Upcoming Bridges

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As summer is quickly approaching, we are busy preparing for many bridges to be built in the coming months in South America and Africa! 11 chapters (from the United States, Canada, and England) will be constructing 9 bridges in two countries: Bolivia and Swaziland. Our Bolivia program remains strong with continual support by our wonderful in-country partner, Engineers In Action. Since the launching of our Swaziland program last year, we have continued working with our partner MicroProjects to take on more bridges that will involve higher numbers of university students and impact communities in other regions of the country. As the 2018 build season kicks off, we encourage you to follow along via individual chapters' social media accounts and this newsletter!

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Chapter Highlights

The University of Toronto chapter had a bridge competition
Facebook:@B2PUofT

 The University of Alberta chapter's travel team got together in March to look at practical field challenges such as cutting and bending rebar and tying the rebar cages together  Facebook: @uab2p

The University of Alberta chapter's travel team got together in March to look at practical field challenges such as cutting and bending rebar and tying the rebar cages together
Facebook:@uab2p

 The Cornell University chapter raised awareness about their Swaziland bridge by handing out cookies  Facebook: @b2pcornelluniversity

The Cornell University chapter raised awareness about their Swaziland bridge by handing out cookies
Facebook:@b2pcornelluniversity

 After 12 hours, 25.6 miles, and 5 mountain peaks, plus an untold number of peanut butter sandwiches, the University of Colorado Boulder chapter completed their Walk a Mile in Their Shoesfundraiser  Facebook and Instagram: @CUB2P

After 12 hours, 25.6 miles, and 5 mountain peaks, plus an untold number of peanut butter sandwiches, the University of Colorado Boulder chapter completed their Walk a Mile in Their Shoesfundraiser
Facebook and Instagram:@CUB2P

 The University of Iowa chapter was out enjoying the nice weather during their surveying workshop  Facebook and Instagram:  @continentalcrossings

The University of Iowa chapter was out enjoying the nice weather during their surveying workshop
Facebook and Instagram: @continentalcrossings

 During the first weekend of March, the University of Notre Dame chapter spent Sunday morning learning and practicing some important technical skills during their anchor pour construction workshop  Facebook: @NDSEED

During the first weekend of March, the University of Notre Dame chapter spent Sunday morning learning and practicing some important technical skills during their anchor pour construction workshop
Facebook:@NDSEED

 The Rutgers University chapter had their second annual dodgeball tournament on Friday, April 27th  Facebook:  @b2p.rutgers  Instagram: @b2pru

The Rutgers University chapter had their second annual dodgeball tournament on Friday, April 27th
Facebook: @b2p.rutgers
Instagram:@b2pru

 The Penn State chapter had a weekend construction seminar and potluck  Facebook: @pennstatebridgestoprosperity  Instagram:  @pennstateb2p

The Penn State chapter had a weekend construction seminar and potluck
Facebook:@pennstatebridgestoprosperity
Instagram: @pennstateb2p

2017 B2P University Conference

 Outstanding turnout at the 2017 B2P University Conference! Photo credit: Emily Reeve

Outstanding turnout at the 2017 B2P University Conference! Photo credit: Emily Reeve

The second annual B2P University Conference was held at the University of Notre Dame in October, with students and ambassadors from 11 universities in attendance. We were so inspired by the collaboration and innovation between teams. As we looked back on the bridge projects completed in the 2016-2017 build year, we were excited to provide the opportunity for reflection of both our successes and our failures, knowing that we could all learn from each other to propel the University Program forward and continue fighting for our shared mission of providing safe access to isolated communities around the world.

This year's conference, co-sponsored by the University of Notre Dame College of Engineering and Kellog Institute for International Studies, focused on operations both on-campus and in the field to prepare teams for all stages of the project, with workshops that explored a variety of technical and project management issues as well as strategies for respectful community engagement. These sessions allowed builders of past bridges to exchange lessons learned and best practices, while hands-on construction workshops allowed students who have not yet built a bridge to experience first-hand how various elements of a B2P bridge are constructed. The conference also provided numerous platforms to showcase each university team's unique strengths to promote discussion among all participants.

