Engineers Without Borders - USA is a volunteer based non-profit organization committed to partnering with developing communities to help meet their basics needs. Engineers Without Borders at UC Irvine is a unique multidisciplinary chapter committed to empowering these communities through leadership, sustainable engineering, public health and various other disciplines.
EWB-USA supports community-driven development programs worldwide by collaborating with local partners to design and implement sustainable engineering projects, while creating transformative experiences and responsible leaders. EWB-USA has chosen the delivery of smaller scale infrastructure projects within an overall community program framework as its program delivery model. At its core, the EWB-USA model is rooted in practical engineering solutions. However, in order to be successful, program designers must consider a wide range of inputs from the socio-cultural dimensions of the community to local project ownership and other requirements for long-term project viability. EWB-USA programs are full partnerships with a host community and one or more local non-governmental organizations (NGOs). EWB-USA members train local community members and local NGOs to successfully monitor and maintain the projects. It is these partnerships which form the basis of a long-term relationship in order to assure the basic infrastructure needs of the community are met and will remain sustainable long after direct chapter involvement ends. From its founding in September 2009, EWB-USA at UC Irvine believed that engineering alone, though extremely important, is only one of the necessary components needed in helping provide communities with lasting solutions. We therefore work to develop multidisciplinary teams of students with interests and expertise in engineering, public health, education, and business among other majors. We strive to empower not only communities abroad, but our student members, providing opportunities for them to develop their professional, communication, and leadership skills.
Since its incorporation in 2002, EWB-USA has grown from approximately eight engineering students and a civil engineering professor to an organization of over 12,000 students, faculty and professionals. Today, EWB-USA's membership continues to grow, limited only by the organization's infrastructure and ability to ensure the quality and sustainability of the community programs.