The recent IEEE Region 8 Student Branch Congress (SBC) and GOLD Congress 2012 was held in Madrid, Spain. The SBC is an international event organized by IEEE Region 8, where more than 400 young engineering students and young professionals from more than 350 universities of Europe, Middle East, Russia, and Africa met together to discuss present and future engineering challenges, network and learn more about the IEEE.
The IEEE South Africa Section student and GOLD delegation comprised a record number of attendees at the congress:
1. Brett Terespolsky: Chair of University of the Witwatersrand IEEE SB
2. Lebogang Madise: Chair of University of Pretoria IEEE SB
3. Valerie Chiriseri: Chair of University of Cape Town IEEE SB
4. Lesley Arakkal: Chair of University of Pretoria IEEE Industrial Application Society Student Chapter / Chair of University of Pretoria IEEE Women In Engineering Student Affinity Group
5. Magnaem Simon: Chair of University of Cape Town IEEE Industrial Application Society Student Chapter / Chair of University of Cape Town IEEE Women In Engineering Student Affinity Group
6. Mohamed Mukuddem: Treasurer at University of Cape Town IEEE SB
7. Joyce Mwangama: Chair of IEEE GOLD Affinity Group (Cape Town)
8. Vinu Nair: Vice Chair of IEEE GOLD Affinity Group (Pretoria)
The purpose of this event was to offer engineering students; undergraduate and graduate student members, as well as young professionals the platform to gain further insight on leadership skills, IEEE membership development / member engagement, IEEE social innovation activities, entrepreneurship, enabling exchange of knowledge and skills. The venue for the congress was the Telecommunications Engineering School (ETSIT) of the Technical University of Madrid. Attendees were further able to participate in technical field trips to various important research and technology development centres.
A highlight of the event was the multicultural evening, for which the delegates had to set up exhibit stalls showcasing their culture. The most popular items were cultural attire, food and unique beverages from the many different countries in Region 8. The South African stall showcased traditional foods such as Biltong, Pap and Boerewors. The University of Pretoria SB received third prize in the IEEE R8 SAC Student Branch Web Site competition for 2012, and the award was presented to Lebogang Madise at SBC’12.
Also representing the IEEE South Africa Section at the congress was Candidate for IEEE Region 8 Director-Elect 2013-2014 Saurabh Sinha. He participated in a lively debate with fellow candidate Costas Stasopoulos from Cyprus.
As is a usual result of the event, the South African delegation was greatly inspired. The team has a number of new ideas on projects, member activities and events that will aim to increase IEEE member development and engagement for the IEEE South Africa Section, both at student, graduate student and professional levels.
Contact: Joyce Mwangama, Chair: Student Activities Committee, IEEE South Africa Section (