Sunday, June 03, 2007

The Cedarville Team

Well, you've probably been wondering if we dropped off the edge of the earth sometime in the last two weeks, but we're still here. On May 18, we had a team of 11 guys arrive: 1 former SIM-Liberia missionary (Ray Hutchison), 8 Engineering students (well, Earl and Alan are recent grads, so not all were students) and 2 of their professors (Drs. Tom Thompson and Larry Zavodney) from Cedarville University in Ohio. It was all consuming, but we had a great time!

One group of the guys were working on a map of the campus, especially tracing the water lines.

Another pair built a new fountain spray cooling system for the generators.

And the last group built an incinerator for the hospital (here it is about half done).

They worked very hard, resisting the temptation to hang out on the beach on some pretty hot days. It paid off, because all the projects got done. They also squeezed in two trips out of town (in two different groups) where they stayed in village homes and hiked through the bush. Several of them were interviewed on ELWA's youth radio program explaining what it takes to pursue a career in Engineering (math, science, more math, more science!). They followed up on that with a "live" session for local high school students to encourage young people to study Engineering in this reconstruction era in Liberia. The guys were really great interacting with people - kids, high school students, their workmates at Services, the ELWA Managers. They made a very good impression for their college and their profession. We are hoping to get yearly visits from Cedarville students, so it was great to start off so well.
On a more personal note.... it was just fun for us. Jared spent a day with the water pressure measuring team and it was great for him to get an idea what engineers actually do (we sure noticed them doing a lot of measuring). Several evenings, our living room was invaded with young men on computers....working on the map, analyzing pump pressures and systems, checking their email. It was a little geeky (no offense guys), but if you know us, you know that we were lovin it. They sat around and talked shop and it was fun to listen in, answer their questions and encourage them to keep trying. I was a little worried when a couple things weren't going so well, but because they didn't seem discouraged I realized that they are used to running into problems and questions and having to probe deeper and keep trying. One of the professors said at the seminar that engineers solve problems, so I guess that means they are used running into them. I admired their grace and persistence. And we thanked God for blessing the work of their hands so that the projects ended on a good note.
Thanks Larry, Tom, Ray, Alan, Earl, Nathanael, Mordecai, Greg, Scott, David and Tyler for coming - have a great summer! We miss you already, and we'd take any one of you back anytime.
Meanwhile, Jared and Caleb finished up school. More on that soon.

2 comments:

obee1 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Orbra said...

It is great to see the results! I saw the excitement before they left and expect to hear more now they have returned. It's a matter of each group inspiring the other and it looks like it will continue to happen.