dermendjian_nazaret.jpgThe college’s review workshops for the national Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) certification and Professional Engineer (PE) licensing exams may be one of the worst-kept secrets in Southern California. The workshops are not advertised, and CECS relies solely on word-of-mouth to promote them. But their reputation is so outstanding that year after year, students and industry engineers flock to the campus for the sessions, which are offered twice annually, prior to the April and October exams.

Before someone can take the exam to become licensed as a professional engineer (PE), he or she must pass the exam to earn FE certification (formerly called Engineer-in-Training, or EIT). The college first began offering the FE/EIT review workshop in 1995 and usually attracts anywhere from 15 to 32 students, in all disciplines. The civil PE review debuted in 2007 and encompasses three separate workshops—one for the national eighthour exam, one for the California Special Surveying exam and one for the California Special Seismic exam. All workshops are taught by professors specializing in that discipline.

“The EIT and PE workshops have been basically a badge of honor for the college,” says Nazaret Dermendjian, professor and chair of civil engineering and applied mechanics and coordinator of the review workshops. “Not every university offers them or offers them as we do.”

Dermendjian himself has received accolades as well for the workshops, earning the 2007 Outstanding Engineering Achievement Merit award from the San Fernando Valley Engineers Council.

For more information about the workshops, see