Janurary 2017 Edition
Message from the Young Professionals Chair

This message contains the most important activities, achievements, and milestones of the IEEE Young Professionals Committee in 2017. During this year, I had the great pleasure of leading a team of incredible and exceptionally motivated volunteers, who believe in IEEE and want to make this organization a better place for young engineers. This year was very special for our group – we started developing and implementing new projects that are meant to increase membership for Young Professionals and IEEE members overall. No one can go back in time (yet) to change what has happened, so let us work together on our present to make ourselves a wonderful future. I wish you pleasant reading and all the best in 2018.

Sincerely yours,
Rafal Sliz
IEEE Young Professionals Chair

IEEE Young Professionals Business Plan

We started the year strong, with development and implementation of the Young Professionals Business Plan, which aims to provide enhanced benefits and a new remarkable product experience for all young IEEE members. The plan consists of five different projects that address various concerns faced mainly by young members in the organization:

    1. µVolunteering - Introduce a platform that allows IEEE Young Professional members to create and find flexible micro-volunteering opportunities throughout the world.
    2. Loyalty Program - Improve members’ and volunteers’ experience, and the feeling of belonging to the organization, as well as increase members’ engagement, recognize local volunteer efforts, and track their achievements.
    3. IEEEXplore Access - Leverage an existing IEEE service to provide IEEE Young Professional members with the technical content they desire as a membership benefit.
    4. Signature Events - Support presence at high-profile tech events to expand the global IEEE Young Professionals community, attract industry practitioners and increase inter-unit engagement.
    5. Seed Funding - Providing support for local events to increase local volunteers’ engagement and satisfaction, and consequently gain enough momentum to create fully sustainable YP Affinity Groups.

For more details related to the YP Business Plan and the implementation progress reports, visit our YP Business Plan website.

Funding Portal

In February 2017, IEEE Young Professionals opened the Funding Opportunities Portal, where Young Professional volunteers can seek financial support for their activities. Consolidation of all funding opportunities into one system allowed us to support various activities worldwide in a fair and timely manner. If you need support for your activities in 2018, do not hesitate to visit our Funding Opportunities Portal.

Young Professionals at the IEEE Board Retreat in Hawaii

2017 IEEE President Karen Bartleson invited several active IEEE Young Professional volunteers to participate in strategy development sessions during the IEEE Board of Directors Retreat in January 2017. This group brought a whole new perspective on various aspects that have been discussed. Young peoples bright ideas mixed with the experienced approach of Senior members resulted in a number of recommendations that IEEE started to implement throughout the year. For more details, visit our IMPACT Blog.

Young Professionals and Digi-Key partnership

In March 2017, IEEE Young Professionals started a partnership with Digi-Key, a leading electronic component distributor. We are very happy that an international, well recognized brand has decided to work together with our committee in order to provide better products and services, and increase the visibility of the brand among young engineers. For more details about our partner, visit Digi-Key website.

YP Liaison appointed to the IEEE Board

In the middle of the year, IEEE President Karen Bartleson appointed me as the Young Professionals Liaison to the IEEE Board of Directors. Since June 2017, I have had the pleasure to participate in the Board of Directors meetings, representing all IEEE Young Professional members and volunteers from around the world. 2018 IEEE President Jim Jefferies reappointed me for this position in 2018. These steps have allowed Young Professionals to influence the decision-making process so as to reflect more the needs of younger generations in the organization.

New IEEE Young Professionals logo

After long preparations, in July we announced the new IEEE Young Professionals logo.We are fully aware that the rebranding process will take a significant amount of time, but we have been receiving positive opinions regularly, proving that the new logo is well received. This is also a great opportunity to announce the launch of new Young Professionals Promotional kits in the beginning of 2018, containing several exciting giveaways. Full image-set is available to download from our website from Templates and Graphics Section.

