Well, now after reading both PDEng’s presentations in the last two issues, I have the following observations:
• Why does it take the PDEng staff so many pages to say anything of substance? ans: The more one has to read and the longer it takes, the more weary one becomes and the more one despairs of ever finding a resolution to the problem at hand.• OK so the staff can read all the recommendations made by three studies and make a chart summarizing them … WE can do that! What we want to know is: What are they going to do about the recommendations??? and when??? We want action now. Never mind “Business as Usual”. Suspend the program until and if we resolve this issue.• So many of the recommendations deal with the present bad relationships with students, faculty and employers, that one has to conclude that PDEng has alienated all of them!!• If all the recommendations were implemented and the PDEng staff were granted “the resources” … “required to move forward” as stated by PDEng Associate Director, then the PDEng staff would grow, become more entrenched, and more difficult to remove. This is exactly what we don’t want!!• With so many recommendations, obviously there are all these things wrong with the program … a total disaster … the simple solution … End it now! … Is this rocket science?
It’s time to take off the gloves and say what needs to be said:
Everybody and his dog and cat and hamster know that the PDEng program is a cash cow designed to extract from the Ministry of Colleges and Universities funds for being a 12-month-of- the-year educational institution. This is a flim-flam of the government for several reasons:• PDEng is not education. It is jumping through the hoops (busy work) for all students out on their work terms and it annoys to no end the students AND the employers (including me who hires and supervises 35 engineering students per year) by stealing time from their employment duties.• The truth is that we educate for 8 terms/14 terms = 57% of the time and deserve no more that any other institution that has no work terms and a summer off.• It seems ironic to use a so-called “course” that deals with “ethics” to do the boondoggle.
If we have to raise funds by alienating ALL the engineering students AND many employers AND many faculty, then we should choose one of the following:• do without the funds• raise funds another way
We had better pay attention to the reaction of the employers, or we will have a serious problem getting our students hired. This could easily counteract any financial advantage of running the program in the first place. We could then call it “PDEng for the Unemployed” … something to do while waiting in line to collect unemployment insurance or living on a park bench.
MacLean’s Magazine wouldn’t think so highly of us if they knew what was going on.
If anyone took the independent review down to Queen’s Park and explained what they are funding and how it affects those concerned, I’ll bet the family farm that the funds would be cut off.
Yours truly,Don FraserEngineering Undergraduate Office
Letter to the Editor