Fast Facts

The collapse of the St. Francis Dam in California killed more than 500 people in 1928, and a school explosion in Texas killed approximately 300 people in 1937. Both incidents led to the licensing of professional engineers in these states for the protection of the public health, safety, and welfare. In 1907, Wyoming became the first state to license engineers, and in 1947, Montana became the 50th state. Before the enactment of those state licensing laws, virtually anyone could call themselves a professional engineer or offer engineering services to the public.


The term “landscape architect” was first coined in 1858 during the construction of Central Park in New York City. Landscape architects are responsible for designing, planning, and maintaining not just parks but roads, dams, storm management systems, public and private campuses and sites of historic or cultural significance.


An architect’s responsibility goes well beyond just designing aesthetically-pleasing buildings. Architects ensure building designs are up to local building code, structurally sound, and practical for who and how the building will be used. For instance, when planning a project, architects must consider emergency evacuation requirements to establish clear and accurate paths to exit.  Without architects, even the best-looking buildings may be unsafe or unusable.


From helping businesses fight cyberattacks and auditing state and local governments, to reviewing sustainability programs, CPAs play a vital role in upholding the integrity of the global financial system. For example, CPAs working for the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) sifted through layers of complex and illicit financial transactions to send mobster Al Capone to jail for tax evasion.


Almost everything related to land location and use typically requires the services of a professional surveyor. They do more than mark or identify property boundaries. They use state-of-the-art technology such as drones, 3-D scanners, LiDAR, and GPS to provide services such as topography, spatial positioning, forensic and hydrographic mapping, and land use planning.

The Public Overwhelmingly Supports Regulation Done Right

75% of voters believe that ensuring qualifications for certain professions is important.

71% of voters believe that licensing of certain occupations should be required unless it can be proven that eliminating licensing will not have a negative impact on public health and safety.

67% of voters believe that consumers are best protected by a system that regulates education, examination, and experience standards—all of which are overseen by a professional licensing board.

56% of the public believe it is "extremely important" that licensing boards ensure professionals in certain industries meet minimum qualifications to perform their work.

Source: Benenson Survey. 2019. Unpublished raw data.