ASTT e-News

ASTT e-News, April 2012

Dear Member,

ASTT e-News is broadcast to ASTTBC members and registrants, Honourary Members and our many partners and colleagues. ASTT e-NEWS contains the latest information about ASTTBC’s role as a self-governing professional association of technology professionals and the many services provided by the association. Each issue is posted to the ASTTBC web site.

Table Of Contents

ASTTBC AGM 2012: Leading Change
Our AGM Event Partner and Sponsors
Dues Invoicing Changes for 2012
ITP Project Update
Leech Joins Premier on Mission to Philippines
ASTTBC Appoints Compliance Director
ASTTBC Meets BC Deans of Technology
Leech Meets Bowman in Prince George
ASTTBC Supports Civil Tech Program at CNC
Minister Bond Introduces Limitation Act
Nanaimo Top in Techs Honoured
ASTTBC Award Nominations
Ted Nodwell Photos in Show
Practice Review Board: Titles Enforcement
ASTTBC Code of Ethics: Principle 5
ASTTBC at BC Economic Summit
Consulting Engineering Name Change
Building Regulatory System Survey
Onsite Wastewater Issues Paper
Smoke Alarm Campaign in Surrey
ASTTBC Consulting Opportunities
Scholarships Available for Tech Students
TechPRO: Toni-Lynn Card, AScT
Post Your Career Story
Message From: Grant A. Lachmuth, AScT, RTMgr
CPD is a Requirement
Professional Development Opportunities
Update your ASTTBC Contact Info

ASTTBC AGM and Professional Development Day 2012: Leading Change

Register online

Enjoy a full day of networking and earn professional development (CPD) credits at relevant Breakout Sessions, plus the ASTTBC Top in Technology Awards Luncheon.

Friday, May 25, 2012
7:30 am - 4:30 pm
Hilton Hotel Metrotown,
6083 McKay Ave, Burnaby

Guest Speaker, Cheryl Cran, is a leadership and generations expert. Her topic will be 'Generations in the Workforce'.

Cost: $125.00 (includes HST)

ASTTBC AGM Available by Webinar

The AGM Business Session (8:30 am - 10:40 am) and Breakout Session D - Professional Liability (2:15 pm - 3:15 pm) are available by webinar at no cost to members. For members living outside the Lower Mainland, we encourage you to join us by webinar. We are offering prizes for any employer site with two or more members participating. Please watch for an AGM email with details.

ASTTBC AGM Event Partner and Sponsors

ASTTBC recognizes and thanks our AGM 2012 Event Partner and Sponsors:

  Event Partner 
FortisBC
Gold Sponsors
Association of Professional Engineers
and Geoscientists of BC
BCIT
BCIT Alumni Association
Black Press
Lindsay Kenney LLP
Telus
  Silver Sponsors
Canadian Home Builders' Association of BC
Stantec
TD Insurance Meloche Monnex
Bronze Sponsors
Horseshoe Press
Kwantlen Polytechnic University
Manulife Financial
Okanagan College

ASTTBC Dues Invoicing Changes for 2012

Technologists, Technicians, Graduate Technologists and Associates, please note immediate changes to your membership dues invoicing:

INTERAC has been added as a payment option online or in person at the office.

Third electronic reminders were sent on March 5, 2012 and the paper copy statements on March 12, 2012.

We encourage you to pay your dues online.

Technical Specialists Groups Annual Renewal Fee for 2012

All Building Design, Construction Safety, Electrical Work Practitioner, Fire Protection, Onsite Wastewater, House & Property Inspection, Public Works Inspection, Registered Technology Manager, Site Improvement Surveying and Steel Detailing registrants will be invoiced for the annual renewal fee in the last week of April.

Internationally Trained Professionals (ITP) Project

ASTTBC received a grant from the BC Government to address issues faced by Internationally Trained Professionals (ITP) as they build a meaningful career in BC. In the past couple of months ASTTBC has:

ASTTBC is on track to have a number of new services and programs in place in support of the many ITPs who find their way to BC with plans to make Canada their new home.

