Masters of code: Greg Armstrong achieves the gold standard of code certification
It’s considered the Ph.D. of building safety codes certification. The Master Code Professional (MCP) is the highest level of designation the International Code Council offers and is the “gold standard” for demonstrating proficiency in the code profession. The Code Council has certified thousands of individuals, but only a small select number have attained this high level of achievement: just over 800 MCP professionals worldwide. Their achievements are a benefit to the code enforcement profession as well as their communities.
To obtain this level of certification requires and demonstrates a commitment to the profession, diverse knowledge of codes and a high level of self-initiative. Greg Armstrong is the latest to join the elite group of Master Code Professionals. In this exclusive feature for the Building Safety Journal, we asked Greg to share his experience on obtaining the MCP designation, highlights of his professional career and any insights or advice he has concerning the industry.
City of Coweta
Coweta, Oklahoma, United States
International Code Council member for 12 years
BSJ: What led you to pursue and obtain MCP certification?
Armstrong: After I passed my CBO I set that as a goal for myself.
BSJ: How did you study and prepare for the many exams you took as a part of your MCP designation?
Armstrong: I studied in my spare time and at night. A lot of my tests early on were proctored paper and pencil tests on Saturdays in Norman, Oklahoma.
BSJ: What does achieving the prestigious MCP status mean to you?
Armstrong: It shows that I have put forth the effort to reach that goal and I have gained a great deal of knowledge doing so.
BSJ: How would you describe the value or benefits that have come with the recognition of your MCP status?
Armstrong: It usually brings an element of respect and admiration and that makes you feel good about your accomplishment.
BSJ: What advice would you offer to those who are considering pursuing an MCP designation?
Armstrong: Keep pursuing that goal and don’t give up because it is a great achievement.
BSJ: How long have you been in the industry?
Armstrong: 23 years.
BSJ: What major changes have you seen?
Armstrong: A lot of changes in the codes as well as methods and materials over the years.
BSJ: What excites you about the future of your industry?
Armstrong: The available changes in technology and products for the better-built environment.
BSJ: What is one piece of advice that you would give to those starting out in the industry?
Armstrong: Set goals for yourself in taking examinations and ask questions of people with experience.
BSJ: Building safety is the focal point of our mission here at the Code Council. What is the importance of building safety to you? How has ICC helped you in your career and commitment to public safety?
Armstrong: Life Safety has always been at the top of the list. ICC has always had information available in one form or another whether it is in a codebook, study guide or on the website, there is always info or links to it.
BSJ: Obtaining all those ICC certifications is quite an accomplishment. What are you going to do now that you have achieved this goal?
Armstrong: Keep learning and stay current in the industry.
BSJ: Thank you, Greg, and congratulations. You have definitely been an encouragement to us all in your pursuit of excellence.
To earn the Code Council’s elite MCP designation, a candidate must first pass 10 core Code Council exams plus a number of elective Code Council exams. Typical Master Code Professionals hold 17 or more Code Council certifications. The Master Code Professional designation requires certified individuals to complete an additional 60 hours of Continuing Education Units every three years to maintain active status.
“The Master Code Professional certification is the pinnacle of all Code Council certifications, representing a level of effort, knowledge, and dedication that elevates not only the individual achieving it but the code official profession as a whole,” said Code Council Chief Executive Officer Dominic Sims, CBO.
Master Code Professionals are typically responsible for all technical and management aspects of code enforcement with duties that range from the management of a code enforcement department to the supervision of inspectors and plan reviewers.
“Congratulations to Greg on achieving this important and significant accomplishment,” said Autumn Saylor, director of the Code Council’s Assessment Center. “I challenge and encourage all code professionals to strive for this level of achievement, and look forward to congratulating more Master Code Professionals in the future.”
To learn more on how you can join this elite group and let us help you open the door to increased professional challenges and career advancement, click here.