Category: Social Network


Mairead Rauch graduated from the ERE program in 2013. She then continued her journey of service, and social engineering. Mairead is currently a graduate student and Trinity Fellow at Marquette University, which enables students to advance justice and hope through service based scholarship. I had the pleasure of chatting with her at Mother’s Cupboard in Syracuse, and learned how Mairead had engineered a path of service to improve our world.

Mairead, 2nd from right, with her FrancisCorps friends.

Mairead, 2nd from right, with her FrancisCorps friends.

Here is how Mairead recounted her story. As a student in the ERE program Mairead was seeking a way to combine her faith with her talents in engineering in order to provide needed service to our community. Before graduation she earned a position with FrancisCorps, and during the summer after graduation Mairead began a year of service at Francis House, a hospice home run by the Sisters of Saint Francis. This involved community living and comforting the dying, their families, and working with other volunteers. Mairead was humbled to be part of this experience, and grateful for the insights she gained about herself and interpersonal relationships. Clearly, she also found that community living had some large challenges, but by perservering and weathering challenges, Mairead learned more about her own limits, needs, and gifts. The time at Francis House helped Mairead gain the perspectives of others, and as an engineer, this taught her a bit about how she could better meet the needs of older people and the sick.

After FrancisCorps, in September 2014, Mairead signed on to be a live-in assistant at L’Arche Syracuse. In this capacity, Mairead lived in a community house to share duties with three disabled adults. Over the course of that year, she had the honor of spending time with a core member in her last days, participated in the celebrations of those overcoming prior limits, and took part in the everyday joys and challenges of L’Arche life. Mairead highly recommends a year in L’Arche to anyone who wants to explore their faith life and build true friendships, regardless of your ultimate career goal.

Starting in late summer of 2015, Mairead will be in graduate school at Marquette University, funded as a Trinity Fellow. Her academic home is the Environmental Engineering program, which is small, but well-integrated into the general engineering department. In addition to her engineering classes, her Trinity Fellowship requires 3 special courses: Social Entrepreneurship, Nonprofit Organizations; The Nature of Cities, Urban Policy and Politics; and Social Justice, Social Activism. Mairead sees the classes as a good way to understand the scholarship of social engineering and prepare for service-oriented lives or careers.

In addition to classes, the Trinity Fellowship supports Mairead to conduct 20 hrs per week of service placement during the semester, and engage full-time in service during the summer. Mairead has a service placement with the Milwaukee Center for Independence, which works with disabled people of all ages. At the Center, Mairead will be the Family Partnership Coordinator. In this role, her task will be to develop relationships with the families of disabled children, trying to engineer the Center’s programs to best serve the family needs. Mairead understands this work may appear distant from the typical engineering work for an ERE graduate, and the work she may pursue after graduation from Marquette. Yet Mairead feels prepared to undertake and succeed in this wonderful challenge of service!

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ERE faculty, in collaboration with ERE student-club leaders, coordinated an orientation retreat for freshman at ESF property in the Adirondacks, along Rich Lake near Newcomb, NY. The students spent the weekend in October engaging in a variety of activities, including bonfire games, a hike up Goodnow Mountain, canoe voyages across Rich Lake, visits to the Adirondack Ecological Center, and homework sessions on the beach. Faculty and instructors in attendance included Chuck Kroll, Chris Somerlot, Lindi Quackenbush, and Ted Endreny. Students who represented the ERE Club and coordinated many of the activities were led by Maria Scicchitano and Ben Taylor, Emma Averse, Amanda Chudow, Ariel Roy, Haley Canham, and Nidhi Baid.

Students, Faculty, and family members at Goodnow Mtn Fire Tower.

Students, Faculty, and family members at Goodnow Mtn Fire Tower.

ERE is proud of our high quality students and we work to build strong social networks within the freshman cohort as well as between freshman and the ERE faculty, staff, alumni, and older students to help retain those freshman in the ERE major. This Adirondack retreat is a signature event in our social networking effort, using ESF property to help establish the students sense of place.

