UMR students to assess Honduras site

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On March 13, 2007

Spring break will draw thousands of college students to the nation’s shoreline, but three University of Missouri-Rolla students have a different type of water on their minds.

Members of UMR’s Engineers Without Borders (EWB) student chapter will leave March 24 for an eight-day trip to Pimienta, Honduras, to assess potential community projects. The projects will address health, sanitation and other needs in the community. Possible projects include:

  • elevated water storage, which would affect 400 families
  • a pedestrian bridge, which would benefit more than 1,000 school children and community members
  • outside latrines for homes without sanitation, which would benefit 300 families
  • stairs for an inaccessible school, which would benefit 300 students
  • construction of a library and a computer lab, which would benefit 1,000 students

Following the trip, the UMR EWB team will select one project to design and implement during the 2007-08 academic year.

Dr. Rick Stephenson, EWB’s faculty advisor and professor of civil engineering, will travel with the students and provide guidance. The three UMR students traveling to Honduras are:

  • Katie Fritts of Kansas City, Mo., a sophomore in mechanical engineering.
  • Will Kirby of Elkhorn, Neb., a senior in architectural and environmental engineering and project leader.
  • Lucas Rottler of Waterloo, Ill., a junior in architectural and environmental engineering.

Similar to the more established Doctors Without Borders, EWB works to improve the lives of people around the world by building infrastructure such as water systems and other engineering endeavors.

For more information about the UMR EWB chapter, visit

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On March 13, 2007. Posted in News