Engineering class of 2007 joins the circle of the Iron Ring

York University's first recipients of the Iron Ring
Above: Graduates of York’s Faculty of Science & Engineering, class of 2007, show off their Iron Rings.

Six professors and the first class of students to graduate from three newly accredited programs in York’s School of Engineering, received the first-ever York-awarded Iron Rings, symbols of their entry into the clannish world of professional engineering.

The 37 engineers – 31 students and six members of York’s Faculty of Science & Engineering – were officially “obligated” at an authorized recitation of the Ritual of the Calling of an Engineer, a ceremony developed and written by English author and poet Rudyard Kipling. The event was held on Sept. 28 at Keele campus.

York President & Vice-Chancellor Mamdouh Shoukri, himself an obligated engineer who wears an Iron Ring, attended the first ceremony at York and provided great inspiration to the group in his remarks. Shoukri emphasized the significance of the ceremony and how its rich symbolism focused on the obligations of engineers to society, to the profession, to each other and to a commitment to live by a high standard of professional conduct.

Left: Shoukri told graduates he also wears the Iron Ring

“I have travelled around the world, and invariably someone will ask me if I am an engineer because they’ve noticed my ring,” Shoukri said.

The Iron Ring obligation and ceremony were developed by Kipling solely for Canadian engineers at the request of seven past-presidents of the Engineering Institute of Canada after a meeting in Montreal in 1922. The ritual is copyrighted in Canada and the US and administered by the Corporation of the Seven Wardens Inc., an independent body.

This first-ever ceremony at York, normally held in the spring before final exams in a student’s final year, included members of the 2007 graduating class, who completed their degree before the program received its accreditation in July.

The three programs that received accreditation from the Canadian Engineering Accreditation Board (see story in the July 9 issue of YFile) include., space, geomatics and computer engineering.

For more information on Engineering Programs at York, visit their Web site.

Submitted to YFile by Adrienne De Francesco, PEng., executive officer in York’s Faculty of Science & Engineering.