FILIPINO AMERICAN LEAGUE OF ENGINEERS AND ARCHITECTS... WHO AND WHAT WE ARE
By: Arturo M. Lucio, AIA
1998-1999 President, FALEA
FALEA was established in 1993 by Juny Laputt, Paul Lucero and Vergel Del Rosario. They are three Filipino engineers who felt the need to organize a group that would give Filipinos a better chance at success in the professional licensing process and promote its member's image and reputation.
Since its inception, it has evolved into a very active tightly knit group with focus on providing programs for continuing education and training needed to meet the requirements to practice in Hawaii. FALEA is a group of professionals with an extensive network of engineers, architects, surveyors, contractors and allied professions from Oahu and the neighbor islands. Although its membership is composed mainly of Filipinos, it is open to professionals of other ethnic backgrounds.
It has consistently attracted new members over the years and has a list more than 300 in its roster. The past few years, it welcomed 30+ new members, which is a strong indication that FALEA is serving a need particularly in the engineering and architectural community. The group has been united and guided by its stated mission "to promote a high standard of professionalism by fostering opportunities for career advancements and to promote unity, friendship, camaraderie and mutual assistance among its members."
FALEA has committed itself to serving the needs of its members by enhancing opportunities through professional developments and building strong ties within the organizations as well as the community. Its objectives & goals and the means to achieve them are well defined and planned as follows:
- To keep current with advances in technology, FALEA offers workshops in Computer Aided Design and Drafting and computer seminar on MS Word, Excel and Autocad.
- To enhance and augment the professional development of its members, seminars on building codes, project management and coordination and other presentations that are of interest to architecture, engineering and building professions are offered. Some of these presentations are scheduled to coincide with its General Membership Meetings.
- To create more opportunities to practice in Hawaii, FALEA conducts review classes for EIT and Architectural Registration Exam with its members serving as lecturers.
- To encourage and motivate its members to excel, FALEA recognize outstanding members who have demonstrated excellence in Engineering, Architecture and related fields each year. In addition to professional excellence the award recipients are judged on their personal character and contributions to the community and organization.
- To help in the personal development of its members, programs on improving communication skills are offered such as Speechcraft with the help of the Honolulu Downtown Toastmasters.
- To reach out to the community, FALEA awards scholarship grants each year to students entering or are in the school of engineering and architecture. It is actively involved in the development of the Filcom Center by showing support through participation in FILCOM's annual Fiesta Parade. FALEA is providing quality control/plan continues to explore opportunities in helping and reaching out to the community.
To promote units and friendships among its members and their families, FALEA holds gatherings such as its annual family picnic & Christmas party and ballroom dancing events. The annual banquet and installation of new officer and directors is held in September or October. Sport events including golf, bowling and basketball tournaments are popular with the sport minded members in the group.
FALEA is member of the Hawaii Council of Engineering Societies, It is a non-profit organization and depends on membership dues and fundraising efforts to support its numerous worthwhile programs. It maintains contact with the members through its Newsletter and through its general membership meetings. Election of new officers and directors is held during the first Saturday in August during the annual General Assembly.