The first organisation to bring together the province's engineering student community was the Fédération des associations générales des étudiants en génie du Québec (FAGEGQ). Founded in 1971, it facilitated the group purchase of the world’s latest piece of cutting-edge technology: the calculator. A second organisation is later created with a similar goal in mind: this time students sought to make a group purchase of a new technological advancement: a microcomputer. The Coalition des facultés d’ingénierie du Québec (CoFIQ) therefore emerges in 1984.
Six years later, the CoFIQ organizes the first Engineering Games, a competition that puts students to the test in all types of challenges, including improvisation matches, trivia competitions, and the machine category, which tests competitors’ technical skills and creativity. In 1992, the organisation of the Engineering Games becomes an entirely separate entity. Later came a second major event: the Quebec Engineering Competition (QEC), which offers a variety of events such as design competitions, innovative design, debates, and consulting engineering.
In 2004, the Engineering Games, the Quebec Engineering Competition, and the CoFIQ merge to form the Quebec Confederation for Engineering Student Outreach, better known as QCESO.
Its Mission and Values
QCESO’s main goal is to represent the interests of Quebec's engineering student community. Its strength lies its members who compose it and together count more than 23000 students. QCESO’s member societies determine the issues on which QCESO works at its regular congresses. Issues such as psychological health, student well-being and workload are some of the main concerns of engineering students. In addition, QCESO ensures that its two major events, the Engineering Games and the Quebec Engineering Competition, remain traditions within the student community.
The values of QCESO are those of fraternity, collaboration, creativity and innovation. Today, engineering is an integral part of society's day-to-day life, whether it is the development of a smart app, of standalone cars, or infrastructure - the profession is always in close proximity to society.
It is important to continue to train future engineers who are ready to face the various challenges to which the profession exposes them. This can only be accomplished by evolving alongside technology, by improving the quality of education namely by adopting content and teaching methods that are adapted to the needs of today’s engineering student community, which means collaborating closely with those most concerned: engineering students.
Affairs of the Confederation
Academic Affairs encompass any issues relating to the quality of Engineering in the province of Quebec, as well as the quality of education and the well-being of its students. The Vice-President of Academic Affairs is responsible for conducting research on this type of issue. They must understand the issues that students are facing, which is done through various methods such as surveys, literature reviews, interviews, documenting the practices of Quebec’s various Faculties of Engineering, and so on.
Then, the VP Academic Affairs formulates recommendations that QCESO can promote and maintain in hopes of improving the Engineering curriculum as well as the conditions of study for Quebec’s Engineering student community.
Internal Affairs deal with relations between QCESO and its member societies as well as their specific local issues that are beyond the scope of academics, such as Frosh, student services, etc. The Vice-President of Internal Affairs is responsible for keeping QCESO’s executive committee in contact with its member societies.
The VP of Internal Affairs also provides on-campus support for the member societies for their local issues, and offers them opportunities to engage with each other. For example, the VP of Internal Affairs organises various roundtables and training workshops, as well as providing members with tools, a network of contacts as well as advice. Finally, Internal Affairs also includes coordinating and mobilizing member societies around issues that arise at the provincial level.
The Vice-President of Public Affairs represents the interests of the members with key players. Advancing student interests is a key part of their mandate, the goal being to improve the quality of students’ education. The VP Public Affairs cooperates with the VP Academic Affairs to produce the Confederation’s lists of arguments. In order to achieve their objectives, the VP Public Affairs frequently meet with Deans, leaders of other student organizations, politicians, professors and representatives from the profession’s regulating bodies. Their job is primarily one of persuasion and follow-ups.
Furthermore, the Vice-President of Public Affairs maintains numerous relationships, prepares research and develops arguments and speeches.
Institutional affairs regroup issues relating to the governance and management of QCESO. The Vice-President of Finance and the Executive Vice-President are primarily responsible for institutional affairs.
Mandates in institutional affairs are numerous and include issues related to the organization of QCESO’s work as well as proper accounting of its finances. In addition to ensuring compliance with its legal obligations and regulations to be followed as much by its officers as by the participants of QCESO’s events. Finally, the organization and planning of the Confederation’s congresses and the meetings of the board of directors are part of institutional affairs.