Clifford E. Mkong is an electrical engineer who has more than three years of experience. He has worked with Genesis Engineering and For All Inc. under the capacity of a Field Engineer and Electrical Technician where he has had the privilege to participate in the realisation of many projects including solar electrification schemes in both rural and urban areas in several regions of the country.
TS: Welcome to our chat room.
C: Thank you. It’s an honour.
TS: When we invited you to our chat room, I mentioned it to a mutual friend of ours and he said, “Don’t forget to ask him about his graduation hat.” What was peculiar about the hat?
C: It was coupled with an electronic circuit that had LEDs flashing around it in a programmed pattern and a scrolling display in front (Laughs) It caught the attention of many. that read “We Step Up, We Transform”.
TS: That must have caused heads to turn in your direction. Why electrical engineering out of the multitude of options you had?
C: At a young age, I became mesmerized by electricity and wanted to know how it all works. Its incredible potential had me daydreaming every morning on my way to school, so I knew early on what I’d study in college. The drive became even stronger when I noticed how backward we are technologically and how lacking we are in experts and professionals in the field.
What it Takes
TS: What does it take to be one? When one hears engineer attached to a name or job, we know it’s a huge deal.
C: Becoming an electrical engineer requires training, commitment, and the willingness to wonder about challenging questions. Creativity and industriousness too are vital. Generally, you need to acquire at least a bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering. Some countries require you to pass a state exam to work as an Electrical Engineer.
To work independently, most countries require you to have a Professional Engineer’s Licence. This is usually gained after at least four years of practice as an engineer.
TS: So working with electricity and circuits didn’t scare you? Most people I know have at least one unpleasant experience with electricity — electric shocks.
C: Working with electricity is risky and can cause serious damage when the right safety rules are not applied. There are a number of these rules that are put in place depending on what is at hand to prevent both material and human loss, so as long as these rules are in check, I am not scared.
TS: Is it possible to be an electrical engineer without formal training?
C: There have been cases where people have worked their way up to be labeled Electrical Engineers by simply practicing and acquiring experience. However, I will say “No”, because in most places, the term Electrical Engineer is protected. So at least a bachelor’s degree and a state exam certification are required to be called an engineer. There are cases where people have been imprisoned for not meeting these requirements but labeled themselves electrical engineers.
TS: Does this imply that formal education is important in this practice?
C: Formal education is very important. It enhances one’s understanding and skills. Most of the fieldwork requires a thorough understanding and communication engineering principles. Without this understanding, mistakes are inevitable and slight mistakes in engineering can be very costly. In my own experience, I got to learn much more than just engineering, but other areas that significantly enhanced my engineering career which included Management, Law and Business Communication.
The Job Description
TS: Is there a significant difference between an electrician and an electrical engineer?
C: Yes. There is a significant difference in the education and training needed to pursue each title, as well as their job activities. Electrical engineers design, test and install electrical equipment, control systems and power distribution networks. They can have electricians working under them to help repair, troubleshoot, and connect electrical systems, accessories, and wiring.
After completing high school, in a number of countries, you must enroll in a four-year electrical engineering degree program to be an electrical engineer while an electrician may undergo on-the-job training, apprenticeships, or certificate programs at a trade school. As their education level differs, the scope of work also changes.
TS: What are the services provided by an electrical engineer?
C: Hmm let’s see!
- Repairs, installs, replaces, and tests electrical circuits using appropriate tools and testing instruments.
- Reads, employs, and updates electrical panel schedules, control drawings, and building schematics.
- Reading and interpreting electrical and electronic circuit blueprints, diagrams, and schematics.
- Troubleshooting and repairing malfunctioning equipment, appliances, and apparatus.
- Assembling, evaluating, testing, and maintaining electrical or electronic wiring and equipment.
- Direct the installation and testing of electrical equipment
- Manage electrical projects to ensure work is completed well, on time and within budget
Getting in Touch
TS: How do I contact you if I need your services?
C: I can be reached via the phone number +237 670009406, or our temporary website cliffselectrify.wordpress.com, or our email firstname.lastname@example.org
TS: Thanks for your time. Our doors are open so don’t hesitate to come and share any developments with us.
C: Definitely! Thanks for having me. It was a pleasure.