Five Young Women Responsible for $1 million in Rotary Projects
Posted on Jan 12, 2016
Over the past six or seven years Bill Davis has enjoyed the privilege of working with five extraordinary young women who have been responsible for creating TWENTY Rotary water, sanitation, education and health projects around the world with a value of $1,009,000. These projects took place in El Salvador, Bolivia, Uganda, Kenya, Brazil, Afghanistan, Botswana, Peru and Ghana. In addition six scholarships were funded for studies towards Master’s Degrees in Nepal, Brazil, Chile, Austria, Yale University and Scotland.
The five women and where they are now:
Dr. Sara Beck – worked for NASA and was the co-founder of the Central Houston Chapter of Engineers Without Borders (EWB-USA) when we first met. Aerospace Engineering degree, University of Colorado, Master’s Georgia Tech and most recently a PhD from Colorado. Currently conducting water reuse research at the Asian Institute of Technology in Bangkok on a Fulbright Fellowship.
Dr. Isis Mejias Carpio – a volunteer with EWB when we met. Chemical Engineering Degree from University of Houston and joint PhD from Universities of Sao Paulo and Houston on a Rotary Global Scholarship. At the request of Rotary Isis led a team of six to Uganda to identify and help launch a $300,000 water and sanitation project. She appeared on two panels at the Rotary Convention in Sao Paulo and was one of two panelists on a Rotary Webinar for Global Grant Scholars "3 Ways to maximize your Global Grant Scholarship" on October 22nd. Currently with Jacobs Engineering in Houston.
Nicole Heydari - first met when she was seeking funding to attend The Diplomatic Academy in Vienna, the world’s oldest school offering a Master’s Degree in International Studies. Undergrad in International Politics at Georgetown University – currently with the Department of Commerce in Washington where she has completed assignments in Afghanistan and Istanbul and will leave for India in December. She recently passed her physical exam with the FBI and is awaiting security clearance to join the FBI. Currently living with a family in Brazil on a Portuguese language immersion program.
Ali Mondragon - met on a United flight from London to Houston. BSc in Nursing from Oregon Health and Science University and Master’s in International Management from Portland State University - currently working as a Clinical Consultant for Philips HealthCare in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Anja Nikolova – met through Rotary Past District Governor Murat Celik in Istanbul. Undergrad BSc (Hons) Biological Sciences, The University of Pavia, Italy (cum laude). Currently studying on scholarships from Rotary and Yale towards a Master’s Degree of Environmental Management at the Yale University School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. Anja Nikolova spoke at the Foundation Seminar on October 17 and served as a member of the delegation of her homeland, the Republic of Macedonia, to the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris, France (November 30-Dec 11, 2015).
Thank you to all five women for making a huge positive change in the world and thank you to the Rotary Clubs and Districts in nine countries around the world that contributed funds to these projects and a special thank you to the thousands of Rotarians who contributed to The Rotary Foundation and thus enabling the significant matching funds for the projects.