The Welding Institute

Case Study: EUR ING Charles Schneider MA CEng FInstNDT MWeldI

9 Mar 2023 10:30 AM | Anonymous

In celebration of The Welding Institute’s 100 year anniversary, we interviewed TWI Technology Fellow Eur Ing Charles Schneider MA CEng FInstNDT MWeldI to find out more about his appointment as a TWI Technology Fellow, in 2015, and how his Membership, since 2007, with The Welding Institute has supported his career.

Engineering and Career Background

Achieving an undergraduate degree in Mathematics from Oxford University in 1984, Eur Ing Charles Schneider MA CEng FInstNDT MWeldI later joined TWI in 1997 and currently works in the Non-destructive Evaluation (NDE) Group with his main responsibilities including:

  • Assessment of NDE reliability
  • Inspection qualification / performance demonstration
  • NDE input to Engineering Critical Assessment (e.g. for BS 7910)
  • Statistical analysis (across TWI)

Why did you choose a career in engineering?

I originally joined the Central Electricity Generating Board because I wanted to use my mathematical skills to solve practical problems. During my 11 years with the power industry, I very much focussed on the development and application of theoretical models of ultrasonic testing, mostly for the nuclear sector. Joining TWI brought me into contact with other inspection methods and with other engineering disciplines, e.g. structural assessment and welding engineering. This naturally led me to apply my skills more broadly, e.g:

  • Developing statistical models for the reliability of other NDE methods
  • Developing TWI’s Best Practice Guide on the statistical analysis of fatigue data
  • Providing advice on NDE input to structural assessment
  • Inspection qualification
  • Use of statistical methods to extrapolate corrosion mapping data both in time and to uninspected regions of large plant items

Early Professional Membership

Why did you initially join The Welding Institute?

My manager at TWI recommended that I become a Professional Member during my annual appraisal. I was already a Professional Member of an Institute in my specialist area, but I felt that becoming a Professional Member of The Welding Institute would further strengthen my CV and would allow me to network with welding professionals.

Tell us a bit about the process of becoming a Member of The Welding Institute:

When I became a Professional Member, my career was already well-established and I was already CEng registered. The application was therefore relatively straightforward, simply based on the application form, an extended CV, training report, organogram and a list of my publications (authenticated as necessary).

Professional Registration

Are you professionally registered?


  • Chartered Engineer (CEng) – 2003
  • European Engineer (EurIng) – 2004

What was the process of achieving Professional Registration like and why did you choose to become professionally registered?

Again, my manager at TWI recommended that I become professionally registered during an annual appraisal. I also felt that this would strengthen my CV and widen the range of TWI contract work that I could undertake.

My career was already well-established when I applied for Professional Registration, so I followed a ‘mature candidate’ route, which was relatively straightforward, i.e. application form and interview. The interview process helped me understand the Engineering Council competences and what type of evidence is needed to demonstrate them. This insight helped me later in my career when, in turn, I became a mentor for other CEng applicants.

Current Membership

How has professional membership/registration helped you throughout your career?

Some tender processes require CEng or equivalent. It also helps in demonstrating professional credibility, e.g. it can help in securing contract work as an expert witness in litigation cases.

What are your core involvements with The Welding Institute, what do they entail and why do you undertake them?

  • I often attend Branch meetings, Technical Group meetings and technical webinars
  • I have delivered presentations at various Welding Institute events, e.g. at Structural Integrity, Offshore Oil and Gas, Pressure and Process Plant, and Welding Processes Technical Group meetings
  • I have published several technical papers in TWI’s Bulletin journal
  • I am a registered mentor with IMechE’s Monitored Professional Development Scheme (MPDS)
  • I have been a mentor to a number of TWI staff, either through MPDS or more informally, e.g. as agreed through TWI’s appraisal system

What membership benefits do you use the most and find the most helpful and why?

Branch meetings, Technical Group meetings and technical webinars provide opportunities for professional networking with people outside my own specialism who I might not otherwise meet. These events also help in gaining a broader appreciation of different technical areas.

TWI Technology Fellowship

As a TWI Technology Fellow, you were selected by TWI’s Executive Team due to you having “made significant impact through technical excellence, expertise and knowledge transfer, and commitment to the development and coaching of colleagues.”

How do you think your TWI Technology Fellowship and Professional Membership of The Welding Institute have aided one another?

Professional Membership status is one of the criteria used by TWI when selecting Technology Fellows.

TWI expects Technology Fellows to demonstrate commitment to their own continued professional development – one of the ways I do this is through involvement in Professional Membership activities, e.g. Branch meetings, Technical Group meetings, technical webinars.

TWI also expects Technology Fellows to demonstrate commitment to, and track record in, the development and coaching of colleagues working in their area of expertise – one of the ways I do this is to encourage and support my mentees in applying for Professional Membership of The Welding Institute and Professional Registration (CEng).

Future (Membership and Career)

What are your engineering aspirations?

  • An important focus for me now is to pass on my knowledge and experience to others as I approach retirement, e.g. through on-the-job coaching/mentoring
  • Advise on strategy for inspection/qualification issues for new nuclear build
  • Persuade ASME to allow eddy current array testing in lieu of existing methods for surface examination, thereby reducing inspection time/cost for new nuclear build
  • Provide improved inputs on inspection reliability for TWI’s probabilistic assessments of structural integrity

Would you recommend Membership with The Welding Institute?

Yes, based on all the reasons highlighted before.

What advice would you give or what would you say to your younger self beginning your career in engineering?

  • Seek out opportunities to exchange ideas with engineers you haven’t met before or those outside your immediate team; new ideas often result from meeting new people
  • Similarly, seek out cross-disciplinary projects; most customers place value on a holistic approach (one-stop shop)

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