The Engineering Smiles team, part of the ASU student program EPICS (Engineering Projects in Community Service), is in the final stages of designing a fully-outfitted mobile dental unit to be built next school year, destined for service in Central and South America. Their community partner, IMAHelps, sends volunteer dentists on missions to developing countries, who often spend 12 hours a day helping patients that are in desperate need of dental care.
“Currently, Nicaraguan patients are receiving procedures performed in hallways and small closets with very limited tools for these life-changing operations. For some, the dental issues are so severe and disfiguring that potential patients are excluded from their communities. But it doesn’t have to be this way,” describes Sara Mantlik, Project Manager of the Engineering Smiles Team, comprised of five, dedicated engineering and architectural students.
Over the summer, as they finalize design plans, they’re seeking professional expertise from both mentors from the engineering/construction/design sectors and the medical/dental arenas. Various medical supplies and equipment are also necessary to create a clean, reliable, and effective space for IMAHelps dentists to perform their critical work. To arrange to donate time or supplies, contact Sara Mantlik, the student project manager, at email@example.com.
Sara further explains the educational component: “As well as providing medical care, this endeavor has been teaching us critical engineering skills, and will also be used as a teaching resource for UNICA (Universidad Católica) students in Managua, Nicaragua.” To learn more, visit http://asufoundation.org/engineeringsmiles.