Global organization opens chapter
As part of an international organization, the small, newly created UH chapter of the Institution for Mechanical Engineers is setting immense objectives.
A key trait of the IMechE is its international association, but in particular, its license to accredit students with mechanical engineering licenses accepted by firms worldwide stands out.
“It started in London in the 1800s,” said mechanical engineering senior William Hesser. “It now has hundreds of thousands of members worldwide, and Texas actually has one of the bigger affiliate members.”
IMechE supported senior undergraduate engineering projects at UH, including the backing of a hydrogen fuel cell car for last year’s Shell Eco Marathon. The UH student chapter, which was formed in late 2013, aims to bridge gaps between the majors of the College of Technology and the Cullen College of Engineering and expose students to potentially global networking opportunities.
“The entire economy is becoming more global for our students,” said mechanical engineering professor Raresh Pascali. “By having a relationship with an international organization, it opens many doors for us.”
“One reason IMechE is interested in UH is because we are in Houston. Houston is the energy capital of the world, which attracts international attention.”
Local opportunities will be made ripe by the local chapter as well. IMechE has monthly social and networking events hosted by Houston-area members, and a keen student can reach for crucial contacts.
“Part of joining the student chapter requires you to join the affiliate member of the institution at large,” Hesser said. “We go to the socials, which often have many working engineers, some of whom are in leadership positions, attending.”
Strengthening the relationship with IMechE may have further benefits.
“Once this organization provides courses and certifications at UH, we are put on the international arena,” Pascali said. “Then people may come from all over the world to take those courses, maybe take them online.
“It’s about us becoming a world leader in this field.”