Exhibition Celebrates Success of Course in Helping Honduras Village

By Purnell T. Cropper | March 30, 2010

Exhibition of the Honduras Project: Celebrating a Job Well Done is on display April 11 to 24 in the Student Gallery Art Gallery in Landman Library.

A reception will be held Sunday, April 18, from 3 to 5 p.m. in the Gallery.

Last May, 20 Arcadia University students and alumni—led by Arcadia faculty members Alan Powell and Connie Coleman and assisted by two community leaders, Tim Philpot and Luray Gross—traveled to the northern region of Honduras to work on a water purification project organized by International Aid of Michigan. Their experience was part of an interdisciplinary course (ID381/581) called Honduras Experience. Both graduate and undergraduate students participated in the course, including graduate students in Arcadia’s Physician Assistant, Physical Therapy and Public Health programs.

“This exhibition celebrates the accomplishments of the Project and focuses on the ongoing needs of the Honduran people,” says Powell, Associate Professor of Communications. Corporate partners include International Aid, Rotary Club International, Discovery Service Projects, Rolling Hills Methodist Church, Trinity Buckingham Episcopal Church, and St. Philips New Hope Episcopal Church.

Working in the small mountain village of La Zona, the Arcadia group built 24 latrines and septic systems in a week’s time. The village had no electricity and only recently had developed a single-source, spring-fed water system with the help of International Rotary Club.

The Arcadia group assembled hygiene kits for the 68 families in the village. Graduate students from Arcadia’s Public Health and Physician Assistant programs restocked and relabeled the village pharmacy with first aid kits and non-prescription drugs and antibiotics. The group also donated school supplies for the two village schools, providing every student with paper, pencils and playground supplies for the coming year.

The very accomplished Honduran workers for International Aid guided the Arcadia group through construction methods and cultural practices. Kurt Reppart was the Project Coordinator for International Aid.