Most recently, ASTTBC has been awarded a grant from the BC Government to become more familiar with education in the Philippines and in particular to assist ASTTBC as we ITPs who seek recognition of their credentials in BC. ASTTBC will conduct a full paper-based review and send a small team to the Philippines to get 'on the ground' and have a look at the educational facilities including laboratories.

"This is a great opportunity for ASTTBC as it will provide greater resources in the work we are doing to enhance the experiences of ITPs as they seek recognition and start to build careers in BC," said ASTTBC Executive Director, John Leech. "The BC Government is doing a lot to assist self-governing professional regulatory bodies like ASTTBC better serve ITPs."

The new Registrar for ASTTBC, Charles Joyner, AScT, brings extensive international experience to his role as project lead. "In my short time at ASTTBC I have come to realize what a great job ASTTBC does in its role as a professional regulator,” said Joyner. “While we have a great foundation in place, there is more we can do and the BC Government funding will serve as a catalyst to bring about enhancements." 

Leech Joins Premier on Mission to Philippines

ASTTBC Executive John Leech, AScT, CAE, will join the Premier and other delegates on a trade mission to the Philippines. The focus will be largely on education, with ASTTBC looking for ways to build a direct connection with education providers, professional and trade/industry associations, and government agencies in order to achieve a greater understanding of technology education and careers and enhance the experience for Internationally Trained Professionals (ITP) moving to BC. 

"ASTTBC appreciates the leadership of Minister Pat Bell, Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Innovation for his leadership in working with and supporting professional associations as they carry out their mandates to assess and register ITPs," said Leech. "Minister Bell and Minister of Advanced Education, Naomi Yamamoto, have been solid supporters of technology education and careers, which is demonstrated through the partnership with ASTTBC."

The Executive Director of the Asia Pacific Gateway Skills Table, Oksana Exell, will be part of the mission. Leech serves as a member of the Skills Table and it is this connection and partnership that helped set the stage for ASTTBC participation. 

ASTTBC Appoints Compliance Director

ASTTBC has a solid foundation in professional regulation, with certification expertise going back over 50 years. Since the ASTT Act in 1985 ASTTBC has focused increasing resources to professional accountability, including handling formal complaints against ASTTBC registrants. In the last there years ASTTBC handled over 100 formal complaints each year, with most complaints directed to the Technical Specialty fields of Fire Protection Inspection and Testing, House Inspection and Onsite Wastewater. For the next three years ASTTBC is focusing greater attention on professional accountability, which will bring such elements as mandatory reporting of Continuing Professional Development (CPD), practice guides (e.g. for client contracts), peer reviews, and practice audits. Some of this is already in place with a couple of the ASTTBC Technical Specialist programs. Registrants will be further informed of their professional obligations and guided in best practice.

To assist in managing this initiative ASTTBC has engaged on a part time basis, Ron Hein, as Director, Practice and Compliance. Ron is already serving in the capacity as Manager, Onsite Wastewater Registration Program. "This is a much needed addition to staffing at ASTTBC," said Executive Director, John Leech. "Ron has excellent skills in handling and managing complaints and will now have broader responsibility for managing all complaints." ASTTBC Registrar, Charles Joyner, will continue to have broad oversight of all elements of ASTTBC's professional regulatory functions as is called for in the ASTT Act and Regulations.

ASTTBC Meets BC Deans of Technology

Executive John Leech, AScT, CAE, met in Prince George at the College of New Caledonia (CNC) with Frank Rossi, Chair of the BC Deans of Technology (BCDoT), to update him on recent developments at the Association. Frank is Acting Dean of Trades and Technology at CNC. ASTTBC has a strong working relationship with the educational providers and finds it helpful from time to time to connect with the BC Deans of Technology as a group. ASTTBC's Executive Director did say, however, that the BCDoT has not been meeting regularly which makes it an added challenge to connect with the Deans as a group. Leech said, "Frank is doing a good job of 'holding the fort'. I look forward to more regular meetings with the Deans as a means of staying connected."

