Monday, 5 December 2016

John Power is elected new UCD EGA President

John Power former Director General of Engineers Ireland was last week unanimously elected President of the UCD Engineering Graduates Association in succession to PJ Rudden who has completed his 4 year term.

UCD Dean of Engineering Professor David FitzPatrick with new EGA President John Power
 and outgoing President PJ Rudden
John graduated from UCD with an honours degree in Engineering and gained experience for 3 years with General Electric in US and South America. He then joined the ESB where he held a large number of diverse roles in Sales, Marketing and Corporate Change before becoming HR Manager in ESB Networks, Executive Director International Services, Head of Supply and finally Head of ESB Corporate Affairs in 2004.

In 2007 he was appointed Director General of Engineers Ireland with membership in excess of 22,000 across all branches of engineering. Engineers Ireland is the only body in Ireland who can award professional titles including CEng and MIEI/FIEI and is responsible for the ethical behaviour of its members.

John served with distinction up to 2015 during a severe economic downturn for many in the profession but succeeded in holding the institution together in difficult times. He greatly lifted the profile and importance of the profession in Ireland through raising the reputation of Irish engineering qualifications internationally and the accreditation of all engineering programmes in our Universities and Institutes of Technology.

He maintained the financial integrity of Engineers Ireland and promoted engineering in our primary and secondary schools, lobbying our elected representatives as appropriate. He developed the strategic direction of Engineers Ireland with the Executive Board and the Council.

In nominating John Power, outgoing President PJ Rudden stated that John has had an outstanding career and successfully led Engineers Ireland from 2007 to 2015.  He greatly enhanced the profile of the profession by promoting the title of Chartered Engineer and assisting the introduction of the new Project Maths curriculum in Second Level Schools.  He also showcased the importance and excellence achieved by major infrastrucutural projects which were helping national and regional development.  He stated 'John is in my view the best person to now bring the EGA to its next level' Rudden concluded.

Outgoing EGA President PJ Rudden congratulates incoming President John Power

Professor David FitzPatrick welcomed John Power as new EGA President and assured him of UCD Engineering College staff support to the EGA.  This support now consists of Clare Ryan in overall Administration together with Katie O'Neill Marketing Manager, Leila Shaddadi as Alumni Relations Officer and Nicola Fortune as Careers and Skills Consultant.

Clare Byrne, PJ Rudden and Nicola Fortune
David also gave the meeting an update on UCD Engineering in terms of the growth and quality of new undergraduate entrants (over 25% female again this year), average points in Leaving Cert and general trends for each discipline. He also referred to the UCD Campus Development Plan to include initiatives planned for the future of engineering.

EGA President John Power, EGA Board Member Nicola Fortune, Dean of Engineering Professor David FitzPatrick
 and EGA Honorary Secretary Dr Vincent Hargaden

David also thanked the outgoing President and the Board for their work for UCD Engineering over recent years. This was echoed by the previous Dean of Engineering Prof Gerry Byrne and EGA Founder Prof John Kelly who were present.  Also present was the EGA's First President Dr Tom Hardiman, former  Director General of RTE.

At the AGM we adopted a new EGA Constitution acknowledging the creation of Corporate Membership which now total 30 engineering firms. This means that the EGA now has a sustainable funding base on which to mature and grow into the future.

EGA Founder Professor John Kelly, EGA President John Power, Past Presidents PJ Rudden and Tony O'Brien
We had Annual Reports from our Hon Secretary Dr Vincent Hargaden and Honorary Treasurer Donal Wyse. I also gave a President's Statement on implementation of the EGA Strategy 2013 - 2016 showing how the EGA addressed issues of Education, Membership, Finance and Marketing.  I included reference to the quality and diversity of Speakers at Spring and Autumn Lectures and Panel Discussions over the past four years.  (See attached photographs)

A new Board was elected with John Power as President. Four long standing members have retired - Sean Murphy, Tony O'Brien (President 2001 - 2004), Michael Loughnane (President 2008 - 2012) in addition to our post graduate member Killian McKenna. Michael was Chair of our Gender Balance Conmittee and Killian McKenna was Chair of our Social Media Committee - both critical issues for the EGA and both of these Committees have very strongly performed over the past two years.

Outgoing EGA Board Member Sean Murphy with outgoing EGA President PJ Rudden

Killian McKenna, PJ Rudden and John Fleming

Also retiring was Dr Aisling Harkin  Career and Skills Consultant for Engineering who was Chair of our Corporate Membership Committee. Aisling who has moved to NUI Maynooth has been replaced by Nicola Fortune who we welcome onto the EGA Board and who will now chair the Corporate Membership Committee which is also doing great work (see EGA Member Corporate logos).

EGA Corporate Members Donal Rigney Roadstone and Cormac Mannion  Energia

Other Board Members reelected were Brendan Butler, Cormac Mannion, Eoin O'Cathain, George Young, Tina Pittock, Marian Ryan, David Timoney, Harriet Walsh and George Young.

EGA Board Members Marian Regan and Tina Pittock with Outgoing EGA President PJ Rudden
In conclusion I sincerely thanked the two Deans David FitzPatrick and Gerry Byrne  and college for their support to the EGA and to me over the past four years. I also mentioned praise for President Andrew Deeks, Vice President Orla Feely and the entire staff of UCD Engineering. I wished all of them and the College of Engineering continued success in the future.

This is my final blog as EGA President.   Thank you for your 'follows' over the past four years.  At the event the Dean of Engineering very kindly presented me with a bronze replica of  'Theatre 53' from the old School of Engineering in Merrion Street which is now the Taoiseach's office.  I was very humbled and grateful for this wonderful gesture.

Dean of Engineering Professor David FitzPatrick presents bronze replica
of Theatre 53 Merrion St. to PJ Rudden

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