5 Great Professional Organizations for Computer Engineers

Computer Engineering Professional Organizations

  • Association for Computing Machinery
  • American Association for Artificial Intelligence
  • Association for Women in Computing
  • Computing Research Association
  • Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers

Becoming a part of a professional organization for computer engineers can enhance your career and help you make meaningful connections in your field, according to 4C Blog. These five organizations have strong missions and dedicated members that will help you find a community of engaged professionals that share your professional values and offer opportunities for growth.

1. Association for Computing Machinery (ACM)

A large and well established organization, ACM includes members from a diverse set of professions related to computer engineering, including educators, researchers and industry professionals. Members enjoy benefits such as networking events around the globe as well as publications and conferences geared to professional development and continued learning. Despite being the largest professional organization in the field, ACM manages to create personal communities. In particular, the special interest groups within the organization allow discrete groups of interests or technical specialties to work closely on current issues and ongoing advancements. They also support local chapters to encourage regional networking and collaborations.

2. American Association for Artificial Intelligence

This organization is a nonprofit with a narrow and clearly defined mission to advance artificial intelligence through scientific understanding. Their members work to educate the public about AI, and serve as a guiding voice for policy and practice of research and funding on AI related projects. Their ethical guidelines bring a scientific perspective to the future of AI development. Despite being a somewhat niche interest, if your work or curiosity is related to AI in any way, this organization can be an intellectually engaging opportunity to network with others and join the conversation.

3. Association for Women in Computing (AWC)

This smaller organization was founded in 1978 as on of the first organizations dedicated to promoting women in computing and working toward gender equity in the field. Today, the AWC continues to provide opportunities for members to excel within a male dominated field, including educational programs and professional development, as well as networking opportunities and advocacy. With the goal of reaching as many women in computing as possible, this organization is somewhat unusual in offering national chapters, independent members, and student chapters as well as a strong online presence to allow members to connect with each other at any distance.

4. Computing Research Association (CRA)

CRA is a meta-organization in the sense that it connects over 200 smaller organizations and provides them with a powerful structure through which to shape policy and the future of the field. Their mission is to use partnerships between government, academia, and industry to promote advanced computing. In practice, this means CRA members contribute research to inform policymakers as well as outreach to the public for education and recruitment. They engage in mentorship by and for members, and draw from member volunteers to conduct extensive programming to raise the visibility and quality of computer engineering at all levels of society.

5. Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)

IEEE is the largest technical organization for computer engineers. Their stated mission of “advancing technology for humanity” will give you a sense of the groups values and focus on leveraging technology for the greater good. In practice, this means IEEE works to create a global community of computer engineers to identify and draw attention to areas and problems where technology may alleviate suffering, increase equity, and otherwise shape the world in positive ways. The publications, conferences and networking are similar to other organizations but on a larger scale. What makes this organization truly special, however, is the outreach, educational opportunities, and advocacy its members engage with to bring their expertise to bear directly in the communities where they live and work.

Related Resource: What Types of Careers are in Computer Engineering?

No matter what your goal for joining a professional organization is, there is a society or association that will meet your needs. Professional organizations for computer engineers range from giant, global entities to small, local chapters so find one that appeals to you and offers opportunities that match your interests and values.