Canoe launch onto Rich Lake.

Canoe launch onto Rich Lake.

 

Signaling our allegiance from Goodnow Mountain bedrock.

Signaling our allegiance from Goodnow Mountain bedrock.

 

Gathering of the first wave of students along Rich Lake bonfire.

Gathering of the first wave of students along Rich Lake bonfire.

Calculus and biology homework on the beach, Saturday afteroon.

Calculus and biology homework on the beach, Saturday afteroon.

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 4,400 times in 2014. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 4 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

This fall 2014 semester four ERE students, Taylor Brown, Sara Chin, Thomas Decker, and Ani Zipkin, traveled to New Orleans with ERE professor Douglas Daley to present their work in the first Humanitarian Engineering session of the Water Environment Federation Annual Technical Exhibition and Conference (WEFTEC) history. They were also able to represent ESF’s student chapter of New York Water Environment Association (NYWEA), and to learn more about water treatment and wastewater engineering and those involved in leading the industry.

Outside the WEFTEC convention center the students had the opportunity to help reduce flooding in New Orleans by participating in the Recharge, Restore, Revitalize Hollygrove: Conrad Park Green Infrastructure Enhancements project which provided green infrastructure enhancements through the efforts of 100+ student and professional members of WEFTEC. The green infrastructure project involved the construction of one raingarden and two grass bioswales that will reduce local stormwater damage. Collaboratively, the students helped with hand-grading with shovels and metal rakes soil layers, tiling a walkway and patio, and planting/mulching the raingarden. The team worked from 8am to 4:30pm on this service project, recognizing it as a fulfilling experience to contribute to the implementation of a community improvement with like-minded professionals and students.

ERE's Tom Decker at the community service project (from WEF)

ERE’s Tom Decker at the community service project (from WEF)

WEFTEC opening plenary session featured leaving WEF president speaking on our world's future in water use and treatment.

WEFTEC opening plenary session featured leaving WEF president speaking on our world’s future in water use and treatment.

In the WEFTEC convention center, ERE students Taylor (sophomore) and Tom (senior) presented posters in the Humanitarian Engineering session of the conference about a community water supply project in Buena Vista, Honduras and an alternative energy project in Abra Malaga, Peru. The Honduras project was started in 2007 by SUNY ESF’s Engineers without Borders club. Prior to the project, the village relied for their water supply on a precarious system of rubber tubing lying above ground that was prone to leaks and contamination by disease-causing pathogens. The EWB club worked with partners to design, fund, and build a gravity fed water system that provides 45 homes with reliable, potable water. Taylor was able to discuss her poster with professionals whom were also interested in humanitarian engineering and had done similar water supply projects in other countries. The Peru project was started in 2012 by an ESF alumnus and aims to provide 20 homes with electricity through the implementation of solar panels and small scale hydropower. Tom was able to share the efforts of the Engineering for a Sustainable Society (ESS) club with conference attendees and demonstrate the inspirational work that is the passion of EWB and ESS students.

Networking was great! With attendance of the conference over 20,000 people, Ani, Sara, Taylor, and Tom were able to meet many professionals, students, academics, and practitioners, and these contacts represented regions across the globe. The students participated in technical sessions, learned from practitioners in the enormous exhibition hall, networked at the career fair, and collaborated with NYWEA leaders and the Clarkson University NYWEA chapter. Our ERE students used this trip to learn about innovations in the water industry from the innovators themselves.

Next year’s WEFTEC is in Chicago and the ESF NYWEA chapter hopes to have student members attend for a second year.

Student leaders in the ERE clubs Engineers for a Sustainable Society and Engineers without Borders have summarized their volunteer service work in the attached newsletter. Follow this Newsletter link and dig into stories on Guinea Pigs, Ferreterias and Pressurized Water in Peru, Composting Toilets at Amberations in New York, A Future in Haiti, and the Honduras Community Water Supply project, and the Engineers with Appetites date. You can also learn how the ESS group is expanding on the work of their EWB club, and the faculty of our ERE department can confirm that both clubs will remain at ESF indefinitely.

