Our team has now had one month to regroup, reflect, and relax back into our American lives. The intense experience that was our project in Mongolia has now come to a close, and we are thankful for its impact on our lives. Now we have a few thousand pictures to sift through and memories to laugh about. Thanks to all who helped with our success!
The Argylin Garam Bridge Project
The Engineers and Scientists Abroad of South Dakota School of Mines and Technology is making the final preparations for our travel to Chile! We are so excited to lend a helping hand to the Vacations for Orphans site to improve their way of life. There have been a few big changes over the last few weeks, however, so we have to be ready for new surprises.
Two weeks ago, the orphanage was broken into. Some solar panels, propane tanks, linens, and kitchenware was stolen. This is such unfortunate news, and it may set back the date the orphanage can take children. So now, the engineers-to-be will also be looking for ways to secure new devices to buildings in a more robust way. This is a huge sign that security needs to be enforced in the buildings before more work and technology is put into the facilities.
Another big change is that one of our team members is having some heath issues and can no longer travel with us. We are sad that Katelyn can’t come, but we wish her the best while we are away. We have to take care of ourselves in order to help others.
Tomorrow, we’ll support the graduating students of SDSM&T and see them walk across the stage. Then on Monday, we’ll take our luggage, brainpower, and helping hands to South America! Wish us well!
Thank you IBM for making this trip possible! Photos and summaries to come.
Cat, Trevor, Riley, Christian, and Chris
Hello once again, from what may be our last blog from the states. With less than a week left until we hop on a plane bound to Mongolia, we have encountered the challenge of packing. All the gear and equipment we have gathered over the last few months now has to be packed into a limited number of bags without exceeding the airline weight limit. So far all the bags are weighing out perfectly, even with all the heavy tools and hardware. As we pack we have been making frequent trips to buy last minute tools and personal items that we might need for the project. Overall the crew is staying strong through finals week as the anticipation grows to finally take off on our adventure. A successful finals week has left us full of excitement for our departure!
This spring break gave 10 students the opportunity to complete projects in Bogota, Colombia and Lima, Peru! Here are a couple videos with some footage from each.
Hello! Since our last post we’ve continued to prepare ourselves for this life-changing adventure. We’ve held several meetings to discuss what we need to take and what we already have so we can work toward getting the necessary tools and materials. We also sent in our passports to get our Chinese visas! The next step is to fully analyze the bridge and determine things such as the amount of concrete we need, logistics of getting everything there to the site, the tools we need to bring, and how to best repair the portion of the bridge that is sagging. We still have a lot of planning and preparations, but we have made good progress and intend to keep pushing forward! Another portion of our trip is attending an international concrete conference. Two papers will be submitted, on concrete research and this bridge reconstruction. We are excited and busy, with less than two months until departure.
Until next time,
ESA Team Mongolia