The latest in our ongoing series of updates about activities at the Institution.
The IMechE connects intelligent and knowledgeable people from a spectrum of engineering disciplines and industries under the strapline “Improving the world through engineering”. Together these engineers do what cannot be done alone or within commercial enterprises. A recent example is the new artificial intelligence competition class in Formula Student which will upskill new professionals, meeting the skills demand in this area and accelerate its development. This is what it means to be part of the IMechE.
Just 4% of IMechE membership are active volunteers. With the good work that is delivered now through the Institution on this percentage, I wonder at the power and positive influence we could have with much more of the Membership engaging. We can start by being more open about how Members can volunteer and how the Institution values each and every Member’s input.
You turning up is what the IMechE lives on. Easier said than done, I know. Volunteering helps:
- You – by expanding your horizons and connections, with opportunities that might not come by in your day job. Volunteering offers a way for us to be self-actualised through the support of the Institution. There’ll be a group of people in the IMechE you can connect with and work on your common goals, such as climate change or transport. Meeting new people and learning new things incremases our neurological health as we live longer.
- Others – by being present in the IMechE community, we benefit from your different experience and perspective. Less experienced Members at the networking events (which are often free) take away connections, anecdotes and confidence. A little engagement leads to increased opportunities. Don’t underestimate the positive impact you can offer others.
- Your community – this can mean your Institution, your local area, family or industry. Your time volunteering in schools, for events, as registration interviewers increases the quality of services that the IMechE offers and the overall benefit to society in offering engineering solutions and increasing engineering understanding and skills.
There are lots of ways you can help the IMechE’s objectives; they are not necessarily time intensive. Sometimes it’s as simple as doing a flyer design. The real benefit is in you being there as part of our IMechE community.
Start small – email your local special interest group office, regional group or Young Members' network, and just ask if you can come along to the next meeting or call. People are delighted to welcome more people! Or comment below with your interest and we can reply with where it can thrive. The Institution’s Members can support you in conversations with your companies about managing volunteering and work.
I hope that by having a more active and engaged membership base, focusing on lots of people engaging in small ways, that we’ll have an Institution that is more open, open to new ideas, open to challenge and open to meeting the demands of today’s world.
Salma Suleyman CEng
Trustee – Ordinary Member Under 30 (2017-2020)