Counting Down to Sections Congress 2008

The Congress will be held this September

8 July 2008

The countdown has begun to Sections Congress 2008: Celebrating Volunteer Achievements Worldwide, coming in September.

To help them become more effective, more than 300 IEEE section leaders from all 10 regions are expected in Quebec City, Quebec, Canada, to attend four days of workshops, panel discussions, and tutorials. In addition to a core track for all attendees—which covers the fundamentals of IEEE, its policies, and procedures, as well as an overview of its products and electronic services—delegates can attend six sessions from three other tracks. These cover membership, section management, and section/chapter activities. This year the congress, scheduled to take place 19 to 22 September, has made several changes, including adding a panel hosted by IEEE presidents and adopting a new way for delegates to develop recommendations to improve the organization’s services for members. Here are some of the changes:

• The “Inspire, Enable, Empower, and Engage” panel session on 21 September will feature IEEE past presidents discussing why they joined IEEE and what it has done for their career.

• Practical recommendations to improve the operation of IEEE and its member services will be presented and finalized at the start of the congress, instead of at its end. This has been the most important activity of the meeting, according to IEEE Fellow Mo El-Hawary, the program committee co-chair. In previous years, these recommendations were developed during the event. To speed up the process, this year each region will develop and finalize their recommendations before the congress begins. During the closing ceremony, the delegates will vote to assign a priority level to each of the recommendations, as they have at previous congresses.

• The operations committee of Member and Geographic Activities (MGA) is hosting a training session on 20 September on the role that section leaders play in serving IEEE members through their section’s recruitment, development, and retention programs. Topics to be discussed include how MGA’s new structure differs from that of Regional Activities, its predecessor organization, and how the sections’ financial management, strategic and operational planning, and leadership development will be affected. The discussion will be led by Joe Lillie, MGA vice president, and will include talks by a team of MGA volunteer leaders.

For more information about Sections Congress 2008, visit the Sections Congress website.

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