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Professional Development Seminars

Are you ready for some professional development opportunities to bring value to the membership? How about putting on a Professional Development Seminar. These are good for your fellow members and a great way to generate section funds.

What is a Professional Development Seminar?
A Professional Development Seminar is an effective vehicle to transmit professional awareness in a structured event that addresses members’ concerns.  These seminars consist of non-technical topics such as career strategy, career makeover, leadership and communication skills, ethics, project management, etc. Professional Development Seminars can be a half or full day and involve one or more speakers.

Why should we encourage these types of seminars?

Professional Development Seminars promote the professional interests of U.S. IEEE members. They provide a mechanism for communication of members' views on their professional needs. The need may arise from a local economic situation or a request from several members to get information on some pending legislation.  Professional Development Seminars can grow into high quality annual or semi-annual events providing valuable continuing education credits if nurtured properly.

What are the steps to plan a Professional Development Seminar?

Step 1:  Contact Your Section Officers (Six month lead time is recommended)

  • Present and discuss your topic you would like to offer.
  • Discuss budget available, sources of funding
  • Discuss date options, location, and potential speakers (link)
  • Consider planning in conjunction with another section activity

Step 2:  Establish a Committee and Chair

  • Appoint a committee chair that will lead the plan to arrange the project.
  • Recommended committee members include the Section treasurer and Section PACE Chair

Step 3:  Speakers Selection

  • Speaker travel expenses are the responsibility of the Section.
  • Choose National or Local Speakers depending on your budget.
  • The Professional Development Seminar Speaker List is available as a resource to provide National speaker options and program topics.
  • Contact speakers as early as possible in the planning process.

Step 4:  Budget Planning

  • Expense Considerations
    • Location Rental
    • Audio/Visual
    • Speaker Fee, Traveling Expenses, etc.
    • Food
    • Publicity
    • Handouts (might be provided by speaker)
    • Miscellaneous Items (nametags, pens, pads, etc)
  • Funding Sources
    • Local Sections
    • The Region
    • Societies/Divisions
    • Ticket Sales
    • Local Companies and Universities
  • Submit Project Funding Request Form to your Regional PACE Coordinator
  • Example Project Funding Request Forms

Step 5:  Publicize the Conference and Initiate Ticket Sales

  • Advertise at least 30-60 days in advance
  • Section Newsletter
  • Section Email
  • Flyer/brochure
  • Other professional organizations
  • Advertise for CEUs / PDHs

Step 6:  Final Checklist Before Seminar

  • Finalize Agenda
  • Confirm Reservation (Food, Location, A/V Equipment, etc.)
  • Confirm Speakers (confirm presentation needs)
  • Produce Evaluation Forms
  • Speaker Gift and Door Prizes (if desirable)

Step 7:  Day of Seminar

  • Start Event On Time
  • Follow the Agenda Punctually
  • Collect the Evaluation Forms
  • Recognize the Speakers, Committee and Attendees
  • Presentation of Gifts / Door Prizes

Step 8:  After the Seminar

  • Submit Final Funding Report Form to Regional PACE Coordinator
  • Treasurer to follow-up with speakers to get their expense reports
  • Send Thank You Letters to speakers
  • Treasurer to ensure that all the local expenses are paid for
  • Review Evaluation Forms for future considerations
  • Committee debriefing and wrap-up; document lessons learned



Updated: 14 August 2015
Contact: David Iams,

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