I'm not saying you can get PDH credits for no effort, but there are some pretty easy (and often free) ways for professional engineers to earn PDH credits. These won't soak up too much of your time and, perhaps most important, you may learn something.
Even engineers who haven't gotten the PE license yet can take advantage of some of these valuable training resources.
1. NSPE Courses: The National Society of Professional Engineers currently offers 15 free webinar courses for NSPE members. If you're an engineer looking to move through the ranks in your company, some of these courses on leadership, critical thinking, communication, ethics and engineering marketing may be of special interest to you. Each of these webinars has a quiz at the end. If you score 70% or higher, you'll receive credits for the session.
2. Online PDH course providers: This is definitely not the free option, but it's a quick and easy way to search the topics that really interest you and get the credits on a time frame that suits you. Some of them even guarantee that the courses will be accepted by your state board, like PDHengineer.com and pdhexpress.com. One of the problems with this option, like the first option above, is that they are pre-recorded. You won't have the chance to ask any burning questions that the topic may present.
3. Attend conferences: Many engineering-specific conferences offer breakout sessions with PDH credits available. This is a terrific opportunity to get into a room with your fellow engineers and learn about topics that are trending in your industry.
4. Join professional organizations: Many professional organizations offer monthly or quarterly lunches with speakers who are accredited through the national or state board of engineers. Earn PDH credits while building ties with your fellow local engineers.
5. Attend Lunch and Learns: Some manufacturers reps offer free lunch and learns right in your office or at off-site locations so you can join other engineers. To qualify as an accredited provider of PDH credits, reps must ensure that their presentations are not focused on specific products but, instead, address problems that engineers may be facing. This is a terrific opportunity to ask pertinent questions, get informed and get lunch in the process.
No matter how you choose to increase your knowledge base, it is highly recommended that you do so. Continuing education can advance your career, keep your skills sharp, and even make you more marketable should you have to find another position.Blog image courtesty (c) Can Stock Photo / lisafx