Graham Tubbs, CEO of TaG GH Consulting, has been an IET member his entire working life, joining as a graduate member in 1966, and most recently becoming an IET Fellow in 2016.
It was around this time that his relationship with the organisation strengthened, as he began to support the IET’s scholarships and bursary schemes through financial donations.
“As you get to a certain age you realise how important the opportunities presented to you were and I became more thankful for what I’d been offered.
“Looking back on my career and the opportunities I’d been presented made me think I really should give back to the engineering community for what it did for me. That’s what underpinned my decision to begin donating to the IET,” he says.
Graham’s had a full and varied career within the semiconductor industry, starting back in 1966 when he joined Texas Instruments as a new graduate. Here he had the opportunity to be involved in the development of the processor chips used in the TI30, Little Professor calculators and Speak and Spell learning aids before moving on to a position at Intel.
This entailed relocating from Bedford, UK to Chandler, Arizona, USA, and heralded the start of a 20-year career at the organisation that included management of IC development engineering, product and strategic marketing and business development.
“Over the years I’ve accumulated more than 25 patents, but you might say my biggest claim to fame is being instrumental in getting the first Blackberry microprocessor particular program off the ground,” he says proudly.
The Futures Fund
Graham’s donations to the Futures Fund help finance a number of scholarships for engineering apprentices and students, which are delivered through the Future Talent Awards.
These awards inspire and support the next generation of engineers to achieve their full potential and hopefully go on to a career in the sector.
See the impact your donation is making
While some donors like to keep their involvement to simply gifting money, others like to be more involved.
In Graham’s case, the Atlantic Ocean has been no barrier, as he’s been able to join Zoom meetings with successful award applicants, plus his family has also acted on his behalf, presenting at IET award ceremonies in London.
“I’m very appreciative of the chance to meet some of those who benefit from my donations, as I’m able to see the impact I’m making and discover how my donation is helping these young people as they train to become engineers.
“It’s thrilling when you see a student you supported graduate. I remember the very first student I sponsored – I was lucky enough to be able to watch their graduation online. It’s a really satisfying feeling.”
Graham feels it’s important for people like him to donate to the IET as a way of giving back to the community that supported them during their own careers.
“It’s really fulfilling. We all need a bit of help in the early days and now you’ve come full circle and can provide that.
“Believe me, it’s absolutely thrilling to see a student you’ve supported through an IET programme at their graduation ceremony and into their first jobs. It’s very satisfying, you might say, as I feel I’m beginning to repay the IET and the British education system in general for all it’s done for me.”
Graham hopes that by sharing his experience as a donor to the Futures Fund more people will follow his lead and get behind the IET’s efforts to engage and enthuse the next generation.
“If you’ve had a good career, I’ll bet some part of that will be due to the fact you’ve been involved in this great organisation. If that’s the case, and you can afford it, then why not give something back to the cause?
“I mean, there are over 154,000 IET members today, just imagine what the Futures Fund could achieve with donations from just 1% of them!
“Have you ever thought about giving back to this wonderful profession? If you have any interest in doing so, I say just jump in! So much can be done to support the next generation through your donations – whether that’s financial, or through volunteering. Why not see how you can help?”