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Will young professionals be one of your topmost priorities if elected 2018 IEEE President-Elect?

Young professionals are our future, the future of the humanity. They are essential in our scientific and professional community as well as in IEEE.

We should always strive to support them to the greatest extent, ensuring that they are fully engaged and integral part of our community and the entire IEEE.

They should have a pervasive presence in all IEEE groups (including Sections, Societies/Technical Councils, Chapters, and their Committees) to bring their views and aspirations in all decision processes since inception. They should have actual impact in IEEE.

We should embrace and be inspired by their passion. We should appreciate their fresh views and their enthusiasm for the life and the humanity.

We should provide knowledge and services tailored on their specific needs, in the respective geographical area, and in the specific technological area of work.

With our extraordinary people, I will focus on creating a personalized offer for every young professional. Listening to young professionals in each geographical area, analyzing the local needs, and identifying effective solutions all together, I will work with all Boards and organizational units catalyzing our efforts in following main areas:

  • Develop more practical knowledge to solve real-world problems and use standards, including methodologies, guidelines, best practices, and successful cases.
  • Expand technical activities, communities, and standards in emerging technologies, multi-disciplinary areas, and areas which are broadly using technologies in the IEEE field (e.g., environmental engineering, finance engineering, food engineering).
  • Introduce a recommendation system on a comprehensive platform to facilitate identification of knowledge, products, services, and volunteering opportunities according to the profiles of each individual, by taking into account her/his area of work, her/his recent searches, and the searches of people with similar interests.
  • Extract fundamental and advanced knowledge from the technical material already available, by knowledge discovery approaches and aggregating this material, for example, into overviews, tutorials, and webinars.

Some additional specific actions are:

  1. Knowledge:
    • Continue to enhance the information and knowledge delivery mechanisms with modern solutions and mobile services, so that information and knowledge are made available when and where needed.             
    • Expand awareness and support to ethics, ethic by design, technology sustainability, and risk management in technology, applications, and design innovation.
  2. Continuing education
    • Create more opportunities for continuing education to remain on the leading edge of technology and innovation, both on advanced foundations and emerging and multi-disciplinary technologies as well as emerging needs for technologies, applications and standards, in particular by means of webinars and online courses.
    • Introduce a recommendation system to create personalized continuing education programs, according to the specific background of individuals and their respective needs, goals and aspirations.
    • Develop specific educational activities by adopting modern delivery mechanisms and quickly on-demand focusing on specific problems.
    • Facilitate access to knowledge and continuing education by personalized plans and bundles.
    • Create a repository/directory of expertise and competence profile, with possible certifications.
  3. Networking
    • Expand networking opportunities, especially among young professionals, in all IEEE groups, especially in Societies, Technical Councils, Divisions, Sections, Chapters, and in multi-disciplinary and emerging areas, by establishing specialized forums on advanced topics as well as emerging technologies, applications, and standards, to facilitate dissemination of knowledge, recent experiences, and best practices.
    • Reinforce attention on young professionals in networking opportunities at conferences and other events, promoting interaction with more senior volunteers.
    • Enhance local people networking with local specialized groups, maker events, and competitions.
    • Enhance the humanitarian activities worldwide and the engineering projects in the local community to show the value of technology for improving the daily life of people and to give back to the society.
  4. Career development and planning
    • Expand the materials, tools, mentoring, and other services for early career development, career planning, capacity building, soft skills training, language, communication, group dynamics, social intelligence, adaptive thinking, cross-cultural competency, transdisciplinarity, cognitive load management, problem solving, public policy skills, management, and leadership.
    • Expand the mentoring programs to address not only career development and planning, but also discussion of technology advancement and emerging topics.
    • Stimulate internship opportunities in industry, research centers, and academia.
    • Create and promote a global directory for internship opportunities with local and worldwide perspectives.
    • Expand the support to job fairs and online market place, possibly in cooperation with other organizations.
    • Provide better understanding of entrepreneurship skills and foundations.
    • Contribute to support start-ups with knowledge, networking, services, and visibility.
    • Provide more information about volunteering activities, also as way to develop and practice leadership skills in the friendly IEEE environment, and enhance mentoring for early volunteering development.
    • Expand micro-volunteering across IEEE, also with directory of opportunities.
  5. Membership
    • Continue not to charge fees to young professionals for membership to the Young Professional Affinity Group.
    • Identify multi-tier membership models more suited for the needs of young professionals, with products and services tailored on their specific needs, equally affordable everywhere in the world, more proportional to the average income, rewarding volunteers and frequent users, possibly with monthly payments and more gradual increase from the student membership fee, and more caring for transitions between employment positions or in the case of unemployment.
    • Further expand the recognition of excellence of young professionals, especially in technology, product development, engineering practice, and industry management.

Actual specific activities should be identified together with young professionals and all people in each geographical area, since the most appropriate solutions depend on the specific needs and aspirations of the local professional community.

Even though the list of envisioned activities is long, it is worth noting that different IEEE groups are involved so that many activities can be addressed in parallel and synergies exploited in coordinated collaborative efforts across the entire IEEE. The actual initiatives should be anyway analyzed on the bases of the specific needs of each geographical area and the available financial and human resources.

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