RAPID CITY, S.D. (June 20, 2014) – South Dakota School of Mines & Technology chemical engineering seniors Ty Murphy and Roderick McCrae recently returned from a week-long mission trip to Central America. They joined 14 others from Delta Sigma Phi chapters across the U.S. on the trip, which was coordinated by the Association of Fraternal Leadership & Values and the Hearts to Honduras program.
Murphy, of Johnstown, Colo., and McCrae, of Redfield, worked with their travel companions to build a house for a single father in rural Santa Elena, Honduras. After their first full day in Honduras, the group attended a church service where they were individually recognized for their mission.
“At the end of the mass, I was in awe of the fact that every one of the members of the congregation, adults and children alike, made a point to come to at least one of us, shake our hands, and say ‘Vaya con Dios’ – Go with God. It was a very humbling experience that displayed not only how passionate the culture is regarding religion, but also how loving they are to others,” Murphy said.
During their stay, the group also played soccer, zip lined over a 150-foot waterfall, sampled native foods and planted trees to help purify the local water supply. When construction was completed, the house was dedicated before a large group of local residents. The mission group provided the family with furniture, kitchenware and enough food to last several months. All supplies were paid by those attending the trip and the Association of Fraternal Leadership & Values.
“Humbled does not even begin to describe my feelings about my experiences during the journey. I know that the lives of the family who received the home are forever changed, and the same is true of the lives of the men who were fortunate enough to, for one week, be a part of the Honduran culture,” Murphy said.
Founded in 1885, the South Dakota School of Mines & Technology is a science and engineering research university located in Rapid City, S.D., offering bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees. The university enrolls 2,640 students from 45 states and 37 countries, with a student-to-faculty ratio of 14:1. The average starting salary for graduates is $62,400 with a 98 percent placement rate. Find us online at www.sdsmt.edu, on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/sdsmt and on Twitter at https://twitter.com/sdsmt.