Prepared by: Lim Qi Yang, Chair for IEEE Universiti Putra Malaysia Student Branch
IEEE Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) Student Branch was established in 2001 under the Malaysia Section. As of February 2021, the Student Branch has 14 Graduate Student Members and 28 Student Members, which totals up to 42 student members. The retention rate over the years has averaged 30% with an influx of new IEEE student members signing up annually and participation of not only from the program of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, but also from students of Chemical Engineering and Computer and Communication Systems Engineering.
One key area of focus of the SB has been to inspire leadership and build teamwork skills among student members. As students are a vital component of the branch’s future, substantial efforts have been made to provide leadership training, encourage critical thinking and problem solving, build a sense of community, and instill values of giving back in the form of organizing useful and engaging activities to benefit all students of Universiti Putra Malaysia. These efforts have resulted in effective and active SB committees with activities such as the Summer Break e-Mobility which serves as a virtual platform for exchanging students to experience Malaysian culture, at the same time an industrial exposure to local students excited to learn about their future careers.
A second focus area has been membership value. The committee has been working hard to provide local value especially towards students by organizing various technical workshops and seminars to prepare them for a professional career. Technical activities include Custom IC Design workshop, introductory webinars of Java, MATLAB and Verilog HDL. Resume writing and internship sharing sessions were also held to assist students envision their future. Despite the pandemic and movement restriction order placed upon Malaysia since March 2020 for nearly two years, the committee had been fast adapting to an abruptly changing environment and still managed to conduct various activities without compromising the quality.
A third area of focus has been on improving communications. The SB has been engaging with social media platforms such as YouTube, Facebook and Linkedin as an official outlet of information whilst maintaining WhatsApp groups among the committees to facilitate teamwork and planning activities.
The UPM Student Branch has won several awards and accolades. Some of its recent achievements include:
2016 IEEE 2nd Outstanding Student Volunteer Award – Gorakanage Ashen Indimal Gomes