ERE chair Dr. Ted Endreny visited Colorado State University to strengthen research and teaching collaboration and exchange between ERE and CSU programs in engineering and geomorphology. The two programs have several similarities in mission, but CSU is larger and has more students, faculty, and facilities (it has a student enrollment 10 times larger than ESF). As such, it is strategic for the ERE program to seek partnerships related to technical expertise and research facilities, such renowned faculty Dr. Ellen Wohl and Dr. Brian Bledsoe, and hydraulic flumes with Dr. Chris Thornton. In turn, CSU has recruited several of our ERE graduates, and it is important for us to understand how best to prepare our graduates for their likely career trajectories. The visit to CSU’s Fort Collins campus included a tour of the Engineering Research Center (Daryl Simons and S flume sites) at the Foothills Campus on Laporte Ave (where indoor flumes may extend 125 ft and carry 75 cfs in flow, and outdoor flumes can have 50 ft drops with 160 cfs flows!),  meetings on the main campus in the Natural Resources Building with Dr. Wohl and the Engineering Building with Dr. Bledsoe, a chance to give a seminar, visit with students, and brainstorm with faculty about partnerships and strategies to enrich education in river engineering and geomorphology. A separate tour was taken of impact from the 2013 Colorado Floods in St. Vrain and Boulder Creeks, as well as a visit to the Estes Park site and Man. Below are some photos of the visit and the facilities. For those making the trip to CSU, consider scheduling it to overlap with the ARCADIS sponsored Steve Blake Water Resources Lecture Series; ERE has very strong ARCADIS connections which is another example of how we can partner with CSU!

Sinuous flume in main ERC.

Sinuous flume in main ERC. Photo taken from larger flume testing bridge scour with 1-m wave maker.

Shot from floor of facility, showing sump and pumps. Grad students are trained in experimental setup and equipment maintenance.

Shot from floor of facility, showing sump and pumps. Grad students are trained in experimental setup and equipment maintenance.

Simons Building and Horsetooth Reservoir for inflows to ERC, with outflows to College Lake. More flumes to the south of Simons.

Simons Building and Horsetooth Reservoir for inflows to ERC, with outflows to College Lake. More flumes to the south of Simons.

Access road to S flume, with access to staging areas for experimental equipment. Horsetooth Reservoir embankment to left in photo.

Access road to S flume, with access to staging areas for experimental equipment. Horsetooth Reservoir embankment to left in photo.

S-flume, an inspirational experimental phenomenon to investigate meander bend deflector dynamics, and one of CSU's competent graduate students working with these flumes.

S-flume, an inspirational experimental phenomenon to investigate meander bend deflector dynamics, and one of CSU’s competent graduate students working with these flumes.

Part of the Overtopping Research Facility built in response to Huricane Katrina and levee failure.

Part of the Overtopping Research Facility built in response to Hurricane Katrina and levee failure.

Overtopping Research Facility chute and tail water box. Re-laying inter-locking block to prepare an experiment.

Overtopping Research Facility chute and tail water box. Re-laying inter-locking block to prepare an experiment.

Set of standard teaching flumes and hydraulic benches in CSU's Engineering Building, similar to those used at ESF in Baker Labs.

Set of standard teaching flumes and hydraulic benches in CSU’s Engineering Building, similar to those used at ESF in Baker Labs.

Four Mile Creek damage from 2013 CO floods, tributary to Boulder Creek. Research at CSU will address engineering designs for such floods.

Four Mile Creek damage from 2013 CO floods, tributary to Boulder Creek. Research at CSU will address engineering designs for such floods.

Journey into Rocky Mountain National Park, looking for a peak with intrepid travelers.

Journey into Rocky Mountain National Park, looking for a peak with intrepid travelers.

ERE's Endreny very content to have made this journey and conducted the exploration.

ERE’s Endreny very content to have made this journey and conducted the exploration.

SUNY ESF Office of Communication provides this story: Dr. Ted Endreny recognized for dedication to humanitarian engineering

“While riding a mule to a Honduran village, Dr. Ted Endreny discovered his calling to humanitarian engineering.