Leech Meets Bowman in Prince George

John Bowman, President of the College of New Caledonia, spent time with ASTTBC's John Leech talking technology education in northern BC during John's recent trip to the northern community. The two leaders have been working collaboratively to address their skills shortage issue in Prince George and northern BC for several years. One outcome is proposals by CNC for new engineering technology programs at CNC, in collaboration with northern colleges (Northwest Community College and Northern Lights College). "John Bowman is a real champion for technology education. He has connected with industry leaders who say they strongly supported technology programs at the college," said Leech. "ASTTBC is doing a lot to support and promote technology education in northern BC."

ASTTBC Supports Civil Tech Program at CNC

ASTTBC is supporting a new Civil Engineering Technology Program at the College of New Caledonia. "Northern BC desperately needs new technology programming," said ASTTBC's Executive Director, John Leech. "I have been actively working on this proposal for several years, with a focus on industry and elected leaders. It is now time for action." 

Leech advised he has 'talked it up' with most MLAs in northern BC. "Ministers Pat Bell and Shirley Bond, and MLA John Rustad have all indicated support for the programming at CNC". John Leech also advised he has talked with members of the Opposition including Advanced Education critic Michelle Mungall and area MLAs Gary Coons and Doug Donaldson, all of whom expressed interest in the proposal. 

Leech and CNC President John Bowman were recently interviewed by CKPG-TV and both talked about the urgent need to fund this initiative. "ASTTBC encourages Government to fund the program as soon as possible in order that CNC can launch the program in the fall of 2013," stressed Leech. Watch John Bowman and John Leech's interview on CKPG-TV:

Minister Shirley Bond Introduces Limitation Act - ASTTBC Applauds

The BC Government introduced Bill 34, the Limitation Act, initiated after extensive policy review and broad consultations carried out to determine how best to modernize this important area of law.

ASTTBC made several submissions to Government proposing changes to the statute to bring it into closer alignment with other provinces. "The changes to the Limitation Act define, among other elements, the ultimate limitation period, now much more reasonable for professionals such as ASTTBC members," said ASTTBC's Executive Director John Leech. "I congratulate Minister Shirley Bond for bringing about the change and MLA Ralph Sultan, PEng, for his lead role in advocating for the legislation." 

To view the First Reading draft of the legislation here. More information is available on the Ministry's website.

Nanaimo Top in Techs Honoured

An advanced home-building systems designer and a senior School District 68 manager were honoured with ASTTBC Top in Technology Awards in Nanaimo last month. Central Island members met at the Coast Bastion Inn on March 27, hosted by Executive Director John Leech, AScT, CAE.

Pete Sabo, AScT, joined the Nanaimo-Ladysmith School District's Facilities department in 1990. Over two decades, Pete progressed to the Senior Management position of Director, Planning and Operations. Pete's community service contributing to the award includes Rotary Club membership, coaching youth hockey and baseball teams, and membership in the Runners of Compassion - a group that runs trails together and volunteers in local events and for local charities.

Vancouver Island designer Larry Croome, AScT, now counts a Top In Technology Award among his honours. Graduating BCIT in Mechanical Design in 1989, Larry turned to research in engineered wood and accessories with MacMillan Bloedel. Since 1995, Larry has specialized in Industrial and Structural Design Consulting. He opened SIP Building Systems in Nanaimo in 2000. Larry creates energy efficient homes, through certification as an R-2000 Builder. His new goal is to achieve literally zero net energy consumption in his buildings.

Special guest Wanda Miller brought greetings to ASTTBC members from her professional association, the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of BC (APEGBC).