 University of Notre Dame 1020 presentation. Photo credit: Maria Krug

University of Notre Dame 1020 presentation. Photo credit: Maria Krug

During the opening session, each team showcased their chapter and the things they do best through 1020 presentations, a fast-paced informational slideshow. These presentations showcased each team's personality and creativity to kick off a conversation about different ways to successfully run a B2P team and project.

Sitting amongst some of the most passionate and driven college students I have ever met sparked a fire inside every member of the NDSEED team, motivating us to continue our work of excellence and reminding us of the reason we do this work, to provide dignified human-centered development to those in need.
— Kaci Heneghan, University of Notre Dame

Read Kaci's story about the 2017 B2P University Conference here.


We wish to thank the many individuals from Notre Dame, Bridges to Prosperity staff, and the University Program Ambassador team who made this conference possible.

 

Award Recipients

Bridge Builder Team of the Year

University of Notre Dame
 

Bridge Builder of the Year

Sam Sweet
University of Colorado Boulder
 

Parsons University Safety Award

University of Colorado Boulder

 

Best Photos

 

Community Engagement

Ryan Gloeckner
Penn State
 

Collaborative Construction

Madison Sankovitz
University of Colorado Boulder
 

Finished Bridges

Osbel Dorvil
Rutgers

Bridge Builder Team of the Year: University of Notre Dame

 The University of Notre Dame team constructing their 2017 footbridge in Las Pencas, Nicaragua.

The University of Notre Dame team constructing their 2017 footbridge in Las Pencas, Nicaragua.

The Bridge Builder Team of the Year award is presented to a university chapter that showed excellent overall performance in all aspects of their project planning and execution, as well as thorough understanding and embodiment of the mission of Bridges to Prosperity. Find out more about the University of Notre Dame chapter here.

Bridge Builder of the Year: Sam Sweet, University of Colorado Boulder

 Sam Sweet, Bridge Builder of the Year. Photo credit: Madison Sankovitz

Sam Sweet, Bridge Builder of the Year. Photo credit: Madison Sankovitz

The Bridge Builder of the Year award recognizes a university student who showed exemplary leadership and served as the driving force behind a high-quality bridge project. The Bridge Builder of the Year is someone who empowered their peers by example and inspired everyone on the job site. As the Project Manager for the Edlangeni, Swaziland footbridge, Sam led the University of Colorado Boulder team in establishing a program in Swaziland and building Bridges to Prosperity's first footbridge there. Despite many setbacks along the way, Sam kept team spirits high and inspired the team and community to finish the huge bridge that spanned 74 meters with 3 tiers on one side and 3.5 tiers on the other!

Parsons University Safety Award: University of Colorado Boulder

 The University of Colorado Boulder was awarded Parsons University Safety Award. Photo credit: Madison Sankovitz

The University of Colorado Boulder was awarded Parsons University Safety Award. Photo credit: Madison Sankovitz

The Parsons University Safety Award goes to the team who best embodied B2P's culture of safety throughout the duration of their project. This award is accompanied by a $1,000 cash prize from Parsons. The University of Colorado Boulder had few incidents and near misses on site and implemented a novel tethering system for fall protection while building 3-tier abutments. They also developed a new fall rescue plan. Find out more about their chapter here.

Best Photo (Community Engagement): Ryan Gloeckner, Penn State

 Morning safety meeting begins each day with a dance-off. Kumusenyi, Rwanda

Morning safety meeting begins each day with a dance-off. Kumusenyi, Rwanda

Best Photo (Collaborative Construction): Madison Sankovitz, University of Colorado Boulder

 Carrying sand and water was a daily task on the bridge site. Edlangeni, Swaziland

Carrying sand and water was a daily task on the bridge site. Edlangeni, Swaziland

Best Photo (Finished Bridges): Osbel Dorvil, Rutgers

 The Palmar Pampa B bridge completed. Bolivia

The Palmar Pampa B bridge completed. Bolivia