“I was on the back of a mule in Honduras going into a village that was getting a water supply system,” Endreny said. “I saw how motivated these people were and realized the best way to conserve our resources is to show people how it connects directly to water supply.”

Since that day in 1991, Endreny has been focused on assisting efforts to bring potable water to isolated areas. For these continuing efforts, he was named a finalist for the Global Humanitarian Engineering Award.

Endreny, chair of ESF’s Department of Environmental Resources Engineering, has been a Peace Corps volunteer and Fulbright Scholar. His development engineering courses have lead many students to pursue careers in international development and innovative design. Besides teaching, Endreny conducts pioneering work focusing on water supply in Honduras.

As the advisor to ESF’s chapter of Engineers without Borders, Endreny is fostering the next generation of humanitarian engineers. The EWB members will be closing out a multi-year project in Buena Vista, Honduras, this year that will provide potable water for the village.

His motivation to better the world, and encouragement of students to keep an open mind, has made him a favorite amongst the students on campus. He was nominated for the award by Thomas “TJ” Decker, junior ERE major, and a member of the Students for a Sustainable Society club.

Endreny has dedicated over 23 years of his life to humanitarian engineering. This spring he will be teaching a course in humanitarian engineering for development workers. The course is open to both engineering and non-engineering students.

The Global Humanitarian Engineering Award, supported by IEEE, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, was presented at the 2013 Global Humanitarian Technology Conference in Silicon Valley, Calif. It was developed to fill a global gap in celebrating the valuable contribution that engineers make towards improving the lives of those less fortunate. In addition, they serve to recognize outstanding achievement, provide role models, and demonstrate less popularly known roles of engineering in society. IEEE’s membership includes computer scientists, software developers, information technology professionals, physicists, medical doctors, in addition to electrical and electronics engineers.

Endreny was one of three finalists for the award, which was won by Dr. Ashifi Gogo for his work to battle global counterfeit medication.”

Tula Goenka, Associate Professor of Television-Radio-Film at SU’s Newhouse School, is also a social activist that connected our ERE program as a sponsor for the film, Rafea: Solar Mama, by directors Mona Eldaief and Jehane Noujaim. The film is about training illiterate Middle Eastern women in India as solar engineers so these empowered women will bring needed electrical power and services to their remote villages. The story appeals to our ERE engineering – they are dedicated to such projects, often called humanitarian engineering or development engineering, and they use their engineering, natural resources, and social skill sets to address critical social and environmental needs, such as bringing water security and energy security to remote villages.

Rafea: Solar Engineer will show at the Human Rights Film Festival and promote Development Engineering dear to ERE students and faculty.

Rafea: Solar Engineer will show at the Human Rights Film Festival and promote Development Engineering dear to ERE students and faculty.

The film Rafea: Solar Mama is enchantingly outlined by the film’s directors as follows: “Rafea is a Bedouin woman who lives with her four daughters in one of Jordan’s poorest desert villages. She is given a chance to attend the Barefoot College in India, where illiterate women from around the world are trained in six months to become solar engineers. If Rafea succeeds, she will be able to electrify her village, train more engineers, and provide for her daughters. Even when she returns as Jordan’s first female solar engineer, she faces the challenge of empowering other women to join her in the struggle to rewire the traditions of the Bedouin community that stand in their way. ” A trailer is available at the film’s website.

Catch this film on Thursday, September 26, in the Joyce Hergenhan Auditorium, Newhouse 3, at 7pm. It is 75 min long in Arabic and English with English subtitles. it will be followed by a Q&A with director Mona Eldaief.

Peter J (PJ) Connell, an ERE student and President of the ESF Undergraduate Student Association, delivered a message of welcome and advice to entering freshman on August 23, 2013 at the ESF-SU opening Convocation ceremony held in the Carrier Dome. This is a high honor and PJ’s address captivated the audience and received thunderous applause; the next speaker to the podium, SU student president Alexandra Curtis, immediately told the crowd that PJ was a tough act to follow. The DO posted this story that overlooks important ESF contributions to the Convocation.

