This weekend, AISES chapter students at Cornell University hosted the Region 6 Regional Conference, bringing in students from all over Northeast US and Eastern Canada despite the snowy weather. The Conference theme was SUSTAINABILITY IN OUR SOCIETY. Events were held in the Africana Center and the Akwe:kon Native American residential hall on campus.
The Lake Erie Professional Chapter is the only Professional Chapter currently representing Region 6. Joseph Connolly, LEPC president, and Kayla DeVault both represented the chapter this past weekend at the Regional Conference.
Saturday was by far the busiest day. Breakfast in Africana led into an opening speech by Dr. A.D. Cropper (AISES 2014 Professional of the Year), followed by a number of Ignite sessions including one, called Modern Heroes: What are YOU doing for the sustainability of our cultures? by Kayla DeVault. Immediately after lunch, 4 corporate/student presentations were led on various topics relating to sustainability. Kayla also represented LEPC during one of these sessions, leading a 50-minute presentation and discussion related to her Ignite presentation that covered sustainable communities, projects for sustainable development of indigenous cultures around the world, and the efforts LEPC is currently making to launch a “Native Engineers Without Borders” program – and the responses were incredibly positive!
The afternoon saw a friendly basketball match in the school gym followed by a long-anticipated, delicious traditional dinner, catered by the culinary students of Cornell Catering. After we were full with bean/corn/squash stew, chestnut bread, and berry cobbler, LEPC’s Joe Connolly (AISES 2014 Technical Excellence Award) served as the closing speaker, showing us videos of rockets, telling us about his journey to and with NASA, and reinforcing the need to strengthen ourselves and our Native communities. Saturday evening then ended in the Akwe:kon residential hall, where the Native American Students at Cornell hosted a number of games with the attendees.
Next up, Leadership Summit in Santa Ana Pueblo!