Cal Poly SLO students spent their Valentine’s Day studying for upcoming midterms and quizzes. To get ready, SWE hosted their annual midterm study session where students could collaborate, work together, and utilize the test bank to prepare for their tests. To make the day even SWE-eter, we had heart shaped donuts from SLO Donut Company to snack on.
During the first week of Fall quarter, or “0 week,” undergraduate students typically attend the Enormous Activities Fair, an event for exploring hundreds of student groups at our school. The SWE-UCLA chapter was there! We set up our poster board on a table, printed flyers explaining the benefits of becoming involved in SWE-UCLA, and provided an opportunity for interested undergraduates to sign up for our email list which allows people to obtain information about our events. SWE-UCLA executive board officers collectively interacted with hundreds of potential new members by handing out flyers, informing people of our first general meeting, and explaining the various aspects of SWE-UCLA including professional development, outreach, and social events. Approximately 130 people signed up for our email list, which indicates a high interest level in SWE-UCLA amongst new and continuing undergraduates! Despite the hot sun, bustling activity, and enormous amounts of people, many engineering and science students–both women and men–took the first step in getting involved in SWE.
– Christina Daniel, UCLA
In past years, the Society of Women Engineers at the Embry-Riddle campus has been pretty small. We have a small campus (roughly 1,800) and the membership always averaged about 7 regular members. In order to be a successful organization, ERAU SWE needed a change. This past year, the ERAU SWE Board revamped their mission and goals. Instead of focusing on planning events for the community, they first wanted the organization to focus on growing internally.
Along with having our first male ERAU SWE President, the organization also began sub-committees. The three main focuses of the organization had become: research, competition, and outreach. The majority of the members had joined the research or competition committees hoping to learn more in their areas of interest. This was extremely beneficial to the freshman, who would not normally be given hands-on experience until their junior years. By the end of last year, the organization 15 regular members.
Having these goals had helped the few members of SWE focus on areas of growth instead of trying to accomplish what large SWE organizations can achieve on large campuses. The ERAU SWE board believed that having an organization with clearly defined goals will then translate to being able to help the community. This can be seen by starting off the year strong with 30 students, both male and female, attending every meeting. While it may not be much to large campuses, to the small Embry-Riddle campus with time-consuming classes, this is a step in the right direction.
– Dadija Bliudzius, ERUA
Last week was CSULB SWE’s first General Member Meeting. During Week of Welcome and Engineering Welcome Day, SWE officers were able to recruit many potential new members. In our GBM, we introduced the 2014-2015 SWE Officers, the benefits of National Membership, upcoming social events (SWE NSBE Bowling Mixer this Friday), outreach programs that we provide(Women Engineers at the Beach), and upcoming professional guest speakers (Port of Los Angeles).
We emphasized the upcoming SWE 2014 National Conference, as seen in the picture provided. The turn out was very satisfactory, as was the free food for our hungry engineers. To learn more about what we’ll be doing this academic year, check out our website at www.csulbswe.org
– Marianne Gonzalez, CSULB
Every year, Region B make a set of goals for the year to help expand and improve our region. Here are a recap of FY14 goals and successes, and FY15 goals.
3 of the 5 FY14 goals were met: having a ten pair mentoring program, having more section reports in on time, and improving region electronic communication by creating a Region B dropbox. Unfortunately, this means 2 goals were not met: Region B reached only 11,441 K-12 students, not 25000, and Membership retention was only 63%, not the goal of 75%.
This year’s region goals:
- Continue the Mentoring Program with at least 10 pairs
- Continue SWEeter Futures and work towards reaching 25,000 K-12 students
- Submit online at SurveyMonkey: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/omtool
- Have 95% of Section Reports in on time
- Download template/instruction here: FY15_Report Template
- Increase Region B membership by 5% (through recruitment and retention)
- Improve region communications – update the region website and create new email contact provisions
- Complete funding for the Endowed Region Scholarship
Additional Collegiate Goals:
- Retain 50% of members in collegiate sections
- Increase Collegiate to Career Memberships by 3%
- This is a membership that is $50 for the member’s entire education (including grad school) plus the first year as a professional ($100). This is a huge savings!
- Have all sections in good standing
- Have each section submit nominations for a collegiate and an individual award
Membership is an important topic in every SWE section. It is our members that make up SWE, from general members to section leadership to society level leadership. So, how does a section gain new members? And how do you retain the members you’ve got?
- Start the year off strong – finding new members is easiest to do at the start of the year. Try hosting a table at your university’s student club fair. Visit underclassmen classes in the engineering department, such as introductory courses. Host an opening social to welcome back old members and to introduce new members to SWE. Try something different and exciting for your opening social. The University of Utah SWE brought puppies to play with at the opening social, UC Riverside hosted an ice cream social,
- Recognize your members – provide incentives for members to keep coming to events, such as giveaways of SWE swag (conferences and job fairs are a great place to pick up engineering themed goodies) or free food (always popular with college students).
- Use social media – a great way to keep members engaged is through social media. Start a blog or a facebook page. Both are free and easy to use, and can provide a great resource to current and prospective members alike. Use this to ADVERTISE. Nothing drives members away like not knowing what is going on. Use social media, email lists, and flyers posted around buildings to get the word out about SWE.
- Ask your members – everyone wants to know that their voice is heard. Ask your members what they want out the organization. Are they interested in outreach events, or in networking with companies? Are they looking to partner with the local professional SWE section or get additional leadership training? What kind of socials are they interested in: movie nights, resume workshops, how to classes? Surveys, online and in person, are a simple way to ask your members. Another simple way is by simply talking to your members. When you see them between classes, chat with them. After meetings, take time to mingle and get to know your members.
- Encourage participation – invite new members to come to leadership meetings. Suggest to members that they join a committee, or take on some responsibility in planning an event. Help members join SWE at the society level, offer discounts on events and t-shirts for those who join.
If you have a best practice, or something that your section uses to recruit and keep members, please leave in the comments.
Hey if you haven’t heard of the C2C before here is a video and a flyer talking about the benefits of going the C2C Route. I seriously wish this would have been around earlier for me and that I had heard about it sooner! It’s a great way to make your membership last throughout college! If you have any questions, let us know!!!