Sustainability and Technical Communications in Global Health Projects

jamesI never thought joining Carnegie Mellon’s Global Water Brigades organization would change my life. When I went to the first meeting, they told us we would be building water systems for people in Central America who didn’t have clean water. When spring break came, we departed Pittsburgh by plane to Honduras.

I didn’t realize that I would see others in living in conditions that I would never have to endure – that little girls there couldn’t go to school because they had to spend hours every day lugging heavy jugs of water to their homes, or that the water they were carrying was infected with parasites and fecal matter. I was sitting on the plane, ear buds in, oblivious to it all. After pick-axing and digging trenches that would eventually fit pipelines for the water system, I developed a deep interest in the field of public health.

I’ve always wanted to be a doctor. I loved medicine growing up – my mom often found me sitting in my room watching open-heart surgeries on TV instead of cartoons! I also had a strong interest in reading and writing. Among my favorite books are “Mountains Beyond Mountains” and “Tuesdays with Morrie” because they highlight the meaning of true compassion. These books made me want to serve others in debilitating medical situations and in underdeveloped countries.

I want to be a doctor and I want to be a writer, so I decided to pursue both by aspiring to be a doctor and writing books pertaining to the field of public health. With this project, I hope to better understand the public health field and how technical communications plays a role in sustainability.

Learn more about my project.


About emilystimmel

Emily fell in love with the written word as a teenager, when she published zines and wrote for her school paper. Today, she is a freelance writer with a decade and a half of experience in non-profit communications. She enjoys cooking, reading, crafting and exploring Pittsburgh with her husband and two sons.