The student chapter of Engineers Without Borders-USA at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo was founded in 2005 by a core group of students dedicated to making a global impact. Cal Poly’s EWB chapter has successfully implemented projects across the globe, impacting the lives of thousands. We are working towards improving sanitation in India, providing food storage and safer bridges Thailand, building a public school Nicaragua, and creating a bike powered maize mill in Malawi. Our chapter was recently honored as the Premier Student Chapter by EWB-USA, demonstrating the commitment of our members. The enthusiasm and passion of our students is not only seen in our successful project history, but also the growth that our organization has realized in the past two years. In less than two years, our membership has tripled to a total of over 200 active members who are looking to make a difference in purposeful projects.
We currently have projects in four countries: Nicaragua, Malawi, Thailand, and India. Each project is tailored to the communities needs and we go to great lengths to work with the community to produce sustainable solutions.
The Engineers Without Borders Thailand team is working with the community of Pa Kloi in Northern Thailand to implement a solar array repair and expansion project. The project includes battery charging stations, expanded and equitable energy access, and a solar powered freezer to address energy and food security. The team performed a final materials scouting trip in June, and will be prototyping various components this quarter to prepare for a December implementation.
Check out the Thailand team Travel Blog !
Since 2010, the EWB Cal Poly India team has been working to improve sanitation in Sainji. The community is located in the North Indian state of Uttarakhand, nestled in the foothills of the Himalayas, and inhabited by Jaunpuri subsistence farmers. The remote community displays a need for advanced sanitation facilities. The India team is working in collaboration with the Garhwal Organization for the Upliftment of the Needy, a local NGO, to implementing a four-stage wastewater treatment system.
Check out the India team Travel Blog !
The Engineers Without Borders Nicaragua team recently returned from a successful assessment trip for its water distribution project in Cuajachillo, Nicaragua. They completed a land survey of the community, performed water quality testing, and surveyed homes in the community. They also held meetings with the government, where the local Mayor’s office showed their support for the project. Now, the team is currently working on the design for the distribution and filtration system, and plans to start prototyping this quarter.
Check out the travel blog here!
This past September, the Malawi team traveled to implement a new design of a bicycle-powered maize mill. They worked together with the community members to construct the project with materials found in country in order to make it sustainable and replicable for the future. After the trip, the team will be working on improvements of the maize mill design in order to improve efficiency and producibility. Additionally, the team will be working on starting a solar energy project to bring electricity access to the community.
Check out the Malawi team Travel Blog !
Local project’s current project is making a bathroom facility for a little camp called Camp Natoma located just outside of Paso Robles. We are still in the early stages of researching foundation and wastewater systems for the bathroom. Fortunately, a professional engineer recently accepted our offer to work with us on this project, so we have more resources in researching and planning. Finally, we have been planning for an upcoming fall trip to Camp Natoma where we will conduct more soil tests for research on the optimal foundation.
Interested? Fill out the form below to be added to the Engineers Without Borders Cal Poly mailing list. Leave a message if you're interested in joining a specific team, and we'll get back to you! Also, click on the calender below to access the EWB Cal Poly Google Calender where you can find out when upcoming meetings, workshops, and fun social events are taking place.
Questions, comments, or concerns? Contact us through the email provided below. Also, check us out on Facebook and Twitter!
Lydia Van Muckey
Special thanks to our sponsors!
An integral part of our success as an organization comes from the support of our ever extending network of donors. Over half of our funding comes from YOUR support. Whether you are our family, friends, or a company supporter – you can help make a difference. 100% of your donation will go straight to supporting our project teams implement low-cost, practical engineering desigDONATEns that are assisting an estimated 23,000 people. Below are some statistics you might find shocking – all of which we are directly addressing:
80% of the world lives on less than $10 per day.
1.1 billion people have inadequate access to clean drinking water.
2.6 billion people lack basic sanitation.
Close to half of all people in developing countries suffer at any given time from a health problem caused by water and sanitation deficits.
We challenge you to help be a part of the solution. So, give up coffee for a week and donate the money saved to our projects – it could buy a toilet for a family in India. Instead of driving to school or work this week, bike instead and donate the money saved on gas – it could be used to build accessible health care in Nicaragua. That tax return you got, give it up and donate it to our projects – it could install a slow sand water filtration system for an entire village in Thailand.