Engineer's Without Borders-UAA


by Jessica Gruenling

ANCHORAGE, Ak-- Using the knowledge and skills they've learned from class and armed with only the resources they can find in western Cameroon, Engineers Without Borders is creating sustainable projects to improve the living condition at one orphanage in Ombe. 

"Primary reason was I wanted to help people I wanted to help people in third world countries and do whatever I could for them.," Matthew Madsen, Member, EWB. 

"It was probably one of the most amazing experiences in my life the kids there were so excited to see us they were really really greatful," McKenzie Bradford, Member, EWB.

So far the students have installed a water catchment, drainage ditches, and  a wood burning cook stove.

"Now when you go over there and they're using the wood burning cook stove all the girls are there and their chatting and helping to do the food preparation and the boys are helping to do the cooking it's a community event now," Madsen.

The students use only the tools they can find in Cameroon, which can cause some challenges.

"I just kept thinking to myself I wish I could have bought a whole box of them from home depot or something and brought it in my suitcase, but that's not the point of engineers with out borders," Bradford.

And it's important to use the materials that people living there can find, so they are able to sustain the projects themselves.

Paul Kelly

"If we don't' show them how we did what we did then when it does fall apart we could have left them in worse shape than when they started," Paul Kelly, President, EWB.

The experience for these engineers can only be summed up in one way.
"I mean of course it feels amazing I don't know what else exactly to say it makes we want to learn the stuff in my engineering classes more it makes me more passionate," Bradford.

Engineers Without Borders UAA contines to see improvements everytime they return.