“Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm.” - Ralph Waldo Emerson
Have you ever wanted to give back, to make an impact on the future of your profession? Do you wonder where to begin or if you have the necessary experience?
I have good news: Launching 1 September 2021, ISA is inviting YOU to join me and thousands of dedicated ISA volunteers to give back to the automation community through our global call for volunteers. You can find ways to engage, optimize your skills, and respect your busy schedule. While some roles may identify specific needs, the main thing we need is your enthusiasm!
What do you get back in return for contributing your time and expertise? You can hone your leadership skills, enhance your resume, and expand your professional network. You might also expand your technical knowledge to use in your day job.
I have been volunteering with ISA since 2008. While I might not have as extensive a volunteer portfolio as some of my peers, I am thankful for each of the opportunities in which I have engaged over the last 12 years.
My first step into volunteering with ISA was when the Automation Competency Model (ACM) development began. I was just a stand-in for a friend from Unilever who could not attend. He helped me find an opportunity in which I was passionate, and I signed up with ISA on the spot. I have been involved ever since, including every update to the ACM.
Over the years, I have contributed to training courses, certifications, publications, webinars, in-person and virtual events, as well as many strategic initiatives with governmental and non-governmental entities. I have met many great people along the way and extended my professional and personal networks. I have learned so much from those I volunteered with and call more than a few my friend. But the most rewarding part in all my work has been the opportunity to share my knowledge and contribute to building a better world through automation.
I believe in ISA’s vision and mission and find it a privilege to offer my time in support of this cause. I believe that you will find—just as I did—that you will get more in return than the time you give.
Opportunities for giving back in ISA are wide-ranging, with Divisions and Sections, Society Committees, and Standards Committees. Contributions might involve technical content, events, training course development, certification, as well as Society activities such as strategy and peer recognition.
If you are concerned about impacting your schedule, do not worry. Opportunities are categorized according to expected time commitment: Micro-opportunities involve a quick task such as providing some content; Task opportunities are short-term appointments, such as contributing to course development; Society opportunities are ongoing, with an annual appointment, such as committee membership; and Standards opportunities are long-term, but include activities such as contribution, review, and outreach.
If you do not see something of interest, at least take a moment to complete your volunteer profile. New opportunities are added regularly as projects come up that fulfill ISA's mission and vision. And, if your profile is up to date, it is easier for ISA to match you with opportunities that align with your interests and qualifications.
As always, feel free to contact me if you have any thoughts or comments. Let me know what you think about the new volunteer opportunity portal. If you cannot find something of interest, I am happy to help guide you.
Now, more than ever, I call on our global membership to work together to build a better world through automation.