Vol 4; Issue 2: Engineering Ring - What it’s about.
The Iron Ring. No, it’s not a title of a new movie coming out. It’s actually a part of becoming an engineer. Each graduating engineering student voluntarily receives an Iron Ring at a private event called “Ceremony of the Calling of an Engineer”. This Ceremony calls upon graduates to uphold the professionalism of the engineering career and vow to perform their work to the best of their ability. Also known as the Kipling Ritual, this ceremony has been around since 1925. Since then, hundreds have received their ring.
But what makes this ring special? What’s the history of getting an engineering ring? Back in 1900, the Quebec Bridge was being constructed. This bridge connected Winnipeg to Moncton on the National Trans-Continental Railway. Tragedy struck when as the bridge neared completion, it collapsed under the weight of a locomotive loaded with steel. Seventy-five people were killed, and it was pinpointed that the accident was created by an error in judgment by the engineers who designed the bridge. In 1916, another tragedy occurred at the same bridge when the center span collapsed while being hoisted into place, killing 10 more people. The bridge was finally completed in 1917.
The ring worn by engineers symbolizes the obligation to live by a high standard of professional conduct, which is laid out in the Order of the Engineer.
The ring features a simple, stainless steel band, and is worn on the pinky finger of the dominant hand. This way, as the individual writes, it drags along the surface as a constant reminder of the oath taken. Many believe that the rings are made from the steel of the Quebec Bridge, however there is no evidence to prove this theory.
Looking around the KE office, I found two rings, and when asked why they wear the iron ring, this is what our engineers had to say:
“Integrity. Obligation to the health and wellbeing of society/humankind.” - Mike
“To practice my profession with honesty and use my skill and knowledge to better servic the public.” - Selina.
Posted on Fri, November 6, 2015
by Kellie Dixon filed under