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University of Iowa News Release

May 17, 2006

Student Engineering Group Wins Honorable Mention In National Competition

The University of Iowa student organization, Engineers for a Sustainable World (ESW), recently received an Honorable Mention award in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) 2nd Annual People, Prosperity, and the Planet (P3 Awards) competition.

Craig Just, UI associate research scientist in the College of Engineering Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering and ESW advisor, accepted the award with the UI student-led team May 10 at the National Academy of Sciences in Washington, D.C.

Student team members include:

--Marcelo Mena (project leader) of Villa Alemana, Chile, doctoral candidate in civil and environmental engineering.

 --Elliott Campbell of Santa Cruz, Calif., doctoral candidate in civil and environmental engineering.

 --Loreto Stambuk of Punta Arenas, Chile, master's degree from the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences in urban and regional planning in 2004.

 --Policarpio Soberanis of Belize City, Belize, graduate student in mechanical and industrial engineering.

 --Ivy Donaldson of Kingston, Jamaica, graduate student in mechanical and industrial engineering.

The UI ESW chapter was one of 41 student teams nationwide receiving $10,000 EPA Phase I grants to design a sustainability promoting concept or product,

then travel to Washington, D.C. to present the design in the P3 competition. The UI design -- to adapt an Iowa Department of Natural Resources pollution prevention internship program to make it an exchange program with students in Mexico -- is designed to help residents of Xicotepec, Mexico, prevent pollution in ways that aid the environment and the economy. In addition to accepting its P3 award, the UI team met with Sen. Charles Grassley and the Chilean Ambassador to the United States about expanding the team's pollution prevention program to other Latin American countries.

"The long-term goal is to work with global companies with operations in Iowa and Central and South America to make the award-winning Iowa Department of Natural Resources Pollution Prevention intern program international in scope with direct benefits to Iowans," Just says.

Earlier this year, the UI ESW chapter was honored when the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) invited Just to represent the group at a March 21-24 international conference at UNESCO world headquarters in Paris. The meeting focused on establishing an international ESW organization to enable interested groups worldwide to participate more closely with U.S.-based ESW chapters on sustainable development projects and education.

UI ESW will host the national ESW Conference, "Envisioning Sustainability: A New Generation of Thinking for the Next Generation of Living," Sept. 27-30 at the Iowa Memorial Union on the UI campus.

Engineers for a Sustainable World is a nonprofit organization with a network of more than 3,000 professionals and students working to reduce poverty and improve global sustainability. The UI chapter, comprised of students and professionals, works with Rotary International District 6000, which provides local contacts in foreign lands as well as logistical and financial support. Further information about ESW can be found at:

The EPA initiated the P3 Award ( in 2004 to respond to the challenges of the developed and developing world in moving toward sustainability. The P3 national competition enables college students to research, develop and design scientific, technical and policy solutions to sustainability challenges.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500.

MEDIA CONTACT: Gary Galluzzo, 319-384-0009,