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The Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at AUK Announces the Establishment of the AUK-IEEE Student Branch

In a reception held last week at the AUK Auditorium, the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at AUK announced the kick-off of the AUK-IEEE (The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) Student Branch. The evening also featured the launch of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Seminar Series 2014 (ECESS'14) held under the theme of Triple-Es: Energy, Ecology, and the Environment. The event was attended the AUK President, Deans of Colleges, AUK faculty, staff and students, as well as selected industry invitees. Keynote speech and presentation were given by Professor Farid B. Chaaban, Chair of the Electrical Engineering Department at the American University of Beirut (AUB).

The AUK-IEEE Student Branch is the second branch in Kuwait; it received its international affiliation on the 11th of March, 2014. "It is an added value to the academic and extra-curricular portfolio of our engineering students," said Dr. Issam Damaj, Chair of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, during his opening speech. "It is a high outpost for an effective recognition on the national and international levels, and a high outpost for a constructive community engagement," he added.

Kholod Al-Shmary, the first Chair of the AUK-IEEE Student Branch felt that before the establishment of the branch, there was no outlet for engineering students to "meet, share ideas, provide support, or solve problems." With the AUK IEEE Student Branch, "students will have the opportunity to meet and learn from their fellow students, as well as faculty members and professionals in the field."

Similar to its correspondent branches worldwide, the IEEE Student Branch at AUK is expected to offer a range of activities and advantages to students, including the IEEE membership, project exhibitions, meetings, training, and field trips. Through AUK-IEEE Student Branch, students can participate in regional conferences, workshops, and competitions as IEEE members. Professor Chaaban provided an overview of the IEEE student branch at AUB, emphasizing that its activities extend beyond engineering students to incorporate the whole student body and the wider local community.

Flowing from his talk about community engagement and social responsibility, the keynote speaker gave a presentation (A Century of Energy Conversion, Prospects for the 21st Century) reflecting the rising concerns of scientists and engineers about the impacts of energy systems on the environment. According to Professor Chaaban, throughout the 20th century, energy industries have been giving attention to the 'economic' factor of any operation, "the main objective was to achieve the most economically feasible operation". However, with the rising environmental concerts, "the environmental (ecological) factor has been added into this process and hence scientists and engineers are currently becoming more concerned with the 3 E's: Energy, Economy, and Ecology," said Professor Chaaban.

Following the keynote speech, the IEEE Student Branch presented the ECE seminar series as its inaugural educational activity this semester. Introduced by the master of ceremonies, Dr. Mohamed Al Abd, the first talk discussed e-Mobility in Kuwait and was presented by Dr. Detlef Hummes, Assistant Professor of Electrical Engineering at AUK. E-mobility (or electro mobility) is the concept of using the-state-of-art electro-vehicles to address environmental and economic concerns. According to Dr. Hummes, "sustainability is becoming a main goal in Kuwait, the region, and the world. With the advancement in e-mobility, the Kuwaiti society can play a pioneering role in the region if adopted such a growing technology." The talk investigated the impact of e-mobility on the Kuwaiti environment and economy, as well as its electrical infrastructure. It addressed issues, such as, expansions of current infrastructure to include quick charging stations and the national economic benefits of introducing e-mobility solutions.

The aim of the ECE seminar was to help students understand engineering ethical and professional responsibility, to understand the impact of engineering solutions in economic, environmental, and societal contexts, and to gain knowledge of contemporary issues surrounding the practice. Other anticipated events of the IEEE Student Branch include the Electrical and Computer Engineering Exhibition coming up in December 2014, the Student Professional IEEE Awareness Conference, and the establishment of a Student Branch Library for IEEE publications at AUK. The branch also plans to continue co-organizing the annual ECE seminar series.

Keynote Speaker, Professor Farid B. Chaaban, Chair of the Electrical Engineering Department at AUB

Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, Dr. Rawda Awwad Presenting Certificate of Appreciation to the Keynote Speaker

Professor Farid Chaaban with AUK President, Prof. Dr. Nizar Hamzeh

Dr. Issam Damaj, Chair of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at AUK

Dr. Detlef Hummes, Assistant Professor of Electrical Engineering at AUK

Dr. Mohamed Al Abd, Assistant Professor of Computer Engineering at AUK

Group Photos Featuring AUK Management, Faculty, Students, and Guests

Q & A Session


Released by the Office of Public Affairs on the 19th May 2014

Photography by the Office of Public Affairs (C) 2014

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