PJ shared the stage with ESF President Neil Murphy, SU Chancellor Nancy Cantor, and other platform party members. PJ’s speech is below:

Greetings parents, faculty, staff, and students, and allow me to say a word you’ve probably heard more than any other over the past few days – welcome. You’re in for a great time.

I’d like to start off by thanking Chancellor Cantor and Preisdent Murphy for their thoughtful thanks and constant dedication to the continued success and improvement of our respective institutions. I think I speak for everyone when I say that you two will be sorely missed by the rest of us here in Syracuse. The list of individuals and groups who deserve thanks and praise for all they have done to make these two schools as well-respected as they are today is endless, so I’d like to offer a general message of gratitude to all parties involved.

Let’s move on to the point of my speech. You new students up in the stands, I’m willing to bet that this day has come faster than you could have ever imagined. You’re now freshmen in college, the first tangible step into adulthood and the chaotic state of life commonly referred to as the “real world”. However, like I said, time flies. Doesn’t it feel like just yesterday that you were amazed to be starting your first day of high school?

Believe me, I’m in a very similar boat. It was just two years ago that I was up there, sitting in your place, feeling “happy, free, confused, and lonely at the same time,” as Taylor Swift would put it. I bet some of you want to retreat into your own personal bubble, while others want to be friends with everyone you lay your eyes on.

Think about that.

Now, as I’ve said, you’re preparing yourselves for the real world. However, if there is one thing I can stress to you all, it’s to cherish every single moment of your college experience, because I promise that it will fly by. For example, let’s look at some events that have occurred in the last year alone, and you will see how fast time flies.

  • In the last year, we watched actress Amanda Bynes go from beloved child star to yet another downwardly spiraling former-celebrity, a la Lindsay Lohan.
  • It’s already been ten months since Hurricane Sandy struck the eastern coast of the United States.
  • Several important babies were born, including George, the royal baby, and North West, child of Kim Kardashian and Kanye, who is everyone’s new favorite direction.
  • The first Hobbit movie was finally released, while the Twilight series was finally, mercifully ended

With that, I’d like to encourage you not to let these college years be just another four years of your life, but to be the best four years of your life. You have four years to leave your mark on your school, and time starts now.

Good luck.

 

Convocation platform party and faculty procession toward the stage.

Convocation platform party and faculty procession toward the stage.

 

Platform party with SU Chancellor Nancy Cantor standing and ESF President Neil Murphy seated, wearing green academic regalia.

Platform party with SU Chancellor Nancy Cantor standing, ESF President Neil Murphy seated, wearing green academic regalia, and ERE student PJ in a black academic gown and seated behind Tadodaho Sidney Hill of the Onondaga Nation, Haudenosaunee Confederacy .

 

ERE staff members Mark Storrings and Paul Szemkow coordinated ERE Departmental efforts to prepare our New York State Fair booth and associated activities for this August 24-25 2013. They considered bringing a scaled river flume so visitors could learn about hydrology and hydraulics but they decided it was time to reach for the skies and expose visitors to remote sensing and image processing with kid-friendly activities related to stereovision and pixilzation. Head on out to the NYS Fair – say hello to your ESF friends!

Image supplied by Doug Daley of a fine resolution motto!

Image supplied by Doug Daley of a fine resolution motto!

Visitors enjoying a 3D image projected on a 2D screen.

Visitors enjoying a 3D image projected on a 2D screen.

Visitors taking in a stereopair image of the NYS Fair grounds.

Visitors taking in a stereopair image of the NYS Fair grounds.

The NYS Fair 2013 Butter Sculpture - given to ESF at the end of the fair for experiments in bioprocessing.

The NYS Fair 2013 Butter Sculpture – given to ESF at the end of the fair for experiments in bioprocessing.

Map of the NYS Fair, with our ESF ERE booth near the Horticulture Building.

Map of the NYS Fair, with our ESF ERE booth near the Horticulture Building.