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Students restart organization to help those in need

The UIC community is encouraged to be leaders and facilitate positive social change through service. Now, all engineering students have a new opportunity to help others through the re-established Engineers Without Borders USA at UIC (EWB-USA at UIC).

EWB-USA at UIC is a community of driven students and professionals who build a better world through engineering projects that empower communities to meet their basic human needs and equip leaders to solve the world’s most pressing challenges.

The founding members recently received official approval from both UIC Campus Programs and EWB-USA to start a UIC chapter. The chapter is off to a strong start with approximately 20 people attending general meetings. However, there is still a lot of room for more students to join the revamped organization.

Apart from making the world a better place, the organization provides members with the opportunity to gain engineering experience, boost their resume, travel, and network with mentors from the industry, other student chapters and their mentors, faculty advisors and classmates.

UIC’s previous chapter worked on a water quality improvement project for the residents of Cerro Alto, Guatemala, in 2006. The chapter made several assessment trips and implemented a project to bring safer water to the 1,200 residents for cooking, drinking and bathing.

“We are excited to finalize the start-up process with EWB-USA so that we can begin working on a project,” said Jessica Taskila, president of EWB-USA at UIC. “We are looking into the option of re-establishing our relationship with Cerro Alto, Guatemala, the village with whom UIC’s previous chapter of EWB-USA worked.”

The group also is considering other programs, added Taskila, a Civil and Materials Engineering student.

“Then we will start identifying professional mentors who can guide us as we dig into some real engineering work,” she added.

For more information or to get involved with EWB-USA at UIC, contact Jessica Taskila at