Signing a Memorandum of Agreement with the Public Works Association of BC, Executive Director John Leech stated "ASTTBC and PWABC commit to align the work of both, to deliver enhanced services to our respective memberships."  PWABC President, David Sparanese, AScT, lauded the initiative, remarking, "PWABC is a broad-based organization with many members of ASTTBC and other professional associations. We look forward to a much closer working relationship with ASTTBC."

ASTTBC Award Nominations

Thank you to all who submitted an ASTTBC Award Nomination. We had a great response to our request for Award Nominations. ASTTBC does collect Award Nominations all year, but for Awards to be presented this year the deadline is now closed.  We will make the Award Recipient names available over the summer and invite the recipients to receive their ASTTBC Award at our Technology Awards and Recognition Celebration on Saturday, November 3, 2012. Please visit our website to find out more information on all our Awards.

Ted Nodwell Photography in Exhibit

Ted Nodwell, who recently retired as Editor of ASTT NEWS, was selected as one of three featured photographers for Working World, a photo exhibit that explores cultural diversity in the workplace. The exhibit runs until May 30, 2012 at the Museum of Vancouver, in the free community display area downstairs in the Vancouver Planetarium. Ted served over 20 years with ASTTBC in various positions including time as Deputy Executive Director.

ASTTBC Practice Review Board Investigates Complaint: Titles Enforcement

Statement of complaint:
A Graduate Technologist member was alleged to be using the title ‘Engineering Technologist’ on their business cards.

Background:
While the member was a Technical Specialist certified and registered as an Onsite Wastewater Practitioner (ROWP), the member was currently only certified as a Graduate Technologist.

Investigation:
The member was sent a cease and desist letter by the Registrar, advising of the correct title/designation usage, with an order that they immediately cease using the term ‘Engineering Technologist’ as restricted under the ASTT Act and Regulations. The member consequently contacted the Registrar, advising that they were not aware that they could not use this title, since the Technical Specialist member had graduated from an accredited technology program.  The member further advised that they now understood the proper protocol as part of being a member of ASTTBC.

Discussion:
In addition to the responsibility for enforcement of the Code of Ethics and practice standards, the Practice Review Board (PRB) is responsible for the protection of ASTTBC’s secured titles and corresponding designations. Some of these titles and designations are protected under the ASTT Act and Regulations, while others are protected through federal trademark. Many new Registrants do not always understand the importance of using the correct title or designation to demonstrate their membership and certified competence with ASTTBC.

Outcome:
Since the member confirmed that they understood the proper protocol for ASTTBC members for the proper use of titles, no further action was required and PRB closed the case file. The member has since successfully applied for reclassification to Technologist (AScT) certification.

ASTTBC Code of Ethics: Principle 5

Members of ASTTBC shall uphold the principle of appropriate compensation for the performance of their work.

Amplification:

  1. Members should ensure that compensation is fair and appropriate for the services rendered, but are expected to put service above financial gain, quality above quantity and acknowledge a code of honour within a competitive spirit. 
  2. Members should not undertake a contract for anything other than a firm price, and be cautious of contracts containing contingency fee clauses. 
  3. Members should not submit any proposal to secure an engagement or assignment with a firm price or estimated cost lower than the realistic expected full estimated cost of the proposed engagement. 

Commentary:
Members’ fees shall be determined by the scope of work and level of service required. Cutting fees to the extent that would result in the rendering of an incompetent or dangerous service is unethical. 

Contingency fee arrangements may cloud the judgment of the member dependent on the size of the fee, for example, zero in the case of an unsatisfactory conclusion or disproportionately high in other situations. 

Offering services at less than cost as a ‘loss leader’ in order to secure future work is not recommended, particularly where the services might have an effect on the feasibility of future work. Potential clients should be made aware if a ‘loss leader’ type of service is offered, together with the future work expectation.

