All the Details on IPC’s Emerging Engineer Program


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Teresa Rowe and Nancy Jaster, in charge of IPC’s Emerging Engineer Program, explain to I-Connect007’s Patty Goldman and Jonathan Zinski how this novel approach to attracting and supporting young people works.

Patty Goldman: Teresa and Nancy, let’s start by having you tell us a little about what each of you does at IPC.

Teresa Rowe: I am a senior director of assembly and standards technology. I work with a technical team, as a staff liaison to the industry preparing IPC standards. My focus is in the assembly area. I’m also one of the leads for the emerging engineer program that we’re going to be discussing today.

Nancy Jaster: I am also in the technical department as a staff liaison. My focus is more on IPC’s design standards, and I assist Teresa with the emerging engineers program.

Goldman: Teresa, can you please describe the emerging engineers program and fill us in on this IPC program?

Rowe:  The  emerging  engineer  program  started about three years ago. At IPC APEX EXPO 2018, it will have reached its third year. It was developed out of a conversation we had about attracting  the  younger  generation  to  join  our  standards activities and to be more interested in  our  efforts  as  a  global  association  for  the  electronics industry. We are attempting to pair emerging engineers, or individuals, who are in the  early  part  of  their  career  in  electronics with someone who has been part  of  a  task  group  or  subcommittee, and part of our standards development   processes,   for   a   longer  period  of  time.  We  like  to  think  of  it  as  a  way  to  bring  the  two  generations  together  to  introduce our older generation to the newer technologies and newer thoughts,  but  also  for  our  emerging  engineers to gain the knowledge and exposure that they need to develop their careers. We  started  very  small  and  we  have  grown  the  program;  we  have  tried  to  tailor  it  each  year  to  not  only  have  our  engineers  grow  in  the  program,  but  also  to  introduce  them  to  more  detailed  projects  as  the  years  develop.  Nancy  came  on  board  at  the  tail  end  of  the  first year.

Jaster: The program is to help these young people  develop  leadership  skills  as  well,  because  it  gives  them  an  opportunity  to  explore  other  areas, and to understand everything about the association.  We’ve  had  real  success  in  having  some  of  our  mentors  take  our  emerging  engineers and make them co-chairs of teams, so they can start learning the leadership skills that they need. It’s an excellent program for people who are  new  in  the  industry  or  who  haven’t  been  there  very  long  to  get  some  leadership  ability,  as well as learn more about IPC and the standards development process. It really helps IPC out because it gives us some fresher views...not that we don’t love our members who have been with us for a long time, but it gets us some newer people involved and starts expanding things, so we can be ready for the future as well.

To read the full version of this interview which appeared in the January 2018 issue of The PCB Magazine, click here.

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