EWB Students Win $75,000 EPA Grant
Photo, front row: CEE students Anjili Patel, Sheila Markazi, and Kimberly Parker. Back row: CEE student Peter Maraccini; Laura Hahn, Center for Teaching Excellence; CEE graduate student Ian Bradley; EPA Assistant Administrator Paul Anastas.
Students working on an Engineers Without Borders (EWB) project to bring clean drinking water to a remote community in Guatemala exhibited their research at the National Sustainable Design Expo April 23-25 in Washington, D.C. and returned with two awards: a $75,000 grant from the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) 2010 P3 (People, Prosperity and the Planet) program and a $1,000 American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE)-EWB Sustainable Development Award.
CEE Assistant Professor Thanh Helen Nguyen mentors the group, which includes about 20 engineering students altogether, many of them from CEE. They are researching, designing, and implementing an innovative household water filtration system that uses iron-amended biosand filters for the town of Socorro, Guatemala.
The annual Sustainable Design Expo, held on the National Mall, features an award competition for college and university students who have designed sustainable technologies. The P3 Award is given to the highest-rated student designs based on recommendations from the American Association for the Advancement of Science judging panel. The award includes a recycled glass sculpture and eligibility for additional funding of up to $75,000. The award money is intended to enable winners to further develop their designs, implement them in the field, and move them to the marketplace with the ultimate goal of benefiting people, promoting prosperity, and protecting the planet.
Left to right: CEE grad student Ian Bradley; CEE undergrad Sheila Markazi; Laura Hahn, Center for Teaching Excellence; CEE undergrad Anjili Patel; CEE undergrad Peter Maraccini; CEE undergrad Kimberly Parker; and John Casana, an Associate at Booz Allen Hamilton who serves as the Sustainability Committee Chair for the National Capitol Section of the American Society of Civil Engineers.
The ASCE National Capital Section, ASCE Committee on Sustainability, and the Engineers Without Borders D.C. Chapter jointly sponsor the ASCE/EWB Sustainable Development Award. The $1,000 award recognizes the student team which best represents the project that solves a pressing need in a developing country. Judging criteria include the use of local raw materials, simplicity of design and widespread impact on quality of life for the developing region.
More information is available online about the Guatemala Water Project.