Network focus: IET Chennai

5 November 2013
City of Chennai

IET Chennai: giving local IET members what they need.

The IET Chennai Network is a hugely active community that hosts a wide number of events every year, reports Keri Allan.

Since its inception back in 1950, the IET Chennai Local Network (LN) has gone from strength to strength. The group was created by the late Mr Govindarajan, whose work was carried on by fellow engineer DA Rajan, now known as the Network’s ‘mentor’. Today the Network currently has 300 professional members, 3,200 student members and 39 student chapters.

Growing student membership

Much of the Network’s growth has happened over the last eight years, beginning back in 2006 under the guidance of Dr SP Chowdhury, who was a member of the IET’s Membership and Development board. That year saw the creation of the first student chapter at a university called the Dr MGR Educational and Research Institute, signing up 35 student members.

It was at this time that L Ramesh came on board as the Network’s Young Professionals (YP) chair. Over the years he has worked hard to build up the number of student chapters and members.

“We engage with the students by hosting various activities that would interest them,” Ramesh explains. “The top activities that have made more students join have included the YP Annual Conference and focused beneficial events such as industrial visits, workshops and events such as the IET Mission 100 – an effective leadership seminar,” he highlights.

Giving local IET members what they need

Indeed the Network works hard to provide the best possible events for its members. They ask for job-focused as well as life-skills training, which the Network addresses through its events. Workshops, lectures, and technical visits take place throughout the year, which gives a huge amount back to the local engineering community (see box out on Chennai events). In addition, the student chapters also hold their own focused events thanks to financial support from the Network.

The Network’s biggest achievements

The Network has clearly achieved a lot over the years, but there are some things that really stand out to Ramesh.

“In 2008 the Chennai Network created a world record by recruiting 276 female engineers from the Vivekandanda College of Engineering for Women,” he notes proudly. “[We’re also proud that we have been able to] organise more than 300 events during the past five years and have opened close to 40 student chapters in the last six to seven years. [Finally I’m proud to say that] the IET Chennai Network won six out of eight Pride Awards in the IET South Asia CVC Conference this year,” he adds.

Future plans

Looking forward the Network has no plans to rest on its laurels and it has a structured vision already in place for what it aims to achieve in the next 12 months. There are specific goals to work towards in relation to member numbers, and the Network also aims to open further industrial and student chapters. Also, in addition to continuing to host successful past event formats, the Network is also working on putting together events focusing on the IET’s sectors. It looks like exciting times for the region’s engineers!

Chennai events

A very active Network, the Chennai LN hosts many IET-run events throughout the year. Here IET Chennai YP chair L Ramesh gives a taster of the kinds of things on offer to the local engineering community.

IET Sustainable Energy and Intelligent System International Conference
A popular Indian conference, this three-day event is conducted annually and participants number over 400. The presented papers are made available in the IET digital library.

IET (YP) Next Generation Efficient Power Distribution System Workshop
This is a two-day lecture with a practical session on power distribution techniques by academic and industrial experts. This is conducted annually at one of the student chapters.

IET (YP) Mission 100
An effective leadership seminar for those working in academic institutions. On average we have around 100 participants and it’s a great networking opportunity for attendees.

CV Raman Lecture
This is a research paper publication workshop for scholars.

IET (YP) IET 3600
This event is a techno-cultural festival, which also hosts the IET Student Member Annual Congress. We have on average 300 participants and it’s a great networking opportunity for students.

IET Orange
This is a life-skills workshop for local engineers.

IET Young Mind Challenge
This is a research funding presentation.

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