Complete Code of Ethics

ASTTBC at BC Economic Summit

ASTTBC is a Bronze Sponsor of the BC Economic Summit, Canada Starts Here: Taking BC Global to be held May 13 - 16 in Richmond, BC. The Economic Development Association of British Columbia (EDABC) hosts this event. Working with the Province of BC, the theme is Canada Starts Here: The BC Jobs Plan. ASTTBC Executive Director John Leech, AScT, CAE, will speak as a panelist during the Technology in BC breakout session on the labour challenge and availability of technology professionals. EDABC is the leading provincial association of economic development practitioners with more than 250 members, including Economic Development Officers, City Planners, Development Consultants, First Nations Bands, and Municipal/Provincial/Federal Government Employees from communities throughout the province.

Consulting Engineers Change Name to ACEC-BC

The Consulting Engineers of BC (CEBC) has changed its name to the Association of Consulting Engineering Companies - British Columbia, to align with the name of the national body. 

ASTTBC was a Platinum Sponsor of the 23rd annual Awards for Engineering Excellence Gala on March 31, 2012 in Vancouver, a premier event presented by ACEC-BC.

Building Regulatory System Survey - Respond by April 30

The Building and Safety Standards Branch would like your feedback on proposals to modernize the building regulatory system and introduce mandatory certification for building officials. They have posted a survey on their website that includes questions on each proposal, as well as questions on a proposed levy to fund some proposals. 
 
They have extended the survey closing date to April 30. If you have not yet had an opportunity to provide your thoughts, please visit gov.bc.ca and select the appropriate survey link (for industry or for elected officials, local government administrators and staff). The link also provides access to the White Papers and a presentation on the proposals for your review.

Thanks to ASTTBC Members for taking the time to participate in this important process to ensure our position is made known. 

Onsite Wastewater: ASTTBC Releases Issues Paper - Sets Future Direction

ASTTBC released an Issues Paper that outlines proposed future directions to enhance professional registration and Registered Onsite Wastewater Practitioner (ROWP) accountability.

"This 'plan' defines where we are going with the Onsite Wastewater Program,” said Executive Director, John Leech. “While ambitious, we are convinced that the steps outlined in this position paper are required to better serve the public interest. Since the paper was first prepared in September 2011 we have consulted with various groups including the Ministry of Health, BC Onsite Sewage Association and Western Canada Onsite Wastewater Management Association. We received generally positive feedback and have committed to consult widely and openly as we advance the initiatives in the paper."

ASTTBC has been hosting multi-stakeholder meetings (three in total to date) in which many issues, including those in this paper, have been discussed. "It is great to see the stakeholders working well together," said Ron Hein, ASTTBC Manager, Onsite Wastewater Registration Program. Hein went on to indicate that the next few years will see many added features designed to enhance professionalism and better serve consumers.

Minister Bond Announces Smoke Alarm Campaign

A campaign to ensure that every home in B.C. has a working smoke alarm was launched in Surrey in March. Championed by Surrey Fire Chief Len Garis, and Justice Minister Shirley Bond, this is part of a broad initiative to reduce fire-related deaths and injuries.

ASTTBC Executive Director John Leech applauded the initiative, "The Minister is to be congratulated for introducing the fire alarm awareness campaign. It will most certainly save lives!"

Leech went on to say that he and ASTTBC Manager, Fire Protection Registration Program, Brian Stegavig, met the Minister recently and talked about ASTTBC's fire protection program and the need to provide provincial regulation to enhance public health and safety in public buildings. The BC Fire Commissioner attended the meeting and advised the Minister that her office has stated that ASTTBC certification represents 'best practices'. The Minister promised to consider ASTTBC's proposal for provincial regulation of those doing Fire Protection work.

ASTTBC Consulting Opportunities - Is This for You?

ASTTBC is regularly engaged in projects ideally suited to someone who works on contract and is interested in short term assignments. Typically, ASTTBC's initiatives involve policy development or programs associated with ASTTBC's mandate as a professional regulatory body. ASTTBC also engages in projects related to professional and career awareness. Research and plenty of writing is normal.

