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Minnesota State University, Mankato
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Engineers without Borders in El Salvador

The Minnesota State University, Mankato chapter of Engineers without Borders traveled to Santa Rosa Senca, El Salvador in May.


The Minnesota State University, Mankato chapter of the organization, Engineers without Borders traveled in May to Santa Rosa Senca, El Salvador, where they performed a thorough assessment of the area to plan the implementation of a new water system for the community.  While in El Salvador, students assessed the current water system, hoping to soon provide the community of Santa Rosa Senca with a reliable source of clean, potable water.

Minnesota State Mankato students first traveled to El Salvador in 2013. Junior and senior students worked in a neighboring community. After providing a new water system for that community, they ventured into Santa Rosa Senca. The previous group did complete an assessment of Santa Rosa Senca’s water system. However, Santa Rosa Senca constructed an addition to their system, so Engineers without Borders USA mandated that a secondary inspection must be completed. This is the assessment that University students completed this May.

Currently, Santa Rosa Senca employs a gravity fed water distribution system. Santa Rosa Senca is a very hilly area, and the pipes will often break from high pressure. There are water outages two to four times a week. Students from Minnesota State Mankato are planning a new system with strategically located break tanks.

This trip was a very busy one for the six student travel team. Team members had to reestablish contact with public officials, like the mayor and municipal leaders. Then, they surveyed the locations and assessed the current pump system. Group members sourced materials at local stores, and finally proposed the plan to the community. Now, the community of Santa Rosa Senca will work to acquire land and easement to build the break tanks on so they can enter an implementation stage with electrical switching.

Jordan ZumBerge, a junior studying Mechanical Engineering, and the travel team’s Health and Safety Officer, says “I am in EWB to help people without the advantages that I have had in life. By helping these people, I help myself in myriad ways, and make the world a little brighter. The outcomes EWB has are proof that everyone can be better off when the world works together, and I’m part of that.”

Team members had a wealth of cultural experiences, staying with a family in Santa Rosa Senca and visiting a local school.

Travel Team

Members: Jordan ZumBerge, Sam Stoffels, Yoseph Ukbazghi, Michael Seffren, Colin Terry, and Sam Krebs

For more information about Engineers without Borders, see:

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