Quantity Instead of Quality: A Sabotage of Engineering and Its Education by Engineer Shortage Propaganda—

by Milton Alpern, Part.; Alpern & Soifer Consulting Engrs., Massapequa, N.Y.,

Serial Information: Engineering Issues: Journal of Professional Activities, 1976, Vol. 102, Issue 4, Pg. 457-469

Document Type: Journal Paper


This article presents evidence and analysis which indicates that the deterioration and impotence of our engineering profession, which most of us feel, is not an accidental phenomenon, but rather the result of a deliberate, long-term, concealed, but effective, Trojan Horse effort to produce an oversupply of engineers. The evidence seems to implicate the Engineering Manpower Commission's engineer shortage propaganda as unwarranted and as spawning excessive recruitment of high school youngsters into engineering colleges, thereby producing this engineering oversupply syndrome. Working in our supply-and-demand economy, this has caused economic insecurity and shortened career spans for many engineers and a general professional impotence which — of greatest importance — has hurt the general public. Analysis indicates that this Trojan Horse effort has effectively overwhelmed and negated most individual and societal efforts to upgrade the profession, and that it will continue to do so unless stopped by responsible engineers.

Subject Headings: Engineering education | Livestock | Deterioration | School (K-12) | Colleges and universities | Economic factors | Professional development | Social factors

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