Institution news

The formation of the Institution's Pan-Caribbean Group

Dr Anthony Green, Americas Regional Chairman

The pan-Caribbean Group- the Institution's newest Group- launches this month, following formal recognition from the IMechE International Strategy Board.

Amazingly rapid developments have transpired within the Americas Region during the past twelve months. Most notable of these was the recent formation and ISB approval on September 30, 2014 of the Pan-Caribbean Group. The Group currently comprises twelve countries located in, around or within close proximity to the Caribbean Sea. To date, member countries include Trinidad and Tobago, Guyana, French Guiana, Suriname, Barbados, Venezuela, Colombia, Bermuda, Bahamas, British Virgin Islands, Jamaica and Montserrat, with a current total membership of 336 and the potential to increase membership to about 685 within the next two years. It is anticipated engineering communities in other countries within Central America will become aware of the Group and opt to join.

The concept of the new Group formation arose at the time of the University of the West Indies (UWI), St Augustine Campus student chapter inauguration on February 20, 2014, at which time, the proposed Group interim core committee was appointed with Dr. Chris Maharaj, Chair, Niebert Blair, Vice Chair, Deepak Lall, Hon Secretary, and John Thompson, Treasurer. In addition, contacts for each member country are represented on the committee. Further strengthening the case for the Group’s formation was the holding of a successful and well-attended (200 engineering professionals and students) networking and technical presentation session at the UWI on September 18, 2014 and the inauguration of a new student chapter at the University of Guyana on September 19, 2014. Furthermore, proceedings are underway to obtain IMechE accreditation for University of Guyana degrees in Mechanical Engineering.

These new developments have been embraced with great enthusiasm and energy by the student population and industry practitioners throughout the Caribbean with several other professional engineering organizations approaching the Group to form alliances. Primary benefits of forming the Group include consolidation of the membership and establishing a strong IMechE presence throughout the Caribbean, enabling concurrent participation by members in common events and initiatives across all member country venues through videoconferencing technologies and providing the opportunity for each member country to develop their own events for Pan-Caribbean participation.

In particular, a strong interest in membership of IMechE has come from the large population of Engineering Technicians and Technologists who are employed within the oil and gas, chemical processing and supporting industry sectors which represent a major segment of the industrial infrastructure and economic viability of the Caribbean. Of great appeal to these practitioners are the international professional standards, recognition and reputation IMechE membership provides.    

You can read more about the Inauguration of the University of Guyana Student Chapter in this month’s World Bulletin. This issue also features an article on the Networking event held at the University of the West Indies, also held this September. 

To find out more about the Pan Caribeean Group please visit their NearYou site


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