Tuesday, 19 June 2012 10:33

Annual Report from President Elect Qiang Zhang

As President-Elect, I am charged with the responsibility of forward planning. My focus of forward planning is how to attract students to the Society, which is one of the most serious challenges our Society is facing. The Society is initiating a Strategic Planning Project to address this issue along with other critical issues that the Society is facing. To get a better picture of the potential “sources” of student members beyond the programs evolved from the traditional agricultural engineering, I compiled a list of bio-engineering related undergraduate and graduate programs offered by universities across the country. ASABE recently completed a study on student engagement, recruitment and retention, conducted by the McKinley Advisors. I have been working closely with a committee of ASABE Board of Trustees to develop action plans, using the results of the McKinley Report. Some specific issues/tasks we are working on are: define, articulate, and market ASABE’s focus in the realm of biological engineering; produce and disseminate a compelling video that highlights the evolution and impacts of agricultural engineering, biological engineering, and ASABE; facilitate student club programming and professional networking; initiate a student contest for creation of short videos illustrating various experiences of agricultural/biological engineering students; attract more students to attend the annual meeting; and develop and distribute a dynamic information piece targeted at employers of agricultural and biological engineering graduates. The committee will deliver its recommendation of action plans to the ASABE Board of Trustees in July, 2012. These recommended action plans may be adopted by CSBE to address the student issue, as well as other membership and identity related issues.

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Qiang Zhang

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