The National Chairman, Engr. Dr. Robinson I. Ejilah played host to a delegation from the International Association for the Exchange of Student for Technical Experience (IAESTE) at the National Mechanical Engineering Centre, Abuja on Thursday, 23rd August 2018.
The delegation which was led by the National Secretary and Programme Coordinator of IAESTE Nigeria, Mr Otabor Enoyeze Ahno, and five IAESTE interns who are currently serving out a three month traineeship programme in Nigeria, expressed delight in NIMechE’s preparedness to partner with the 70 year old Luxemburg – based international organisation to foster international understanding, and impact on the development of young people through international technical exchange.
Mr Otabor Ahno informed the NIMechE National Chairman that his visit was a follow-up to the IAESTE’s earlier response to NIMechE’s request for partnership which conveyed its approval on account of the fact that, the Nigerian Mechanical Engineering body has met the critical criterion for registration. Hence, by this approval NIMechE has been duly enlisted as a beneficiary and facilitator of the IAESTE project and programmes in Nigeria, and which include its participation in the IAESTE Exchange programme.
The IAESTE scribe assured the NIMechE National Chairman that this partnership opportunity will open up new frontiers of engagement that will be mutually beneficial to both organizations, and he is looking forward to NIMechE’s active participation in the students exchange platform.
On behalf of NIMechE, Dr. Robinson Ejilah expressed his gratitude for the visit and the gracious approval of NIMechE’s partnership request. He informed the delegation that NIMechE is sincerely desirous of a collaborative working relationship with IAESTE on account of its laudable mission statements, which includes; the higher ideals of promoting international understanding, cooperation and trust among students, academic institutions, employers and wider community, and also for the unique prospect of providing high quality practical training exchange programmes in order to enhance the technical and professional development of budding student mechanical engineers of Nigerian extraction.
He noted that NIMechE’s mission as the premier Institution for professional development, knowledge acquisition and dissemination of mechanical engineering and allied disciplines in Nigeria makes training and skill-building very key in its professional responsibility. He further expressed optimism that with the unprecedented membership profile of NIMechE’s Corporate, and National Students Chapters strewn across the length and breadth of the country in recent years, has so much to offer the emerging partnership with IAESTE, and is keenly looking forward to a sustainable and engaging relationship with the organisation in the coming months.
Dr. Ejilah observed that the visit was timely as NIMechE is presently making conscious effort to re-position itself to meet the critical training needs of young people in mechanical engineering with the aim to making them globally competitive and self-reliant by 2021 as outlined by the Institution’s strategic development master plan. He further expressed confidence that Internship/
traineeship opportunities for students and young engineers through collaboration and partnership are effective strategies to deal with such challenges. He pledged to work very closely with IAESTE, and urged them to work out an implementable plan in line with the specific engagement provisos to get the partnership programme ready for a smooth take-off.
IAESTE has its presence in over 80 countries of the world, with over 2000 volunteers across a network of over a 1,000,000 friends worldwide. A burgeoning number of over 350,000 students have benefited from the traineeship programme since its inception in 1948. It could be seen from the numbers that IAESTE’s impact in the past 70 years has been undoubtedly huge and very empowering through the provision of opportunities to young science and engineering students from around the world with paid course related work experience, gaining valuable work experience in an international environment, provisions of life changing experiences, and developing new relationships and global opportunities.
Suffice it to say that, this collaboration is expected to open floodgates of opportunities in areas of volunteering, skill-building, capacity development, and professional networking on a global scale for Nigerian mechanical engineering students.
At the end of the lively interaction and hearty exchanges, the National Chairman and the delegation posed for a photographic session before their departure.