PROFESSION AND CAREER AS A CHEMICAL ENGINEER IN USA

Q: What is your profession?

A: Engineer.

Q: What kind of engineer?

A: Chemical Engineer.

Q: Where did you finish your course?

A: In Manila,Philippines.

Q: In what university in Manila, Philippines did you finish your course?

A: Mapua Institute of Technology.

Q: So, your school is a well-known engineering university in Philippines. Since you are in USA, are you going to continue your profession and career as a Chemical Engineer?

A: Yes of course. I am going to continue my profession and career as a Chemical Engineer here in USA. I am going to continue it by means of taking the Board Examinations in Chemical Engineering and finding the jobs that will suitable and near to my profession.

Q: Did you take the Board Examinations in Chemical Engineering here in USA?

A: Yes, I have taken my Board Examinations in Chemical Engineering here in USA. There are two steps in taking the Board Examinations in Chemical Engineering. First, you have to take the Engineering-in-Training or EIT Examination then finally, the Professional Examination or PE. If you passed your PE, then you will become a Licensed Professional Engineer in your state. In my case, I contact the Department of Consumer Affairs here in California. They send me the application forms thru mail then I mailed them back after I filled-up the forms. I took my EIT Examination last October 27, 2001 at San Mateo Expo County Center. We bring handbook only, Perry's Chemical Engineers' Handbook, because the proctors are very strict. They will inspect your handbooks very well. The result was released last December 24, 2001 and it was a great blessing for me this Christmas Eve because I passed my EIT Examination. I received my EIT Certicifate thru mail. Since I passed my EIT Examination, my next step is to find a job that is related to my profession because according to the DCA, you have to get three to five years local working experience as a Chemical Engineer in order to get the Professional Engineering or PE Examination.

Q: Do you have reviewing materials or books in Chemical Engineering and where do you buy your reviewing materials and books?

A: Yes, I have books and handbook in Chemical Engineering. I bought these books at Staceys Bookstore in San Francisco, California.

Q: Since you passed your Board Examination in Chemical Engineering, do you have an organization or affiliation to your profession here in USA?

Yes, I have an affiliation here in USA, which is American Institute of Chemical Engineers or AIChE. Since USA is a big continent, AIChE has different local sections. I am also a member of American Institute of Chemical Engineers in California Section or AIChE NorCal and American Institute of Chemical Engineers in Nevada Section or AIChE Nevada.

Q: Are you an active member of American Institute of Chemical Engineer (AIChE)?

A: Yes, I am presently active member of American Institute of Chemical Engineers. I have to be an active member of AIChE so that I will meet and know other fellow Chemical Engineers as well as the officers by means of attending the meetings, seminars, annual conventions and plant visits. I joined the AIChE last January 2002 and I am started to attend the meeting since February 2002. I attended the following meetings, symposiums, and plant visits:

Q: Since we have websites and internets anywhere in the world, do we have a website about Chemical Engineering?

A: Yes, we have websites for Chemical Engineering and they are Chemical Engineering Resources and Chemical Engineer. I am always using this website in my research work and practice even when I was in the Philippines.

Q: Do you think that being a member of American Institute of Chemical Engineers will help you a lot in you career?

A: Yes, being a member of AIChE will help me a lot in my career. I will increase my knowledge and techniques of Chemical Engineering not only in USA and Philippines but in the whole world. Also, if there is a job opening then your fellow Chemical Engineer will help you to recommend to his office and you will find better jobs.

Q: Are you working now as a Chemical Engineer here in USA?

A: Yes, but a little because most of my positions assigned by Lab Support are Lab Technicians. According to American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE) being a Lab Technician is also a part of Chemical Engineering field. Thanks to have Lab Support here in California because they help me to give or assign a job. Most of the industries assigned by Lab Support are biotech companies. Most of the biotech companies are located in South San Francisco. I was assigned in biotech companies like ChemRx, Advanced Medicine, Telik Incorporated, Exelixis Pharmaceuticals Inc., Fibrogen, UCSF Institute of Neurodegenerative Diseases, Genencor International, Inc., and DepoMed. Presently, I am working at Amgen, Inc. as a Lab Technician thru Lab Support.

Q: You mentioned before that you have Masters Degree units in Chemical Engineering at De La Salle University in Manila, Philippines, do you have a plan to finish your Masters Degree particularly your thesis?

A: Yes, I have a plan to finish my Masters Degree if I have a time to go back to Philippines. As of now, I am a very busy person here. I am working at Amgen, a biotech company located in South San Francisco, California, as a Lab Technician. If I can get a long vacation leave, then I can continue my thesis work in order to finish my Masters Degree. I have a plan to go back to Philippines by 2005 to finish my thesis work and I send my leave of absence to Ms. Malou Jakosalem, our secretary in Engineering Graduate Studies of DLSU. I will save dollars to continue my thesis work if I have a time to go back to Philippines.

Q: If you cannot go back to Philippines to finish your thesis work, can you continue your Masters Degree in US?

A: I don't know because some universities here in US will not consider some of the units taken in Philippines. If they not consider my units taken in DLSU, I will go back to Philippines to continue my Masters Degree. I don't want to waste the scholarship given by DLSU to me thru Faculty Development Program. You should teach in DLSU at least 3 units in order to avail the Faculty Development Program. Let's see in the future what will be my career in the US.

Q: If you finished your Masters Degree in Chemical Engineering after you finished your thesis, do you have a plan to take the Doctoral Degree or PhD in Chemical Engineering and where?

A: Yes, of course. I will pursue my Doctoral Degree or PhD in Chemical Engineering after I finished my Masters Degree. I am looking for the schools and universities here in San Francisco, California. If I am going to take my PhD in Chemical Engineering, I would like to choose the field in Biotechnology or Food Technology.

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