If you are a UNB student in any degree program and are interested in being a member of the 2016-2017 UNB Amateur Radio Club, please email me, Brent Petersenemail Brent.Petersen@unb.ca.  If I am not available, drop by the office of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, Head Hall, room HD36, near the Head Rest Cafeteria, and speak with Dawne, Denise, or Shelley, who may sell membership cards and loan keys to the club room; a loan of a key requires that you first be briefed on the safety procedures.  The 2016-2017 membership cost is $5 for UNB students and $20 for faculty and staff.  It is not necessary to have an amateur radio licence to become a member of the club.  One of the goals of the club is to help interested members to try to obtain an amateur radio license, which requires passing an examination.

These are some benefits of having a UNB Amateur Radio Club membership:

  • You will get assistance in working towards obtaining an amateur radio license.
  • You will get access to room H305 in that a key will be loaned to you.
  • There are three tables which may be shared among members.
  • You will have access to one shared computer, running Windows, using UNB's usual active directory system, which runs a variety of services and may also be used to log into UNB's web-based student electronic services.
  • Wireless@UNB is accessible from room H305.
  • You will get a membership card.

Unfortunately, there are limitations of a UNB Amateur Radio Club membership:

  • You will not have free printing.
  • There are no available Ethernet ports in room H305.

Regarding amateur radio licenses, Industry Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada is the authority, however, in plain language, I have tried to provide information associated with some frequently asked questions related to having an amateur radio license:

  • An amateur radio license is generally good for life and it is free for life.
  • A Canadian amateur radio license may be held by Canadian citizens, permanent residents, and international students.
  • For years, without any fees, the accredited examiners for amateur radio with the Fredericton Amateur Radio Club were generous with their time and completed all requests by UNB to offer examinations.  As of November 2014, for a three-year term, three faculty members at UNB became accredited examiners.  Amateur radio examinations at UNB would be offered free of charge based on requests by interested candidates.  If you want to write an amateur radio exam at UNB, please email Brent Petersen, email Brent.Petersen@unb.ca.  Also, the Fredericton Amateur Radio Club often offers amateur radio courses and examinations.  If you want to write the examination directly from Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada, you would have to travel to Saint John and possibly pay an examination fee. 
  • There is no prescribed limit regarding the number of times you may attempt the examination and the time between the attempts.  However, practical issues arise, such as booking rooms and finding mutually acceptable examination times.
  • Morse code is no longer a requirement to obtain an amateur radio license.
  • Innovation Science and Economic Development Canada makes available marine operator and radio operator certificates, which may have been obtained from being in cadets, but the amateur radio license is a more technically based license.
  • In emergency situations, amateur radio operators often provide communications when common communication systems fail, such as during and shortly after natural disasters when communication is critical.  This was the case with Hurricane Katrina in 2005.  Also, I spoke with amateur radio operators in Christchurch, New Zealand, and their VHF radio system worked, even though many places were without electricity and common communication methods were unavailable or too overloaded to use for three days following their tragic earthquake on February 22, 2011.
  • Regarding seeking employment in a company which specializes in electromagnetics, transmission lines, antennas, or even other systems, having an amateur radio license may be an asset.
  • A burden associated with having a license is that your home address might be public knowledge until you notify Innovation Science and Economic Development Canada.  With Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada's new online examination process, accredited examiners enter the new amateur radio operator's information directly in the database of radio amateurs at Industry Canada; when the new amateur radio operator claims an available call sign, the new amateur radio operator may select that the address is private.
  • You do not have to be of a certain age to obtain an amateur radio license.
  • For most people, amateur radio is just a hobby.

Comments, corrections and suggestions about this page are welcome.

 

This page was created on October 12, 2012 by Brent Petersen.
This page was updated on August 11, 2016 by Brent Petersen.
© Copyright 2012-2016, Brent Petersen.