The Iron Ring

One of the biggest things to look forward to in Fourth Year is earning our Iron Rings. This is what marks us as Canadian Engineers and is a great part of the tradition at Waterloo. The events relating to the Iron Rings all take place during the Winter term of each class’ graduating year. Some of the important events are listed below.


Iron Ring Ceremony (IRC)

Day of February 6, 2016

The Ritual of the Calling of the Engineer has a history dating back to 1922, when seven former presidents of the Engineering Institute of Canada attended a meeting in Montréal with other engineers. One of the speakers was civil engineer Professor Haultain, of the University of Toronto. He felt that an organization was needed to bind all members of the engineering profession in Canada more closely. He also felt that an obligation or statement of ethics to which a young graduate in engineering could subscribe should be developed. The seven past-presidents of the Engineering Institute of Canada were very receptive to this idea. Haultain wrote to Rudyard Kipling, who had made reference to the work of engineers in some of his poems and writings. He asked Kipling for his assistance in developing a suitably dignified obligation and ceremony for its undertaking. Kipling was very enthusiastic in his response and shortly produced both an obligation and a ceremony formally entitled “The Ritual of the Calling of an Engineer”.

The objective of The Ritual can be stated as follows: The Ritual of the Calling of an Engineer has been instituted with the simple end of directing the newly qualified engineer toward a consciousness of the profession and its social significance and indicating to the more experienced engineer their responsibilities in welcoming and supporting the newer engineers when they are ready to enter the profession.

More information will be available closer to the date including information about ring fittings and the ceremony.

5571284602_dff245f0fe_bIron Ring Stag (IRS)
Night of February 6, 2016

IRS is a Waterloo tradition that occurs for the graduating class every year in the evening following the Iron Ring Ceremony. This is the first opportunity for the newly-ringed 4th years to touch The Tool. Only graduating students with their iron rings are allowed to attend, and there is a strictly-enforced all-black dress code. There is a countdown clock in POETS which keeps track of exactly how much time is left before IRS for the next graduating class and you’ll often hear fourth year students asking “How many days ’til IRS?!” The day before IRS it is customary for the graduating classes to gather and celebrate “one day ‘till IRS”. Classes typically show their spirit with elaborate costumes and pranks that represent their time at the University.

How many days ’til IRS?

Tickets for this event will be on sale during the Winter 2016 term and more information will be provided closer to the date.


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