IEEE Day 2019 Was a Global Success. What Will You Do for 2020?

More than 850 groups organized humanitarian projects and social gatherings

3 min read
Photograph of members of the Ajman University Student Branch - UAE in front of a sign that says follow your dreams.
Photo: IEEE Ajman University Student Branch - UAE

Photograph of members of the Ajman University Student Branch - UAE in front of a sign that says follow your dreams.Members of the IEEE student branch at Ajman University, in the United Arab Emirates, won first place in the IEEE Day photography contest’s Humanitarian category.Photo: IEEE Ajman University Student Branch - UAE

THE INSTITUTE IEEE groups around the world planned more than 850 events this year to mark IEEE Day’s 10th anniversary. Although the official day was 1 October, celebrations took place throughout the first two weeks of October, in part because some sections preferred to hold events on a weekend.

IEEE Day commemorates the 1884 meeting in Philadelphia where members of the American Institute of Electrical Engineers, one of IEEE’s predecessor societies, gathered for the first time to share technical ideas.

Here’s a roundup of the events.


Students from the University of Brasília, in Brazil, held a hair-cutting event and donated their shorn locks to cancer patients at a hospital. of the IEEE Women in Engineering group at the Fluminense Federal University in Niterói, Rio de Janeiro, was one many organizations that marked the 10th anniversary of IEEE Day.Photo: IEEE WIE UFF

Members of the IEEE North South University student branch, in Dhaka, Bangladesh, along with school’s IEEE Industry Applications Society chapter, spent a day providing hot meals to the city’s underprivileged children. The student branch also held a daylong Playing With Pixels workshop, which attracted 25 students.


Sharing meals was a common activity. The IEEE Florida Polytechnic University student branch, in Lakeland, held a picnic for current and prospective members. Student members at the Universidad Austral de Chile, in Valdivia, held a barbecue. The IEEE American University of Beirut student branch handed out cookies to students on campus.

The IEEE Young Professionals of South Australia threw a networking dinner in Adelaide for members and nonmembers alike.


Groups throughout Malaysia sponsored events and conferences. In Kuala Lumpur, the IEEE Women in Photonics group held an Introduce a Girl to Photonics session, explaining how the technology impacts the world. The IEEE International Microwave, Electron Devices, and Solid-State Circuit Symposium, held on 8 and 9 October in Penang, covered artificial intelligence, 5G, and the Internet of Things.

The Universidad Politécnica Salesiana, in Cuenca, Ecuador, taught children from low-income families how to build didactic robots at the city’s Stephen Hawking Center.

Contest entries included photos such as this one of an IEEE North South University Student Branch member educating a young child about robots.One of the activities organized by the IEEE North South University student branch, in Dhaka, Bangladesh showed children how to program a robot.Photo: IEEE North South University Student Branch


IEEE held several annual contests to mark the day.

The IEEE student branch at Ajman University, in the United Arab Emirates, received the US $500 first prize in the photography contest’s humanitarian category.

The IEEE student branch at the J D College of Engineering and Management in Nagpur, Maharastra, India, won the long video contest, in which members submitted 30- to 90-second movies. The branch received a $1,000 prize.

In the short video contest, in which clips could be no longer than 10 seconds, the IEEE Faculty of Sciences of Tunis student branch won $500.


More than 100,000 people followed IEEE Day activities on Facebook—twice the number in 2018. Over 200,000 people watched the event’s promotional video, and a webinar drew more than 140,000 viewers.

It’s not too early to start planning for IEEE Day 2020. Festivities kick off on 6 October.

Denise Maestri manages IEEE’s Member and Volunteer Engagement department.

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