Paying Back to His Profession

An IEEE Member since his college days, Sundar Venkataraman has regularly attended IEEE Power & Energy Society (PES) meetings and other events annually. “These meetings and conferences gave me an opportunity to meet like-minded people and learn about the latest and greatest in the field,” he said. “It also gave me an opportunity to pay back to my profession through involvement with IEEE Foundation supported programs like IEEE Smart Village, which use technology to solve global challenges.”

For someone passionate about bringing clean energy to remote communities using sustainable business models, “the IEEE Smart Village program is all that and more,” Sundar said. “It provides a comprehensive solution to impoverished communities by combining renewable energy, community-based education and entrepreneurial opportunities. I initially started volunteering my time to help identify communities that could benefit from this program and then furthered the cause by making a donation.”

He opted to donate through honorarium giving. “In my case, the honorarium was for teaching a tutorial on transmission planning to entry-level engineers, which I did out of my passion for the subject and to help update young engineers on this topic quickly,” he explained. “I wasn’t really expecting to be paid for this and saw the honorarium gift as a chance to give back.”

“There are several ways to become involved locally -- by mentoring high school or college students in your community, volunteering your time for professional work groups and committees, participating in programs run by the Foundation that address global challenges, and more,” Sundar concluded. “I believe in giving back -- whether to your community, profession, or education -- and IEEE is a great vehicle for that.”

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