Discuss readiness Fellow level

Last year I got my CEng through the IET and my Senior IEEE membership (SMIEEE) through the IEEE. I would like to discuss with some IET Fellows whether I would potentially qualify for Fellow; just to get a bit of a feeling where I am standing, Would that be possible? I don't have any Fellow in my direct network.

  • Well, there is the catch right there, since you need two of them to propose you.

  • That doesn't have to be a barrier, as I understand it the IET Fellowship team are able to find fellows to consider supporting an application. 

  • Hi Jeroen,

    Actually Fellowship is somewhat independent of (e.g.) CEng and other institute statuses. The key is showing that you have significantly contributed to the world of engineering, so less about how you do your work and more about what you've achieved in it. So e.g. it might be showing you've created an important engineering innovation, or it might be that you've set up (or grown etc) a successful engineering business.

    Having been through the process myself (and as many here know having spent FAR too long procrastinating before I did apply!) I do appreciate that it's hard to judge whether you're at the right level, and advice of "that experience is relevant, that isn't particularly" is really important. Best thing to do is:

    1. Download the fellowship application pack and read through the criteria for the nine criteria, and pick the two or three you think apply to you (only two are needed), and then
    2. Draft an application and find a Fellowship advisor through the IET. They will help you identify the parts where you've hit the criteria, and those where you might need a bit more.

    And don't expect to get it right first time! It is really really hard to judge yourself, so it's much easier for a Fellowship advisor who sees lots of applications to spot the good bits / bad bits.

    But keep remembering: what have you ACHIEVED, not how have you done it!

    Good luck,

    Andy

  • e.g. it might be showing you've created an important engineering innovation, or it might be that you've set up (or grown etc) a successful engineering business.

    And (realising I may have given the wrong impression, and one that's often wrongly given by IET literature) that's not to say you have to be Elon Musk! It's just showing that your presence has been significant at least in your business field (which could be quite specific), or maybe your local area, or a very particular field of engineering, or a particular community of engineers. Try to think of examples where people wouldn't 'just' say "an engineer made that happen" but would say "Jeroen made that happen" or "Jeroen's the expert in that".

  • Hi Andy, I really appreciate your help/advice. I just downloaded the Fellow package - I'll have a closer look at it

  • Hi Joeren,

    One aspect that Andy missed and another that he might not be aware of:

    First, the IET no longer have dedicated Fellowship Advisors but leave this to the PRAs, who may or may not have the right experience. Fortunately any PRA selected has the option of requesting the IET to reassign the candidate to someone who has the right experience (I have done this myself, though have subsequently made sure I got some training from the IET by sitting in on a Fellowship assessor workshop).

    Second Andy has given the impression that if you meet two of the criteria then everything is fine. That is only part of the story as you must have been meeting them for five years as the IET are looking for "sustained performance" (or some such wording - I haven't looked it up). This does give rise to strange possibilities where a manager of a technology department who has been providing the innovation for years may be eligible for FIET but his newly appointed line manager who decides on the strategic direction of the research and has more influence may not be eligible.

    Despite this, I would suggest starting the process now as even if you realise you are short of what is required it will give you the awareness of what is needed to meet the criteria, whether it is taking on further responsibilities or just waiting until a bit more time has passed. And as Andy says, get help from an Advisor.

    Best wishes,

    Alasdair

  • Thanks Alasdair, you're right I wasn't aware of the loss of Fellowship Advisors (or actually I think I might have been and had forgotten). That is a huge shame - as you say it is quite different to the "normal" PRA role, I for one wouldn't feel comfortable doing it having not had, as you have, further training. (I'm happy to give an opinion, but not advice!)

    And good point about the five years, I'll add another point to this which is that it also needs to be a recent five years, ideal is the five years running up to the point of application, otherwise I believe the guidance is five years within the past ten years. This can be really important for candidates who - like I was - are drawing from different parts of their career to build the whole story. Which was one of the things that pushed me to get my application in when I did, before crucial evidence disappeared into the distant past!

    Thanks,

    Andy

  • Hi Jeroen,
    The earlier advice from Andy is quite clear and to the point. I recently went through the application process so I will pay forward the advice given to me by by friends and institute advisors alike.
    It was suggested to me to list down all the acceptance criteria (included below) and put a few experience points against each. After which pick the 3 that seem strongest to you and send to an appointed advisor for comment. Once the three are refined somewhat then the advisor and you can focus on the strongest two. It is worth dropping in a few short points that might highlight some of the other competencies.
    I understand the IET can provide supporters but they recommend you find someone which has worked with you and can put some specifics to their supporter letter. Best advice however will come from an appointed IET advisor. Contact a Fellowship Assessor.

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  • Thanks Alan for your advice. I am in the process of contacting a Fellow Advisor.