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2021 membership ballot: how your vote will shape ICE's future

17 May 2021

Elliott Webb, Chair of ICE Graduate & Student Network, explains how all voting members can support graduates in the institution.

2021 membership ballot: how your vote will shape ICE's future
ICE GSNet Committee members. Image credit: Elliott Webb

Early-career professionals have a voice which is actively listened to by people of great influence in our industry. It's this mutually supportive engagement that’s brought us to the proposals of the ICE 2021 member ballot.

As the current chair of the Graduate and Student Network (GSNet), I’ve been lucky enough to join ICE Council meetings several times. Participating in these meetings has given me great insight into the inner workings of ICE and the importance of our role in the institution.

As well as the GSNet chair’s seat on Council, there are a further three elected graduate positions, which give Graduate ICE members the opportunity to help shape decisions within ICE. The most recent example of this has been the establishment of the upcoming crucial ballot on graduate voting rights.

The importance of the 2021 ballot

This summer’s ICE membership ballot is vitally important for the future of our graduate and technician members. Members will be asked to vote on a number of matters, including Technician and Graduate member voting rights.

Voting rights for non-corporate members has been a topic of conversation in ICE since the 1980s. Several papers have been written and presented over the years.Through long-term engagement between GSNet members, ICE Council and Trustee Board, including a thorough debate in late 2020, we are now at a threshold point.

Council and Trustee Board recommend amendments to by-laws to extend voting rights for Graduate members on a number of key matters.

Although Graduate members have places on Council, we have lacked the ability as individual members to vote on a number of fundamental areas when members are balloted.

Following the most recent discussions, one ICE corporate member said: "It seems right and proper to me that people who are aspiring to be full corporate members should have a vote on the full range of membership of the ruling bodies of the body they are on a pathway to join."

Needless to say, I absolutely agree!

If the ballot concludes in ourfavour, graduate members will, in future, be able to vote on:

  • Subscription rate changes;
  • Election of Ordinary Members to Trustee Board;
  • Election of members to Council;
  • Resolutions at Annual General Meetingsand Special General Meetings (SGM); and
  • The ability to call for an SGM (under a separate amendment in the ballot, since Trustee Board and Council were undecided on this matter).

The increase in proposed voting rights rewards the work by many ICE members, across all grades and over many years.This is now the final push and graduate members need support to ensure we do not lose the opportunity before us.

What you can do

Corporate members hold the fate of Graduate members in their hands.

Graduate members cannot vote for the proposals most affecting them, so we need your support.

Please use your vote and please also speak to your colleagues and peers to encourage them to do the same.

Graduate members can and should make their voice heard in choosing two Graduate representatives for ICE Council when the ballot is underway. It is vitally important that we demonstrate our desire to continue our strong involvement in conversations at the highest level in ICE.

GSNet members must continue to be represented at Council to shape the future direction of ICE. You can play a pivotal role in choosing your representatives. Please use your vote.

Also talk to your employers and colleagues, professionally qualified corporate members of ICE, to let them know about the summer ballot and your views on how they can support the aims of Graduate members and, indeed, Technician members – the ballot proposal is for Technician members to be designated as Corporate members with full voting rights in future.

Grassroots-level engagement is key to encouraging voting members to take part.

We each have a voice which needs to be heard - let’s make sure the right people are listening so we can shape the future we all want to see.

Use your vote – find out more about the 2021 membership ballot.

  • Elliott Webb, highways engineer at Arup