IEEE Special Interest Group on Humanitarian Technology has been revamped in IEEE Student Branch College of Engineering Chengannur. With 350 members who are involved with high spirits in its every endeavour, the Student Branch is doing extremely well with its SIGHT activities this year, especially during the times of SIGHT Week from 25 April to 02 May 2020, under the leadership of SIGHT Coordinator, Robin Francis and Secretary, Deepa Mariam George. Due to the country-wide lockdown in effect with the COVID-19 pandemic, our activities for SIGHT week were all conducted online through various media. What we planned and executed was a string of competitions and webinars that shed light on the values of SIGHT, and helped the participants gain vital insight about the industry’s hot topics that could define their career. These included the following four main programs: Productive Drill, Webinar on SIGHT Day, Revelation and Webinar on ‘Demystifying Product Development’.
IEEE SIGHT College of Engineering Chengannur organised a week-long program named ‘Productive Drill‘, from 26 April to 01 May 2020, for helping students to make the most out of their lockdown days. The program contained several tasks for the students, which were propagated through posters and contents in social media, and aimed at improving the creative and product development skills of the participants. The tasks assigned to them varied from creating a LinkedIn profile to writing an impressive resume and learning a new programming language. The principle behind the program was to encourage the students to make their lockdown period more productive and exhilarating.
As IEEE celebrated its first-ever SIGHT day on 28 April 2020, IEEE SIGHT College of Engineering Chengannur, in collaboration with IEEE Kerala Section SIGHT Group, IEEE Young Professionals Kerala Section, IEEE Kerala Section, LINK and IEEE Student Branch VJCET, organised a webinar that was presented by Mr. Amarnath Raja, who conceived the idea of IEEE SIGHT and was the first Chair of IEEE Humanitarian Activities Ad-hoc Committee. He was instrumental in forming SIGHT within IEEE. Amarnath Raja talked about the structure of IEEE and how HAC and SIGHT fit into the structure. He touched upon the history of how humanitarian technology got introduced into IEEE, and how that influenced the IEEE tagline of “Advancing Technology for Humanity”. He also explained the SIGHT group formation process, and showed several SIGHT projects executed by groups under various Sections. The session saw a total registration count of 143. Participants’ questions were answered by the speaker during the interactive session. Overall, the online session was a big success and helped students to get their doubts clarified before moving on to start new SIGHT groups in their institutions.
IEEE SIGHT in collaboration with IEEE Women In Engineering Affinity Group College of Engineering Chengannur organised a platform to encourage students to pierce deep into their own imagination and mould any random material to develop innovative solutions for unmet needs and problems of women. ‘Revelation’ motivated the students to discover and nurture the creative side hidden in them and made them capable of designing a product from a simple daily use commodity by implementing technical and design concepts. The main focus of the event was to draw the attention of students to the issues faced by women and develop a product that would make their life easier. They were asked to upload the project abstract, details on design and technical modifications within five days. The participants were given proper guidance to make their ideas more developed so as to submit a detailed report by 08 May, 2020. These ideas were valued based on design, feasibility and technical modifications. Prize money was offered for the best innovative idea. Their developmental potential and good work rewarded them well in this contest. The event had been a great opportunity for them to improve their creative thinking as well as product development skills. The prize winning concepts included a “Smart Taser”, a “Stir Robot” and “Safe Stain”.
Webinar on ‘Demystifying Product Development’, conducted by Dr. K. R. Suresh Nair, Chief Technology Advisor, Foundation for Innovation and Social Entrepreneurship, provided students with a clear idea on how to proceed with product development ideas, and how to keep them relevant. The event was conducted through the Google Meet app on 02 May 2020. He explained how innovations should stay relevant to the present needs, and described the prerequisites required for a genuine innovative idea. Furthermore, he talked about the different stages in development and various softwares you can use to aid you in your development, along with advice on how to present your ideas, using an example of how a device was innovated to discover oral cancer in its early stages without the need of multiple biopsies. He explained to the students about the drawbacks of the product and how those were rectified. The webinar gave its participants a clear idea, on how to convert their concepts into patentable, industry-worthy products that could add value to humanity.
We, at IEEE Student Branch College of Engineering Chengannur, have always been pushing the envelope in delivering the benefits of an IEEE membership to our members, and in upholding the core values that IEEE and SIGHT stand for. With the rejuvenation of the SIGHT Group, that has been comparatively dormant in the past few years, we are determined to keep on contributing our fair share to the engineering society and humanity through our activities.