Young Professionals at the 2017 IEEE Section Congress in Sydney, Australia

2017 has also been remarkable for Young Professionals in terms of their presence at the Section Congress held in Sydney, Australia, in August 2017. During the Congress, the YP team arranged a booth at which Congress participants could have some fun and learn more about Young Professionals. In addition, seven separate presentations were fully tailored for Young Professionals topics of interest. Finally, the YP Team, with great help from local YPs, organized a boat tour where Regional Young Professionals Coordinators, Student Representatives and Women in Engineering Coordinators had the unique opportunity of networking with high-profile IEEE volunteers, such as the IEEE President, Past President, and President-Elect, in addition to Vice-Presidents representing several major IEEE Boards. A short video from Sydney is available on our YouTube Channel.

New Team Member

In October, our YP team grew by one member – Kristen Mahan, a staff member involved in the Young Professionals Program. Since then, Kristen has been supporting our growing portfolio of activities, as well as increasing the visibility of the program within and outside of IEEE. I am looking forward to working more with Kristen in 2018. Kristen's intro video is also available on our YouTube Channel.

New Young Professionals Affinity Groups

Throughout 2017, 20 requests to form Young Professionals Affinity Groups were submitted and approved:

  • Region 1: New York
  • Region 3: Charlotte, Piedmont, Richmond
  • Region 5: High Plains
  • Region 6: Coastal Los Angeles, Fort Huachuca, Hawaii, Oakland-East Bay, Palouse, Spokane
  • Region 7: Victoria
  • Region 8: Algeria, Romania, Serbia and Montenegro
  • Region 9: Aguascalientes, Mexico, Queretaro
  • Region 10: Gujarat, Northern Australia

I would like to wish all new Affinity Groups good luck and all the best with your activities - I am certain you will rock.

Supporting materials for YP Coordinators and Representatives

During the YP Face-to-Face meeting in Costa Rica, the YP Committee made the decision to create guidelines for YP Regional Coordinators and YP Society Representatives. The development and compilation of these documents was time consuming and involved valuable input from several IEEE units. Both compilations are must-read documents for all coordinators and representatives that want to do a good job without reinventing the wheel. The manuals are available to download from our website Manuals Section.

Young Professionals Awards and Recognition

Every good volunteering organization should have a means of recognizing dedicated volunteers. IEEE and Young Professionals are no different. Currently, Young Professionals have two awards:

  • Young Professionals Hall of Fame Award, designated for outstanding Young Professionals Affinity Groups. In 2017, the following Young Professionals Affinity Groups have been awarded:
    • Bangalore (Region 10)
    • Costa Rica (Region 9)
    • Jordan (Region 8)
  • MGA Young Professionals Achievement Award for outstanding Young Professionals. In 2017, the following individuals have been recognized:
    • Anis Ben Arfi (Region 7)
    • Flavia Dinca (Region 8)
    • Ramesh Nair (Region 6)
    • Simay Akar (Region 10)
    • Sohaib Oamar Sheikh (Region 8)
    • Thiago Ribeiro De Alencar (Region 9)

I would like to congratulate all recipients mentioned Affinity Groups and individuals have been deeply involved in IEEE Young Professionals, and these recognitions are well deserved.
Also, I am very excited to announce that, in November, the IEEE Board of Directors has approved the IEEE Theodore W. Hissey Outstanding Young Professional Award, the newest IEEE-level recognition, named in honor of IEEE Life Fellow Theodore W. Hissey for his long-standing support for the IEEE Young Professional community. The nomination form will be available at the beginning of 2018 and the first recipient will be honored at the 2019 IEEE Honors Ceremony.

IEEE The Institute issue on Young Professionals

Most of the December issue of The Institute magazine is focused on IEEE Young Professionals, their achievements, plans for the future, and influence on the organization. This issue features articles which will allow you to learn more about us, as well as photos of the team members. For the published articles, visit The Institute website.

Adventures for 2018

Taking into consideration our plans and schedule, 2018 will be big for IEEE Young Professionals. Firstly, we will concentrate on real-life implementation and improvements of the YP Business Plan projects that have been initialized in 2017. As mentioned previously, these projects are meant to increase satisfaction with IEEE membership, but only in 2018 the YP members will be able to use them or participate in advance piloting. Secondly, our efforts will be focused on increasing support for our YP volunteers in order to improve their volunteering experience. We will aim to make the IEEE YP volunteering fun, beneficial, enriching, and less troublesome. Genuine success comes only to those who are ready for it. We will never step back and always have courage to accept new challenges.

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