Saturday/Sunday, March 1-2, 2008

IEEE Region 2 Meeting
Harrisburg, PA

IEEE is divided into 10 geographical regions; the Delaware Bay Section is in region 2, along with Maryland, Pennsylvania, Southern New Jersey, Northern Virginia, West Virginia and Ohio. There are about 20 sections in Region 2. 

There are about 50 attendees at these meetings, which occur once or twice per year. This is where sections compare notes to see what has worked during the past year, and what needs fixing. Sections having issues can call on the experience of other sections and IEEE headquarters to solve problems. Although IEEE has the largest part of the membership participating only on national level committees, the local section activities are important to keep IEEE well-grounded with the overall membership. 

To give a flavor of this Region 2 meeting, the following is a list of action items, along with an explanation of the source of the issue.
1. Supply Tipton, the Continuing Education Chair for the Region, with the Continuing Education chair in each section. IEEE is ramping up attention to continuing education resources, and the sections need to be looking at these.
2. Each section supply Kolosky, Chair of Industrial Relations, at least one contact at the “working level” (Engineer up to manager) in the section. This is toward reminding industry, and calling their attention to, the advantages their company can get from IEEE.
3. Each section should be sponsoring the senior projects at their universities. (Our Delaware Bay section did this for several years).
4. Respond as to what an IEEE call center should be prepared for. The idea of a call center is to provide an easier access of IEEE resources to members. 
5. There is an opportunity for interested parties to present a poster on “Green Technology” at the next IEEE-USA meeting. Who are the candidates from each section? 
6. Each section should have at least one member nominated for one of the many awards available; award probably presented at the Section Congress 2008 meeting. 
7. IEEE runs the so-called “terminator” program in about April of each year. Members in arrears in dues are removed from the membership list. Each section should look at the members in their section to see if this is in error, or at least try to find the reason for dropping membership. 

Other areas discussed: Maryland is planning to extend the 6% sales tax to “computer services” largely interpreted as any computer service supplied to the public. This has many people in Maryland upset.

Of interest to electromagnetism enthusiasts: The home of James Maxwell (and where he wrote all those beloved Maxwell’s equations) in Scotland (Glenlair) is being restored as part of the IEEE Foundation history initiative. 

This year's Student Activities Conference is being held at Pennsylvania College of Technology in Williamsport, PA on April 4-6. This conference is designed to allow students of all Region 2 universities to network, and participate in the following competitive events. Note that prior preparation is NOT required for most of the events:
1. Brown Bag Hardware Design – all students are given a bag full of parts and 4 hours to design and fabricate something that meets an objective.
2. Micromouse – this is a robotic event. The robot is previously prepared by the entrants; a kit can be purchased to prepare this robot.
3. Deliver a paper
4. Project Showcase – A display of student projects. Grade is by popular vote from the students.
5. Ethics problem- students are given an ethics problem; graded on solution.
And, there is a job fair. See more info on sponsors and the event at: http://www.pct.edu/student_orgs/ieee/sac2008/index.asp
Looks like a four hour drive from U D into northern Pennsylvania. 

One of the most important section events is the Sections Congress, which meets every three years. The next one is this year in Quebec City, Canada. It is scheduled to meet starting on September 17 (which is the Fall Region 2 meeting) and continuing with the all regions meeting September 18-22. This event provides training for section officers, networking between the sections, direct discussions with IEEE HQ personnel, and the final event is to serve IEEE HQ with a list of 10 “must do” issues to be solved during the coming year.