Hello and Welcome!
My name is Sadie Heald and I am a senior pre-medical Biology major in the School of Arts and Sciences. Most importantly, I am your fearless…flight attendant? Tour guide? Cruise director?? – I wish! I guess photojournalist is the simplest definition, but it certainly does not encompass all that goes with maintaining this blog. No matter what title you want to give me, I will be manning this beast over the next couple months. I hope you enjoy it!
I want to start out by saying thank you to EWB, Design for a Global Change and SGA for allowing all of the students that are traveling this wonderful opportunity to make a difference in the world. I sort of stumbled across this program a few months ago while looking for a study aboard program during winterterm. I started going to meetings about the up coming trip in January, and the more I learned, the more I thought “I’m in!” We had weekly workshops for four weeks. We listened to speakers on various topics including an overview of projects in India so far, hydrology, supporting women’s efforts for self-empowerment, the issue of poverty and how to adjust to and experience a new culture. The students and teachers began developing or furthering their own projects or group projects in preparation for January. As a photography minor at the Hartford Art School, I thought my best contribution would be to document the trip with photos. I will be taking photographs and collecting photos from other students and teachers and maintaining a blog about our efforts before, during and after the trip.
And now I finally have something to blog about! Blogging is considered the pinnacle of society according to most of my generation so after becoming a scholar student-athlete, the fundraising chair of my sorority and a member of the A and S honor society, I can finally say I have accomplished something important with my life today. Woohoo!
Thank you to all the students and faculty who came this past Thursday to the showcase we hosted of the past and ongoing projects in India and Kenya. There were displays demonstrating the solar-powered filtration system and the rainwater collection system already implemented in India which I am very excited to see in action. There was a project on a proposed personal water filtration system for the next trip for Kenya involving a clay pot fused with everyday organic materials such as coffee grounds and saw dust. Of course, there were a couple displays about our upcoming trip including one on the greywater filtration system, the sustainability of our efforts and the sociology project studying what effect bringing clean water to Abheypur has had on its people. There was also a display about the ongoing project by the Hartford Art School through Design for a Global Change to use graphic design with different medias to promote healthier living and the betterment of a society. Best of all, there was delicious traditional Indian cuisine served! Yum! And almost as good as the food – I tend to think with my stomach – is that we raised 240 dollars!!
I have to say that as a non-engineering, graphic design or sociology student, I have not really felt that involved in the project until this past Thursday . . . I got my vaccines, ouch! Now, I really feel like I’m going. We are scheduled to leave in a month from today and that feels very soon and too far away at the same time. In all seriousness, now that I’m posting my maiden blog post, I really do feel involved in the project. While still state-side, I will be working on the first half of my project which involves making a collection of photographs from the University of Hartford and the surrounding area (Hartford, Bloomfield, and West Hartford). This is so we can show our friends in India where we come from and expose them to a bit of American life and culture. I will be documenting all aspects of society; the very wealthy and the exceedingly impoverished, the mundane and the extravagant and everything in between. If you have any ideas or photographs for this half of my project, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I will try to share at least some of these photos with our readers here too before we leave.
Well I guess that is all from me for now. Time to start studying for finals – wish me luck! Introductions from the entire India January 2010 team coming soon!
Read about the January 2009 trip to Abheypur, India:
Learn more about the Design for a Global Change program:
Explore the EWB page on the U of H CETA website: