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November 9th, 2011
Are you involved in your local section of AIChE? Do you meet with fellow chemical engineers the other 360 days of the year you aren't at the Annual Meeting? If so—congratulations, and keep up the good work! [caption id="attachment_30626" align="alignright" width="210" caption="LSC luncheon participants hard at work discussing hypothetical section scenarios."][/caption] For anyone interested in getting involved with his or her local section (LS), or for those currently leading or interested in leading a LS, the AIChE Local Sections Committee (LSC) is for you! The LSC provides resources and support to sections across AIChE borders and serves as a clearinghouse for information and contacts. The LSC meets at every Annual Meeting to provide updates on LS activity and promote networking across sections. The LSC also offers leadership development opportunities that help AIChE members sharpen their personal organizational and management skills.
2. Several years ago, a charismatic engineer took over as chair of a section in a relatively large city. Before the engineer showed up, activity at the section was inconsistent, making it difficult to gain new members even though there was a decent number of engineering companies in the city. Immediately, the engineer was able to motivate the existing leadership and single-handedly recruited a number of new members into the group. The engineer had ambitions of expanding the activities of the section, so the engineer aggressively pursued the companies in the city to sponsor or support activities in the section. Unfortunately, the engineer was transferred to a new office across the country and the existing leadership in the section struggled to maintain the activities organized by the engineer.
Eventually, the membership dropped again and corporate contacts soured because the existing leadership didn’t have the charisma or motivation to execute the ambitious projects originally organized by the engineer. The section has limped along as they try to find another person to fill the role of the engineer and save their section.