Power Engineering

Occupation Description

A Power Engineer is a person skilled in the overall operation of a power (steam) plant or process. This includes operation of high and low pressure boilers and related areas such as: water treatment, pump operation, instrumentation, electricity, fuels and combustion, air compressors, maintenance, housekeeping and refrigeration.

Power Engineering is not an apprenticeship trade, however it is divided into levels of skill and training, much like that of apprenticeship trades.

The Power Engineering skill levels are referred to as classes, with Fourth Class being the entry skill level and First Class being the highest level of achievement. A combination of work experience and course completions (either at a post-secondary training institution or by correspondence training), followed by successful completion of interprovincial examinations, allows a Power Engineer to progress from one class to another.

Graduates from training programs may obtain employment as a Power Engineer in most large plants or buildings in both the public and private sector; e.g., Government Buildings (Municipal, Provincial, Federal); health and educational institutions; manufacturing, production and service industries; e.g. mining, fish plants, pulp and paper,electric utilities, refineries, bottling companies, food processing plants, etc.

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The College of the North Atlantic offers a Power Engineering – Fourth Class program, which combines both theoretical and practical training components, to prepare students to enter the power engineering field at the Fourth Class level of employment. This program has been designed to meet the requirements of Industrial Training, Department of Advanced Education, Skills and Labour, for candidates writing Fourth Class Power Engineering examinations.

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Examinations and Certification

Power Engineering examinations must be written in the Province where an individual is employed or, if the individual is unemployed, in the Province where he or she resides. In either case, the individual must meet the Regulatory requirements for the examination in the Province where you apply to write.

In Newfoundland and Labrador, the Industrial Training section of the Department of Advanced Education, Skills and Labour is responsible for the examination and certification of provincial Power Engineers. The Department has adopted the Standardization of Power Engineer’s Examination Committee (SOPEEC) Regulations as the framework to govern the writing of Power Engineering examinations.

The following procedures apply for the writing of Power Engineering examinations:

  • Upon request, the general conditions that govern Power Engineering examinations and the application for examination are forwarded to applicants.
  • Application for examination is submitted accompanied by the required fee, and an examination date is scheduled. Applicants are notified three months in advance of the examination date.
  • All examinations are facilitated and monitored by Departmental officials. Multiple choice questions are graded and essay questions are forwarded to the provincial Power Engineering Examination Committee, comprised of industry representatives, for grading. The Terms of Reference for the Examination Committee can be found here.
  • Applicants are advised of examination results and such results are recorded on the Industrial Training internal database for Power Engineers. Completed examinations are kept on file for a period of one year in the Industrial Training Section.
  • Appeals must be submitted in writing to the Examination Coordinator at Standards and Curriculum in St. John’s within one month from the date of notification of examination results. Payment of the Power Engineering Exam re-read fee must be made online. Please allow 36 hours for processing.
  • Appeals are forwarded by Industrial Training to an independent examiner. Results of appeals are then forwarded to applicant.

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The Power Engineering occupation is governed by the Boiler, Pressure Vessel and Compressed Gas Regulations under the Public Safety Act.

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Organizations and Links

A Power Engineering Advisory Committee, with representatives from Industry, the Department of Advanced Education, Skills and Labour, Service NL and the College of the North Atlantic, has been established to address issues specific to Power Engineering training, certification and regulation in Newfoundland and Labrador.

The Standardization of Power Engineering Examinations Committee (SOPEEC) is a committee responsible for power engineering program and course curriculum development, standardized examination content, development of examination syllabi, development of recommended reading material, and power engineering certification that are interprovincial in nature. SOPEEC is currently comprised of one member from each participating Province and the Territories with the exception of Quebec (which is not a member), and the chairperson of IPECC.

The Interprovincial Power Engineering Curriculum Committee (IPECC) is an open membership committee that advises the Standardization of Power Engineering Examination Committee (SOPEEC) on matters related to examinations, curriculum and syllabi for persons pursuing careers in Power Engineering. Members of the committee include training providers of all Power Engineering programs, Chief Provincial Examiners, and interested Industry representatives.

The National Institute of Power Engineers (IPE) is a professional organization made up of Power Engineers and people working in related fields. To be a member member of the Institute of Power Engineers, individuals are required to hold any class Certificate of Qualification in the Power Engineering field (Stationary Engineer),and must abide by the Code of Ethics. Student membership may be held by anyone who is enrolled in a recognized Power Engineering Program.

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Contact Information

For further information about Power Engineering certification, please contact the nearest Industrial Training office.

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