While membership in ASTTBC or an engineering/technology background may be necessary for some work, it is not a requirement in all areas of the work we do. Consultants usually work from their home/business office and not at the ASTTBC office. Hourly rates are modest but the rewards are exceptional. Working with the professional association will provide satisfaction in giving back to the profession and undoubtedly open doors to other opportunities. 

If you wish to pursue, please send an email in confidence to Karen Taylor, Manager, Operations at ktaylor@asttbc.org. Thank you for your consideration and we look forward to hearing from you.

Scholarships Available for Technology Students

The Foundation for Education and Advancement in Technology (FEAT) offers awards to qualifying first or second year students in accredited technology programs in British Columbia. Selection is based on a written statement about career goals, community involvement and financial need. The application deadline is July 31, 2012. Visit the website for criteria and details.

TechPRO: Toni-Lynn Card, AScT, ASTTBC Council Member

As a youngster in the East Kootenays Toni-Lynn Card enjoyed school chemistry classes and getting her hands dirty outdoors. Inspired by meeting women working in applied sciences, she joined a high school Environmental Awareness Program. 

Toni-Lynn attended BCIT’s Chemical Sciences Technology program to pursue a career offering indoor and outdoor opportunities. On graduation, she found the re-emerging mining industry both hands-on and rewarding.

“My career started as a Lab Technician, Analyst and Quality Control Coordinator for a geochemistry lab. In the Research and Technology division of a gravity concentrator manufacturer, I supervised daily operations and testing of ore samples, and assisted with research to improve the company’s technology.

“Since January 2011, I’m enjoying my career as a Metallurgical Technician at the Teck Highland Valley Copper Partnership mine. My husband Lee is also a chemical technologist, and we expect to give our three-year old daughter Ashlyn a sibling this May,” Toni-Lynn says. “Relocating from the Lower Mainland and joining Teck has brought our family a wonderful work-life balance.”

Toni-Lynn’s career highlights to date include earning her AScT designation, promoting applied science careers with ASTTBC’s Women in Technology Committee, and volunteering for Science in Schools. 

Post Your Career Story

ASTTBC encourages you to join Toni-Lynn in posting your career story. www.techprofile.ca Connect with former colleagues get your name in front of 9,500 ASTTBC members and to the many visitors to the ASTTBC website.

Post your profile and if your name is mentioned in the e-News, it will be linked to your TechPROfile page.

See the guide for posting your information at the TechPRO website.

Message From:

Grant A. Lachmuth, AScT, RTMgr, wrote in email to John Leech, AScT, CAE:

“That was a great article and video promoting the implementation of a Civil Technology Program at CNC. I have spent almost 27 years of my technology career living in Prince George and several surrounding communities, and I think this would be of huge benefit to the economy and the careers of many of the younger folks in this area and the employers as well. Working and living in the Central Interior and Northern part of the province was a wonderful experience and I think if we educate and train these young folks in PG, they will also be more prone to stay and work there over the long term. Train and educate in the north, and they will stay in the north!”

Continuing Professional Development (CPD) is a Requirement

ASTTBC registrants are encouraged to review ASTTB's policy on Continuing Professional Development and use the web site designed to help members record CPD activities.

Professional Development Opportunities

In addition to the CPD sessions offered at our upcoming AGM and Professional Development Day, there are links to many worthwhile professional development opportunities, seminars and coming events on the ASTTBC website.

Following is just a sample if you follow the links above:

Extreme Makeover - Whole Building Retrofits: Vancouver, June 5, 2012.
BC Chamber Transportation Summit 2012: Vancouver, June 4 and 5, 2012.
2012 BOABC Spring Conference and AGM: North Vancouver, May 6 - 9, 2012.

Update Your Contact Info

To update your ASTTBC contact information, please use our online form.
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