Engineers are in high demand in Canada due to the oil and gas industry bouncing back and the strength of other industries such as technology, agriculture and natural resources.
Opportunities for Engineers in Canada
Every 3-4 months Provinces in Canada publish an in-demand list of jobs. If you have work experience in these professions, you are eligible to apply for Canadian immigration under these programs.
For example, in late 2017, the Saskatchewan Government set out their list of in-demand jobs which included:
• Engineering managers
• Civil engineers
• Mechanical engineers
• Electrical and electronics engineers
• Industrial and manufacturing engineers
• Computer engineers
• Software engineers and designers
How Do I Become Licensed?
To start your working career as an engineer in Canada, you need to be licensed by a Canadian Province. To get this license, there are some requirements that you need to meet in academics, work experience, language, good character, professionalism and ethics.
Canadian professional engineering associations regulate every aspect of the engineering profession in Canada and they operate in all Provinces and Territories. Engineering licenses are granted by these associations. You must apply for your P.Eng. license with the professional engineering association in the Province or Territory where you are planning to live and work. That association will answer any questions you might have about its regulations or official admissions policies.
Membership Types for Engineers
There are two kinds of memberships that are offered by every engineering association in Canada:
Engineer-in-Training: This membership status indicates that the first step in the licensing process has been completed by satisfying the academic requirements and meeting the good character requirements. People with an engineer-in-training membership are working toward gaining the four years of engineering work experience they need—including one year in Canada—to become a professional engineer (P.Eng.).
Professional Engineer (P.Eng.): With this you will be licensed to practice professional engineering in your area of expertise and take full responsibility for your own work.
Submission of Required Documents
When you apply to become an engineer in Canada, the association you apply to will need to review documents that give information about your education, work experience, character, language level and understanding of ethics and laws in Canada. Please review the association’s website to find out which documents are required.
The association will look at your academic documents such as degrees, transcripts or certificates for them to determine if you need to complete any additional courses or take any examinations. In most cases, your degree and transcripts must be sent directly from your institution to the provincial/territorial engineering association. If your academic documents are not in the language of practice of the province/territory in which you wish to work, you must also provide certified translations.
Work Experience and References Assessments
The association assesses your work experience record and reference letters to make sure you have completed the required minimum of four years of engineering work experience.
The format and requirements of your work experience record will vary from one engineering association to the other, but generally should include your employer’s name, the position you held, your supervisor’s name and a description of the engineering work you did. Your work record must be approved by a professional engineer (P.Eng.). However, you do not have to wait until you have one year of supervised engineering experience in Canada before submitting your application.
Language Competency Assessment
You must meet the language requirements of the province/territory you wish to work in. Language competency means that you are able to communicate effectively with the public, colleagues, employers, and others. Communication should be clear and professional, both orally and in written. The provincial/territorial associations use different methods to assess language competency.
The association you apply to for licensure will ensure that you have observed the values of truth, honesty and trustworthiness so that you can uphold the reputation of the profession as you work as a professional engineer (P.Eng.) in Canada.
Professional Practice Examination
The mandatory Professional Practice Examination (PPE) tests your knowledge of ethics and Canadian law as it relates to engineering, including contract, patent, trademark and copyright laws. This exam is held at least twice a year.
Getting Your License
When you have successfully completed all the steps in the application process, the association you apply to for licensure will give you your official certificate, a letter of confirmation and other items.
To conclude, there are many opportunities for engineers in Canada.There are many provinces that want engineers to apply for Canadian immigration throughout the year. Make sure to start your licensing process as soon as possible to avoid delaying your Canadian immigration application.
If you are an engineer and interested in immigrating to Canada, take our
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Julie Beeton is a Canadian immigration lawyer and Managing Director of Beeton & Co based in the UAE. She is regulated by the Law Society of Upper Canada.