A Valparaiso University student project to bring fresh water to a remote African village will be highlighted at the Clinton Global Initiative University conference Saturday, March 31, in Washington, D.C.

“We are excited to see our hard work in Africa shared with this international audience,” said Ivan Martenynko, a senior engineering major and president of Valpo’s Engineers Without Borders (EWB) Chapter who has helped lead the project since its inception. “We are not only working to bring water to the people in the village of Masaera, but also teaching them sustainability lessons to last a lifetime.”

The Clinton Global Initiative University (CGIU), launched by Bill Clinton in 2007, is a conference that inspires the next generation of world leaders to take action on global challenges. At this meeting, nearly 1,200 students, national youth leaders, topic experts, and celebrities discuss solutions to pressing global issues in CGIU’s five focus areas: education, environment and climate change, peace and human rights, poverty alleviation, and public health.

At CGIU 2010, Valpo’s EWB student team made a commitment to restore the irrigation water supply to the 2,500 villagers of Masaera, Tanzania. Building on their work that began in 2009, the team has improved the control of water flow from Mount Kilimanjaro and decreased erosion in the area. In addition, they are working on other clean water and health-related water issues.

“The Africa project exemplifies a resounding commitment by Valpo’s students and faculty to serve people in need around the globe,” said Valparaiso University President Mark A. Heckler. “Our University is humbled and honored, knowing that this project will be viewed by leaders from around the world at the Clinton Global Initiative University.”

“The CGIU recognizes that a small group of motivated students can have a significant impact on the issues facing the global community,” said Michael Hagenberger, professor of engineering and leader of the student team. “Hopefully our work can inspire other groups to make similar commitments to communities around the globe.”

The presentation of the Valpo Engineers Without Borders project can be seen online at new.livestream.com/cgi/cgiu2012. For additional information and detail about the Valpo project, visit valpo.edu/student/ewb.

About Engineers Without Borders

Valparaiso University is a service-based organization consisting of students from all majors committed to partnering with international, national and local undeveloped communities to effect transformational change through common action. EWB-VU seeks to aid these communities by using technical and engineering skills to design and implement sustainable projects that incorporate environmental and cultural awareness and that aim to broaden the global perspective of our local community.

About Valparaiso University

Valparaiso University is a comprehensive independent Lutheran university with more than 4,000 students on its campus located in Northwest Indiana, an hour from Chicago. Valpo is a community of purpose-driven, service-minded and ethical individuals who embrace the pursuit of truth with freedom, humility and compassion. Valpo has been identified as one of the top master’s-level institutions in the Midwest by U.S. News & World Report magazine for the past 22 years. Valparaiso University offers 110 undergraduate academic programs through the colleges of Arts and Sciences, Business Administration, Engineering and Nursing. Valpo also has a distinguished honors college, a School of Law and more than 40 degree and certificate programs in its Graduate School and Continuing Education Division. Valpo has been recognized for its commitment to outstanding teaching, preparing thoughtful leaders with strong cross-cultural skills and global awareness, and dedication to serving others.

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