The great liability of the engineer compared to men of other professions is that his works are out in the open where all can see them. His acts, step by step, are in hard substance. He cannot, like the architect, cover his failures with trees and vines. He cannot like the politician screen his shortcomings by blaming his opponents and hope the people will forget. The engineer simply cannot deny he did it. If his works do not work he is damned.
On the other hand, unlike the doctor, his is not a life among the weak. Unlike the soldier, destruction is not his purpose. Unlike the lawyer, quarrels are not his daily bread. To the engineer falls the job of clothing the bare bones of science with life, comfort and hope. No doubt as years go by the people forget which engineer did it, even if they ever knew. Or some politician put his name on it. Or they credit it to some promoter who used other people’s money…
But the engineer himself looks back at the unending stream of goodness which flows from his success with satisfaction that few professions may know. And the verdict of his fellow professionals is all the accolade he wants."