Engineers Community Development Club

The mission of the ECD Club at Washington & Lee is to combine the efforts of students of all majors and interests in a collaborative effort with the ECD Chapter at Virginia Military Institute in order to enhance the living conditions of developing areas worldwide. Through this effort, students will learn about poverty stricken areas, combining their efforts in a creative way to work as a team to design and implement sustainable engineering solutions to improve the basic standard of living for these communities in the developing world.

Contact: Matt Lubas '18



The mission of the ECD Club at Washington & Lee is to combine the efforts of not only engineering students, but of all majors and interests in order to enhance the living conditions of developing communities locally and worldwide. As an Engineering World Health (EWH) chapter, the ECD club will promote biomedical engineering skills for the developing world. Students will learn about poverty stricken areas and utilize creative and thought-out solutions as a team, focusing on the fields of health, water, sanitation, energy, transportation, telecommunication, agriculture or any other field where engineering can promote the basic standard of living of communities locally and in the developing world. 

The ECD club is focused on providing interested students the opportunity to apply their diverse academic backgrounds in a real-life situation for the benefit of those lacking basic human needs, such as drinking water and implement solutions to develop their community. EWH is a dynamic global organization serving engineering students, healthcare professionals, communities around the world and, most importantly, patients in need. EWH allows students to get involved through summer programs, participate in equipment design contests, promote Biomedical education, and share compiled information resource libraries. 

Students in the club will design and implement sustainable engineering, biological, anthropological and business projects to transform communities into healthier, more productive areas. A portion of the project will be completed on campus. On campus duties include, but are not limited to; engineering design, potential economical, medical and environmental impact studies, training sessions, local outreach, fundraisers, teambuilding events, and researching ways to increase a community's income to not only aid them in the present, but in the future as well. This club creates the opportunity to work on campus, but also promote member travel abroad for global projects. There is potential for students from all majors to study the people and their communities to find ways to improve communities through health, water, sanitation, or energy projects. Our goal, as a group, is to create sustainable ways for communities to meet their basic human needs, while each member involved gains enriched global perspectives through the innovative professional education opportunities that the EWH organization and other partnerships provide. The requirement for membership is an interest in helping others and a dedication to making a lasting difference in the developing world. 


The two co-presidents of the ECD club are to manage and organize projects and partnerships globally and/or locally, lead training sessions, and inform the ECD club and W&L community about events. The co-presidents will work together on larger projects while also dividing the responsibilities of trips and events. Next, there is to be a Treasurer that is in charge of fundraising and the finances pertaining to club activities. This individual is to be trustworthy, great at finance and is to be from W&L. There is a Secretary to maintain the website and keep track of club attendance and activities. Finally, there will be two first-year leaders to promote activities on campus and in the local community to new students to the club.  First-year leaders are those shown to be engaged and participating at club events. All leadership positions are to be filled by W&L students. 


To be elected to a position with the organization, members must be nominated by fellow members. Following nomination, there will be an anonymous vote. All votes are to be tallied by the club adviser. Elections will be held every spring term, in May, to allow new officers to start preparing over the summer for their duties. First-year leaders will follow the same voting process in mid-late fall term. 

The creation of this club at W&L extends the opportunity for students to become the leaders of change in their respective fields. The knowledge acquired first-hand by working with an interdisciplinary group of peers on a project is an experience that provides knowledge not found in any classroom. Club members will be faced with real world problems; solving them requires taking into account community interests and constraints brought upon by what the community is able to maintain. The creative effort that will be expected of all club members employs problem-solving skills that begin here on campus but do not end until the construction/implementation is complete at a site. Collaboration with the keydets and faculty at VMI serves as ways to engage in other projects for community development. EWH is a nationally recognized organization that students may stay involved with into their professional lives. These projects not only make a better today, but a better tomorrow.