Do I have to be in the Engineering Transfer program in order to become an engineer?
No! The ETP is designed for students who want to do their first year engineering courses in one year and immediately transfer to UBC or UVic. There are only 24 ETP seats at UFV, but there are usually more than two dozen students not in the Engineering Transfer Program who are planning to compete for second year engineering positions by either taking two years to do the courses of the ETP or transferring from general science.
If I don’t have to be in the ETP, what is it for?
If you are in the ETP at UFV you are guaranteed access to the courses you need to complete the program in one year. If you are not in the program you do not have guaranteed access to the courses and may not be able to complete all the courses in one year.
Who designed the Engineering Transfer Program?
The initial program was set up in consultation with UBC. It is a list of courses similar enough to the UBC courses that students completing the 13 ETP courses at UFV could be considered equivalent to students doing first year engineering at UBC. More recently a similar program was set up with UVic. Engineering at UVic has a different emphasis than UBC’s, and they have slightly different requirements, specifically less chemistry and more computing.
Will not being in the ETP hurt my chances of transferring to UBC or UVic?
The label “Engineering Transfer Program” is unimportant when you transfer. The other universities only care about the courses you took and don’t care if you took them as an ETP student or as a General Sciences student.
Is there an advantage to me going to UBC or UVic directly and doing first year there?
There is nothing wrong with doing this. You will get into the UBC or UVic experience sooner and these are superb institutions. However, be aware that you need high marks to get into second year and many students find it harder to maintain good grades in their first year at the larger institutions.
What are my options for getting into second year Engineering?
There are three common options:
Do an ETP in one year (either at UFV, UBC, UVic, or other institution). This is the fastest way through and is probably the best option for strong students. It has the advantage of giving you guaranteed access to second year if you complete all the courses with a minimum required GPA. It has the disadvantage of being a tough program. It requires doing 13 UFV courses in one year.
Do the ETP in two years. The advantage is that it is an easier pace and you can get all your second year math courses done as well. You are not guaranteed access to second year UBC, though you are at UFVic engineering. You must meet the GPA requirements in both cases. The disadvantages are that it takes longer and that you will not be guaranteed access to the UFV courses and may not be able to get all your classes.
Do one year of general sciences and attempt to transfer to UBC from there. This is the easiest option, but you will eventually have to make up missing courses, and acceptance into second year is not guaranteed. As with students doing all the courses over two years, you will be put into a pool with other students trying to get into Engineering this way. After all ETP students are admitted, the remaining second year seats are made available to people in this pool, and places are awarded based on GPA. Though some years the admission GPA has been as low as 2.5, it has been 3.2 at other times and may be set to any value as determined by UBC.
Do students who start at UBC or UVic have an advantage getting into second year?
No. There is a province-wide policy that transfer students should not be disadvantaged compared to those who are already at the institution. All students who make the qualifications for second year are put into the same pool and compete based on GPA.
How many people get through the UFV ETP program?
The numbers vary from year to year. Sometimes more than half complete all the courses with the required GPA, and sometimes as few as one third finish with all 13 courses. The actual success rate of the students though is much higher. Those that only drop one course are still allowed to enter UBC second year engineering though they may not meet the pre-requisites for all their second year courses. Others choose to drop out of the program and take the program over two years instead; technically they failed to complete the UFV program though they meet the UBC and UVic requirements. .A few find that Engineering is not for them and choose other career paths. About 10 per cent find they are really scientists and take Physics or Math degrees instead and may find themselves doing work similar to Engineering, but with emphasis on the science and not the product development. Each year only one or two students “drop out” and don’t continue to a degree.
What are my options if things don’t go well for me in my courses?
You have many options:
If you still want to go into engineering through the ETP, you will have to take more time to complete the courses. You are usually best off to put your maximum effort in your Math and Physics courses; the other courses can usually be delayed into a second year at UFV without causing you major disruptions.
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If you want to go into Engineering as soon as possible and may not be able to get sufficiently high marks on your core courses, you can concentrate on you core science courses and try applying to Engineering from General Science.
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If you don’t find any of the Engineering specialties as interesting as you first thought, you may want to consider a related field, such as Wood Products Processing at UBC. Wood Products is not an Engineering discipline (though it was originally designed to be one and is very similar) and has entrance requirements slightly different than second year Engineering.
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If you find you are not as interested in Engineering as you initially expected (or if your marks are lower than you need to go to second year) your first year Engineering contains within it most of the first year science program, and you can complete a Chemistry, Math, or Physics degree in three more years.
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Can I do the ETP and a part time job?
Though there is no rule against it, it is a very bad idea. Based on student time logs, the program takes about 50 hours per week, and it can go up to 60 hours per week near exam time. You will not have time for a part-time job.
Who regulates Engineers?
There is an organization, APEG (Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of BC). They also have an extensive student support program.