ISCTE-IUL IEEE Student Branch had the pleasure to participate in the IEEE Region 8 Student and Young Professionals Congress 2014, which took place in Krakow from the 6th to the 10th of August. The event was hosted by AGH University of Science and Technology, and had the purpose of helping students and young professionals gain insight, as well as enabling the exchange of knowledge and skills. The event was composed of plenary sessions, workshops, and social sessions. Our student branch was represented by Vasco Costa and Miguel Duarte.
During the event, we had the chance of meeting many of the 400 IEEE members from 350 universities in many different Region 8 countries, although it counted with a large Portuguese participation (the second biggest presence of a country section). It was an excellent opportunity to learn how other IEEE Student Branches are contributing to the development and sharing of knowledge, both on technical- and soft-skills, and to share experiences on how these activities are being held.
One of the components of the event was a poster session, which counted on posters from more than 100 different Student Branches present in the event. In this session, we were able to show our activities to other IEEE members, and get ideas on how to improve them. It was a pleasant surprise to notice that the majority of the Student Branches focus their activities on state-of-the art technologies, such as 3D printing, and on open hardware/software technology, such as Arduino and Linux.
The event was composed of a set of sessions regarding diverse projects active within the IEEE like like TISP, EPICS-in-IEEE, IEEEmadC, IEEExtreme, Computer Society, Power and Energy Society and Cyprus Entrepreneurship Net-Work, not forgetting the project that gives name to this event: the Young Professional position in Future World. There were also workshops on management and activities developed by some Student Branches, where some of them used their own experience as an example case to explain how to organize an IEEE activity, to present papers for the Student Paper Contest (SPC), and how to make a Student Branch achieve exemplarity and win awards with its activities. There were also some workshops focused on the individual, with topics that identified what kind of soft skills help an engineer’s career or how they should present their ideas. They were also visits to the various labs of the University, like the MRI Laboratory, the anechoic chamber or the signal design in ultra-scaled CMOS technologies, with presentations of some of the technologies used and developed there.
The social sessions included an opening session at the Wawel Castle, a visit to the incredible Krakow salt mines (where the gala dinner took place), a visit to the Auschwitz concentration camp, a multi-cultural dinner where each nation was able to bring their traditional foods and drinks, and a technical visit to partner companies of the event, where we can distinguish companies like Nokia and Intel, among many others.
In summary, the event was an amazing and unique opportunity to learn, as well as to meet other IEEE members and share experiences. We hope that our Student Branch is able participate once again in the next Student and Young Professionals Congress so that we can show how much we learned and the great things that we are currently (and will continue) doing!