COMMON Belgium Brings the Roots of IBM Power Systems to IT Youth

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Dr. Frank Soltis is on hand to help launch Belgium's Young inspired Power Professionals group, or YiPPs. 

COMMON Belgium has launched the YiPPs—a younger generation of its user group—with a ceremonial ribbon cutting by Dr Frank Soltis, former IBM chief scientist and founder of the AS/400. Members of YiPPs, which stands for Young inspired Power Professionals, Belgium, have their own special needs, and who could better frame answers to their career questions than other professionals their own age? 

Recent and upcoming IT graduates represent a huge talent pool waiting to be tapped to regenerate IBM user groups. The best channel in which to reach these talented young people is through a teaching environment at their current academic institutions or through their new employers. Another way to create awareness is by bringing the students to the annual COMMON Europe congress and allow them to meet peers from other countries. COMMON Belgium did just that two years ago, and it was a precursor to the newly formed YiPPs Belgium. 

COMMON Belgium in mid-October organized a full-day event at one of the most important university colleges in Antwerp, the Karel de Grote-Hogeschool. Working closely with the Applied Informatics department, the user group invited students, faculty, alumni, and industry contacts to attend the event. The guest of honor, Dr Frank Soltis, challenged attendees with his provocative speech, “Is There a Future for Open Systems?” “No” was his one-word answer, and he expanded it by illustrating how all major players are creating their closed environments to hold onto their clients.

The new group in Belgium has chosen a name similar to the YiPs in the U.S., or Young i Professionals, but has given it a local flare. The YiPs were formed about six years ago for professionals focused on the IBM midrange platforms who were relatively new to the world of IBM i and Power Systems. Through meetings at COMMON and through the YiPs dedicated website, the YiPs focus on education and information sharing. Following the success of the YiPs in the U.S., new initiatives have followed in Austria, Germany, Sweden, and South Africa.

 

YiPPs_Belgium
Dr. Frank Soltis, founder of the AS/400, cuts the ceremonial ribbon marking the formation of YiPPs Belgium - the Young inspired Power Professionals. Attending from left are Jens Van Hoof, Ranga Deshpande, and, right, Govert Lambrechts.
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"There clearly is a lot of interest in this type of networking," says Ranga Deshpande, vice president of COMMON Europe and Belgium. "Through the website, young professionals share their experience, not only about technology, but also about general work-related themes—how you can prepare for a job interview, for example, or what information you include in your resume. Networking; that is what it is all about," says Deshpande.

Formation of YiPPs Belgium was spearheaded by Jens Van Hoof and Govert Lambrechts, alumni of Karel de Grote-Hogeschool, and who now are working at I.R.I.S. ICT. The company agreed to partner with the school and COMMON Belgium to hold the seminar.

COMMON Belgium YiPPs Inaugural

At the October seminar, IBM Belgium’s Dr. Hans Van Mingroot gave a talk on, “Why College Students Need to Play an Active Role in Their Own Future and How?” in which he challenged the youth in the audience to get more involved in their careers. He urged young people be creative but go a step further and innovate.

Other presentations included, “Close Alignment of the KdG University College Curriculum with the Industry” presented by Koen Schram, head of the school's Applied Informatics department; the “Green Datacenter," (with a live demonstration of the Montpellier datacenter) presented by Dr. Jean-Michel Rodriguez, worldwide lead architect for green and energy efficiency, IBM France, and “Trends and Evolution in IBM Infrastructure” presented by Ludwig Van den berg, technical director, STG Benelux, IBM.

About Karel de Grote-Hogeschool (KdG) Applied Informatics Department

The KdG University College is a Catholic School with more than 9,000 students and 1,000 employees. It's the largest university college in Antwerp, Belgium, the second largest university college in Flanders, and the fifth largest institute of higher education. For more than 40 years, the Applied Informatics course at KdG has graduated high-quality IT personnel. By working closely with industry, students are taught the IT skills of tomorrow, which makes them instantly employable for jobs including application development, IT management, and systems and network administration. KdG strongly believes that teamwork allows both students and staff members to acquire competences, such as knowledge, skills, insight and attitudes, that are essential in a working context as well as in the broader context of society. For more information, visit www.kdg.be  or contact Koen Schram, head of Applied Informatics at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

About Young inspired Power Professionals (YiPPs) Belgium

YiPPs Belgium is a part of COMMON Belgium. Its members are young IT professionals working with IBM Power systems or students following courses on IBM Power systems. YiPPs focus on networking, information sharing, education and advocacy. YiPPs Belgium was launched on October 14, 2010. For more information on YiPPs Belgium, visit www.YiPPs.be or please contact Philippe Vanden Bussche at +32 475 750 150 or at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

About COMMON Belgium (CB)

COMMON Belgium, an IBM Power Systems user group, was founded in 1984 by like minded IT professionals to find solutions to their common problems. Its aims are to “boost peer networking, provide advanced education and training, and accelerate an ongoing open dialogue with IBM.” It is a nonprofit association of companies and organizations involved in IT solutions, using IBM midrange architecture and solutions. COMMON Belgium is affiliated with COMMON Europe. For more information, please visit www.common.be or contact Gustaaf Legroux, COMMON Belgium president at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

COMMON Belgium has launched the YiPPs—a younger generation of its user group—with a ceremonial ribbon cutting by Dr Frank Soltis, former IBM chief scientist and founder of the AS/400. Members of YiPPs, which stands for Young inspired Power Professionals, Belgium, have their own special needs, and who could better frame answers to their career questions than other professionals their own age? 

