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Life of Canadian PI by Ethel Clemente Fernandez

First, they were student members

by Ethel Clemente-Fernandez

James Aquino Robin Allan Banaag Alexander Ladroma Maurice Petallo Roy San Buenaventura
James Aquino
Robin Allan Banaag
Alexander Ladroma
Maurice Petallo
Roy San Buenaventura

In 2014, the Filipino Members Chapter (FMC) of Engineers Geoscientists Manitoba established a bursary fund to support the chapter’s student members pursuing their qualification requirements to become engineering/geoscience interns, and eventually, professional engineers/geoscientists. Since then, $4,500 has been disbursed to nine recipients. The positive ripple effect of the bursary award is evident through the success. Five recipients who successfully completed their academic qualifications share words of advice to current student members and words of appreciation.

James Aquino, BS Mechanical Engineering, 2004

2016 bursary recipient – passed the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) Exam and registered as an Engineering Intern in 2017, currently employed as Maintenance Manager at Astroid Management

We all want success in our career and in life. The difficult part is to start. The first step is not easy, but it’s not difficult either; it starts with your heart’s desire. Set your goal, motivate yourself, and be systematic. For me, it’s all about thinking of my family’s future. They are my inspiration and strength. From there, balance your time for family, work and study habits. It is overwhelming at first, frustrating, feeling lost and stressed out. Don’t worry its normal!

And of course, it’s not cheap. You have to buy review materials and look for other resources. Good thing FMC is there to help. I received a bursary at the last Christmas party. My registration fees and some review materials were paid off.

During your review, once you get the pace, it will become a routine that will make things easier. Now that you are moving along, you can feel that your goal is within reach. Then, your desire to pass becomes stronger. You will get excited and it will motivate you to allot extra time for studying, review and practice. Finally, take the exam! Claim it with confidence! With all of your hard work and faith, everything is possible. Think positive! “Kung kaya ng iba, kaya ko rin!” That’s what I always tell myself. To all FE applicants, I wish you all the best! Mabuhay ang mga Pinoy inhinyero!

Alex Ladroma, BS Electronics & Communications Engineering

2015 bursary recipient – completed IEEQ Program in 2017. Currently employed as Design Engineer at Conviron Inc.

Pray to God to give you your heart’s desire. Remove all doubts and fears. Be fast, hardworking and always network.

Maurice Petallo, BS Computer Engineering, 2007

2015 bursary recipient – passed FE Exam, May 2016. Registered as Engineering Intern, 2016. Currently employed at JCA Industries.

If one day we find ourselves in tough times and we feel like we’re being hit the most, it is important keep our eyes focused on our dreams and on things we want to achieve. Some will not care and others will not believe. We just need to keep believing in ourselves while staying humble. Help will come in many forms. We simply need to recognize when it comes. One step at a time, we keep moving forward. If we continue to grow ourselves to the best that we can be, someday, somewhere, someone will see the best in us and the best that we can do.

Roy San Buenaventura, BS Civil Engineering, 1994

2014 and 2016 bursary recipient – Master in Business Administration, 2013. Passed Confirmatory Exams, May 2017. Registered as Engineering Intern, 2017.

I would like to express my gratitude to FMC not only for the financial assistance from the two bursary awards, but most of all for opening its doors for me to continue with the process of becoming an engineer here in Canada. Obtaining an EIT status by passing the assigned exams is an inter-play of taking part in FMC’s activities, being in fellowship with its members and taking the steps to act on the advice that one can get. I can say that these are the experiences shared in those undertakings that count most, rather than knowledge obtained years ago – though the latter is also important. Truly, being associated with Filipino Members Chapter, becoming a professional engineer is a reality.

ETHEL Poster

Robin Allan Banaag – BS Civil Engineering, 2012

2014 Bursary Awardee – passed Confirmatory Exams, May 2015. Registered as Engineering Intern, June 2015. Currently employed as a Technical Support at Manitoba Hydro.

With or without winning the bursary, I would be pleased to help and join FMC in its mission to assist fellow engineers who immigrated in Manitoba. This is not just because I want to show my appreciation, but because I also believe that we should help each and everyone around us to build a greater community.

The chapter recognizes that having access to bursaries like this alleviates the burden of financial stress, especially for those who are going the extra mile providing and taking care of their families while also pursuing this endeavour.

To continue our goals of supporting the professional registration of our members, internationally educated engineers and the community, the chapter will have its third breakfast buffet fundraising event on October 14 from 7:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. at the Canton Food Gallery, 1111 Logan Avenue. Tickets are available online: www. Events or contact to register.

At this fundraising event, we will also have an orientation session for the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam, as this has become one of the more popular options for academic qualification. Sharon Sankar, Admissions Director and the brains behind acquiring this option for Engineers Geoscientists Manitoba, along with successful FE candidates, will speak at this event.

Ethel Clemente-Fernandez is a professional engineer registered in the province of Manitoba. She is an active member of the Filipino Members Chapter - Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Manitoba (FMC-APEGM).