MechChem Africa

To kick off the year’s proceedings, the Gauteng members’ group opened on a high note by showcasing the exciting organisation, Engineers Without Borders SA (EWB-SA), and giving members a chance to find out more about this organisation. 


David Ming, director of EWB-SA, started off the evening held at Worley Parsons, Melrose Arch, by explaining to members exactly what EWB-SA is and what it aims to address in South African society.

Ming told the attendees that the EWB-SA group aims to facilitate the transfer of engineering skill sets and convert this into far-reaching benefits for local communities using a project-based approach to implement, install and educate those areas in need of these critical skills.

Hundreds of projects have been started around the country, each with their own set of unique challenges to understand and solve. The group started in 2008 at the University of Cape Town and there are now nine student chapters, mainly based at universities and technikons, and a member base of over 1 500, established in the space of eight years.

While getting projects off the ground and running, a key focus of the group is the educational value and the approach to unlocking this. Human-centred design and rapid prototyping are commonly used methods for unlocking potential of members and their teams in order to achieve project objectives at a fast pace. EWB-SA student members get exposure to valuable project management sessions by being a part of the group, which equips them with the tools to get ahead.

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