The Sunflower State Professionals and the Wichita State student chapter are teaming up once again- this time to co-present at this year’s KWEA & KsAWWA Joint Annual Conference 2013! Our speakers will be EWB-USA SUN vice president, Ben Rufenacht, EWB-USA SUN past president, Jodi Gentry, and EWB-USA WSU president, Josh Countryman. Presentation is on August 27th at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Wichita. We’ll see you there!
Interested in local EWB-USA leadership opportunities? The Sunflower State Professionals are preparing for chapter elections this Fall and are live-hosting the new EWB-USA New Officer Orienation Webinar. Think you might be interested in a position on our team? Then please join us on 30 July, meet the existing EWB-USA SUN leadership team, and ask any questions you may have!
Can’t make the meeting on 30 July? Well, you’re in luck because EWB-USA is hosting this orientation online on Monday, 29 July too! Click here to register for either event: EWB-USA Webinar Registration.
Brent Metz is the EWB-USA Sunflower State Professionals Cultural Liason and an essential team member in our current Guatemala-based clean-water project. Learn more about our only tenured member in this quick profile:
Name: Brent Metz
Education: MA Anthropology U. of Michigan, PhD Anthropology SUNY-Albany
Title & Employer: Associate Professor of Anthropology, University of Kansas
Number of Years Involved: 3
Books Written: 2009 1st editor, Cameron L. McNeil and Kerry M. Hull co-editors. The Ch’orti’ Maya Area, Past and Present. University Press of Florida. (25 contributors from 6 disciplines, 20 chapters).
2006 Ch’orti’-Maya Survival in Eastern Guatemala: Indigeneity in Transition. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press. (346 pp.)
2002 with Julián López, Primero Dios: Etnografía y cambio social entre los mayas ch’orti’s del oriente de Guatemala [God Willing: Ethnography and Social Change among the Ch’orti’ Maya of Eastern Guatemala]. Guatemala: FLACSO, Plumsock, Oxfam, COMACH. & Horizont 3000. (279 pp.)
Why did you get involved with EWB-USA Sunflower State Professionals? An opportunity to help out the Ch’orti’ Maya in particular, to whom I’m indebted for their hospitality and my career, and the chance to work with some pretty special engineers. (I was once an engineering major myself).
If time travel were possible what year would you visit and why? Just think of the advantages I could have now if I could skip ahead to the year 2100 for a bit. But I’d like an emergency button to immediately return me to now in case it’s too brutal.
What food obsession do you have that you wish you didn’t have? Cheese, cheese, cheese. Wonderful, belly-expanding, cholesterol-laden, expensive, stinky-feet-smelling cheeeeeeeese. The sharper the better. Must be the rodent in me. (I regret alcohol, too, but only the day after. My memory malfunctions as soon as another beer is placed in front of me).
Do you have a secret talent? I can rock out with the best singing in the shower. Seating is limited, however. I can also spin a mean frisbee, but this has yet to bring the fame and fortune I deserve, either.
If your iPod could only contain music from one artist for the rest of your life, who would it be? Excruciating…. Based on the sheer number of sing-able shower songs, I suppose I’d have to go with The Beatles. Then again, the most exhilarating thing about iPods are all the NEW songs that one just downloaded …
Today, Engineers Without Borders-USA: Sunflower State Professionals’ Emily Robbins and Brent Metz are giving a presentation at the Kiwanis Club of Lawrence, KS. The talk will focus on our current clean water project in Guatemala. Check out the flyer below!
Congrats to Karen Lewis, EWB-USA SUN team member, for her recent University of Kansas research award to explore community organization and participatory methods for educating the Ch’orti’ Maya as it relates to our water improvement project in eastern Guatemala!
Emily Robbins is the current President of Engineers Without Borders - Sunflower State Professionals. In asking the questions for our recurring Member Profile series — where we delve not only into the professional accomplishments and motivations of our talented group of volunteers, but also their personalities — we learned some interesting things about Emily.
You’ll have to read on to find out about Emily’s secret talent, among other things:
Name: Emily Robbins
Education/Degree/Institution: Environmental Engineering at the University of Kansas (Go Jayhawks!)
Title & Employer: Environmental Consultant at Trinity Consultants
Number of Years Involved: 4 years
Why did you get involved with EWB-USA Sunflower Professionals? Fame and fortune. Just kidding! I wanted to use some of the skills I gained in school to help others. It seemed unfair that not all people have basic necessities.
If you time travel were possible, what year would you visit and why? I don’t think my answer has changed since I was about five years old. I would travel back in time to see dinosaurs! I don’t know what year that would be..200 million years ago or something like that …
What food obsession do you have that you wish you didn’t have? I feel guilty about eating them, but I love Sonic Cheeseburgers
Do you have a secret talent? Greased pig catching - I once won a belt buckle. Look it up, it’s a real thing.