Recent and upcoming IT graduates represent a huge talent pool waiting to be tapped to regenerate IBM user groups. The best channel in which to reach these talented young people is through a teaching environment at their current academic institutions or through their new employers. Another way to create awareness is by bringing the students to the annual COMMON Europe congress and allow them to meet peers from other countries. COMMON Belgium did just that two years ago, and it was a precursor to the newly formed YiPPs Belgium. 

COMMON Belgium in mid-October organized a full-day event at one of the most important university colleges in Antwerp, the Karel de Grote-Hogeschool. Working closely with the Applied Informatics department, the user group invited students, faculty, alumni, and industry contacts to attend the event. The guest of honor, Dr Frank Soltis, challenged attendees with his provocative speech, “Is There a Future for Open Systems?” “No” was his one-word answer, and he expanded it by illustrating how all major players are creating their closed environments to hold onto their clients.

The new group in Belgium has chosen a name similar to the YiPs in the U.S., or Young i Professionals, but has given it a local flare. The YiPs were formed about six years ago for professionals focused on the IBM midrange platforms who were relatively new to the world of IBM i and Power Systems. Through meetings at COMMON and through the YiPs dedicated website, the YiPs focus on education and information sharing. Following the success of the YiPs in the U.S., new initiatives have followed in Austria, Germany, Sweden, and South Africa.

 

YiPPs_Belgium
Dr. Frank Soltis, founder of the AS/400, cuts the ceremonial ribbon marking the formation of YiPPs Belgium - the Young inspired Power Professionals. Attending from left are Jens Van Hoof, Ranga Deshpande, and, right, Govert Lambrechts.
_____________________________________________

"There clearly is a lot of interest in this type of networking," says Ranga Deshpande, vice president of COMMON Europe and Belgium. "Through the website, young professionals share their experience, not only about technology, but also about general work-related themes—how you can prepare for a job interview, for example, or what information you include in your resume. Networking; that is what it is all about," says Deshpande.

Formation of YiPPs Belgium was spearheaded by Jens Van Hoof and Govert Lambrechts, alumni of Karel de Grote-Hogeschool, and who now are working at I.R.I.S. ICT. The company agreed to partner with the school and COMMON Belgium to hold the seminar.

COMMON Belgium YiPPs Inaugural

At the October seminar, IBM Belgium’s Dr. Hans Van Mingroot gave a talk on, “Why College Students Need to Play an Active Role in Their Own Future and How?” in which he challenged the youth in the audience to get more involved in their careers. He urged young people be creative but go a step further and innovate.

Other presentations included, “Close Alignment of the KdG University College Curriculum with the Industry” presented by Koen Schram, head of the school's Applied Informatics department; the “Green Datacenter," (with a live demonstration of the Montpellier datacenter) presented by Dr. Jean-Michel Rodriguez, worldwide lead architect for green and energy efficiency, IBM France, and “Trends and Evolution in IBM Infrastructure” presented by Ludwig Van den berg, technical director, STG Benelux, IBM.

About Karel de Grote-Hogeschool (KdG) Applied Informatics Department

The KdG University College is a Catholic School with more than 9,000 students and 1,000 employees. It's the largest university college in Antwerp, Belgium, the second largest university college in Flanders, and the fifth largest institute of higher education. For more than 40 years, the Applied Informatics course at KdG has graduated high-quality IT personnel. By working closely with industry, students are taught the IT skills of tomorrow, which makes them instantly employable for jobs including application development, IT management, and systems and network administration. KdG strongly believes that teamwork allows both students and staff members to acquire competences, such as knowledge, skills, insight and attitudes, that are essential in a working context as well as in the broader context of society. For more information, visit www.kdg.be  or contact Koen Schram, head of Applied Informatics at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

About Young inspired Power Professionals (YiPPs) Belgium

YiPPs Belgium is a part of COMMON Belgium. Its members are young IT professionals working with IBM Power systems or students following courses on IBM Power systems. YiPPs focus on networking, information sharing, education and advocacy. YiPPs Belgium was launched on October 14, 2010. For more information on YiPPs Belgium, visit www.YiPPs.be or please contact Philippe Vanden Bussche at +32 475 750 150 or at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

About COMMON Belgium (CB)

COMMON Belgium, an IBM Power Systems user group, was founded in 1984 by like minded IT professionals to find solutions to their common problems. Its aims are to “boost peer networking, provide advanced education and training, and accelerate an ongoing open dialogue with IBM.” It is a nonprofit association of companies and organizations involved in IT solutions, using IBM midrange architecture and solutions. COMMON Belgium is affiliated with COMMON Europe. For more information, please visit www.common.be or contact Gustaaf Legroux, COMMON Belgium president at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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