSA CFO Lindiwe Bakoro said the company was pleased to close this...
Updated 1 hour 12 minutes ago The $200-million ‘loop line 1’ project to expand the capacity of the gas pipeline from Mozambique to South Africa has been completed, the Republic of Mozambique Pipeline Investments Company (Rompco) has confirmed. Rompco is the gas transport joint venture set up in...
More
 
 
Recent Research Reports
Construction 2015: A review of South Africa’s construction sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Construction 2015 Report examines South Africa’s construction industry over the past 12 months. The report provides insight into the business environment; the key participants in the sector; local construction demand; geographic diversification;...
Liquid Fuels 2014 - A review of South Africa's Liquid Fuels sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Liquid Fuels 2014 Report examines these issues, focusing on the business environment, oil and gas exploration, the country’s feedstock supplies, the development of South Africa’s biofuels industry, fuel pricing, competition in the sector, the...
Water 2014: A review of South Africa's water sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Water 2014 report considers the aforementioned issues, not only in the South African context, but also in the African and global context, and examines the issues of water and sanitation, water quality and the demand for water, among others.
Defence 2014: A review of South Africa's defence industry (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Defence 2014 report examines South Africa’s defence industry, with particular focus on the key participants in the sector, the innovations that have come out of the sector, local and export demand, South Africa’s controversial multibillion-rand...
Road and Rail 2014: A review of South Africa's road and rail infrastructure (PDF report)
Creamer Media’s Road and Rail 2014 report examines South Africa’s road and rail transport system, with particular focus on the size and state of the country’s road and rail network, the funding and maintenance of these respective networks, and the push to move road...
Real Economy Year Book 2014 (PDF Report)
This edition drills down into the performance and outlook for a variety of sectors, including automotive, construction, electricity, transport, steel, water, coal, gold, iron-ore and platinum.
 
 
 
 
 
This Week's Magazine
Walter Hill
Eqstra Holdings was going to reduce its exposure to contract mining, but it was not yet ready to sell the troubled business, said CEO Walter Hill on Tuesday. He said Eqstra would not sell its contract mining business in a “depressed market”. He said it would be...
Subscribe to Engineering News and Mining Weekly for two years, but only pay for the first year.  The weekly editions of Engineering News and Mining Weekly will be posted to your preferred postal address and also gain access to:
National flag carrier South African Airways (SAA) is in an advanced stage of renegotiating its deal with European airliner manufacturer Airbus to acquire A320 single-aisle (or narrow body) aircraft. The aim is to replace ten of the aircraft still on order with five...
Worldwide, the main thrust in the ports industry over the past decade or more has been to increase efficiency. Traditionally, ports have been run by engineers and mariners and, in the past, increasing a port’s capacity was achieved by expanding the harbour. “That has...
What do you do when an elephant has a toothache? You call Dr Gerhard Steenkamp from the University of Pretoria’s (UP’s) faculty of veterinary science, Onderstepoort, one of only two elephant ‘dentists’ in the world.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Alert Close
Embed Code Close
content
Research Reports Close
Research Reports are a product of the
Research Channel Africa. Reports can be bought individually or you can gain full access to all reports as part of a Research Channel Africa subscription.
Find Out More Buy Report
 
 
Close
Engineering News
Completely Re-Engineered
Experience it now. Click here
*website to launch in a few weeks
Subscribe Now for $96 Close
Subscribe Now for $96