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#BigBeacon Twitter Chat – March 18 – What Does It Mean to be An Engineer



Join the Engineering Education Students’ Society at the University of Calgary on Wednesday, March 18 at 8pm ET to discuss:
What Does it Mean to be An Engineer? 

Those of us in engineering education are sometimes considered to be outliers or outsiders for not pursuing more technical and conventional job opportunities.

But is an engineer in project management still an engineer?
What about an engineer who becomes a professor?  Or a teacher?
What about engineers who move into careers within finance, research, social engineering, or arts?

Certainly, the engineering field is fluid and adapts its role to the needs of society. Bernard M. Gordon discusses how helpful labeling engineering may be, in a paper called What is an Engineer? (download here)

Labeling engineering as a profession and engineers as professionals, or labeling engineering as technology and engineers as technologists, or labeling engineering as a science and engineers as scientists, or labeling engineering as an art and engineers as artists may be considered to be useful approaches to an acceptable definition.

However, Gordon also considers the labels to add more ambiguity to understanding engineers. The spectrum of labels provides an interesting discussion area, is engineering all, some or none of these things?

The Engineering Education Students’ Society at the University of Calgary will be leading a Twitter chat on March 18th to explore some of these ideas.

Guiding themes will include:

  • What does it mean to be a “real” engineer?
  • At what point is an engineer no longer an engineer?
  • If applied science is engineering, then what is applied social science?
  • How should engineers be labeled: professionals, technologists, scientists, or artists?

We encourage participation from anyone who feels like an outsider in their field, or who is just interested in what it means to be an engineer.  Join us March 18th at 8pm on Twitter using the hashtag #BigBeacon.

How to Twitter Chat

If you’ve never Twitter chatted before, don’t worry; it’s very easy! First, get a Twitter account if you don’t already have one, and log in. At 8 PM ET on Wednesday go to and type #BigBeacon into the search box on Twitter. Thereafter all the tweets with the hashtag #BigBeacon will show up on your Twitter page. To participate, simply express your opinion by sending a tweet, and be sure to append the hashtag #BigBeacon so other members of the Twitter Chat see you are posting. Alternatively, automate the hashtag search and append feature by using the free service Tchat at

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