is IEEE membership worth it?

Thread Starter


Joined Mar 23, 2009
You might think the thread question is stupid, but hear me out first.

I'll be returning to school this fall as a junior/senior in the EcEn program. My available time has been very stretched(understatement) in previous college experiences. I've often thought about buying into IEEE membership and going to campus meetings; people organized in groups can accomplish more than the "lone engineer" can, and in addition, I hear that participating in the IEEE can help you land that first job. I just don't want to join only to find my grades dropping because of IEEE involvment. My question to those of you who have been here before is, would the cost of the time involved be worth the potential benefits under the general circumstances? If you were a college IEEE member, was it worth it, or if you weren't, would you have joined if you could have redone things?

I'm all ears...


Joined Apr 2, 2009
An IEEE membership will surely help your career prospects. You will be updated with current technologies and it looks good on your CV even though you don't use it at all - yes it's funny but this is how it is - employers like something impressive, but they will only be able to know what you are really capable of only if they engage you. At first they can do nothing other than just to trust your CV and evaluate your interview with them - again this is relative because it is compared to other candidates.

You can join the IEEE and still find time to learn by managing your time properly. You can even join and do nothing at all. It's all up to you. But reading into the IEEE stuffs will enhance your understanding of engineering and be aware of limitations involved in engineering. Why do we have so many design techniques in electronics is simply because nothing is perfect. Awareness of developments and many more. So, overall, it will help and you don't have to do anything if you don't want to or don't have time to.


Joined Feb 4, 2009
I am also interested in IEEE but have more or less no clue what good it is. Information is nice, but are there any projects that members of IEEE work on together that help improve electronics and modern technology?

I will defintely join someday just because it sounds cool and shows that I'm really into my career and take it seriously but what practical uses does it have? Remember engineers are all practical. Screw theories, I just want to build it already. ;)
I think the activities of the IEEE vary greatly in each of the sections around the country and around the world. Many sections have websites and newsletters that show the activities that are being done. Try to locate the section information on the website. For example, in Pennsylvania you have a section in Pittsburgh at

Their meetings are more technical lecture types of things with some social activities and some educational things that interact a little with students and others. It is not a get together and build stuff type of society. If that is what you are looking for you need to find more of a hackerspace type of group, of which there is one in Pittsburgh as well,, that is just starting.

The IEEE offers great amounts of technical information through conferences and journals. They also offer a lot of insurance and financial type of services for its members.

I think delving into the local sections will give you more of an idea if the IEEE is something that you would like to join. The names and email addresses of the officers of the local sections are on the web. Email them and see what they have to say... Hopefully they can give you a good reason for joining...


Joined Feb 4, 2009
Thats awesome because I happen to live in Pittsburgh and attend the University of Pittsburgh. I already belong to IEEE at the University of Pittsburgh just by being in the electrical engineering department. Darn now you can always find me because I spend a lot of time in my school. ;)