Writing the SE Exam - International

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Feb 14, 2019
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Has anyone had experience with writing a pencil and paper exam during COVID when you are not from the STATES (I live in Canada).

Im planning to write for State of Washington and previously (prior to COVID) I just drove down for 2 hours wrote the exam and went home. But obviously I can't do that as the borders are closed.

Does this just mean I can't write it indefinitely till the restrictions are over?

Thank You.


Dec 29, 2017
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Hi Manimani,

Sorry to hear about your bad experience, but unfortunately, NCEES did cancel some of
the April 2020 exam site. My last "successful" enter to USA was March 2020, to re-take
my CBT (Computer-Based Test) of both Seismic and Survey. I am from Taiwan (entered
the country with ESTA valid VISA) though I did work in New York and Los Angeles (CH2M-
Hills & Caltrans) for couple of years, so the NCEES still allowed me to take 8-Hrs on and
off as long as I saved-up enough money for flight ticket and expensive registration fee.

However, the "Travel Ban" was essential and critical. Last March 2020, I didn't fly to
LAX (where the COVID-19 situation hasn't become too terrible). I entered Ontario
International Airport w/o any trouble. My CBT Seismic Exam was on March 06 2020
in Anaheim. But the terrible thing was when I was packing/unpacking books and
luggage from one hotel (near very clean and beautiful Ontario Intl' Airport) down
to Anaheim (Orange County), Trump's Travel Ban suddenly went up from "Leve-1" to
"Level-3", so all of a sudden within that week, almost ALL the highways ramps on
Rte-57/60, Rte-210/10 all got CHP after 5PM to put travelers (with rental car) to
re-examine your DMV Driver's License and ID. (I still keep my SSN# so didn't get
into much trouble).

But the night after my March 06 Seismic Exam, I left Anaheim by 8pm after dinner,
but it ended up taking me almost 4.5 hrs to drive from Anaheim back to Ontario:
CHP almost closed ALL the on-ramp of all the major highways!! (Trust me, it's really
not owing to the construction). I arrived my hotel close to 1AM, and the next day,
they urge me heading to Ontario International Airport ASAP as some freights will
be cancelled after the "Level-3 Travel Ban". Now both Eva Air & China Airline can
only get into LAX.

Similar to your situation, I sincerely hope this COVID-19 can be phased out, so at
least I can re-take my paper-and-pencil exam and passed it!

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