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18 donations

This fundraiser ended on 05/10/10

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Please help support my 3-month unpaid internship in South Africa, where I'll be working (for free!) to develop, implement, and install solar panel, wind turbine, solar thermal, and affordable housing projects in a developing country.

Ahh, life as a grad student. Everyday you learn something new and amazing about the world around you, inspiring stories that fill you with hope for the future, and which living strategies help one to survive on Top Ramen, oatmeal, and the anxiety of having to pay back student loans. All the while trying to project an air of class and confidence, as you try do dream up a sophisticated-sounding explanation for choosing the cheapest glass of wine while schmoozing with potential future employers. "Mmm, say what you will about aged French reds, the smokey, full-bodied flavor, combined with the economically enticing 17.5% alcohol by volume make Night Train Express more savory than any Bordeaux."

That being said, it also empowers one to make a difference in the world on a large scale, assuming you can eat and sustain your body. In South Africa this summer, I'm hoping to make a difference in a developing country where I have an (unpaid) internship helping to assess carbon footprints, build sustainable energy infrastructure, and affordable housing for South Africans. I'm also hoping to build my skillset so that I can do more of this in the future, be better at doing it, and build a good strong network of people who want to help, and have the ability to do something about it.  It really is an amazing opportunity, well worth the $1500 program fee and about the same for the flight, but as a full time student this is a sizeable amount, which is why I'm asking for your help.

But wait! We can also have fun with this! Anyone who donates $40 or more will get a photo of themselves somewhere in South Africa! The World Cup will be in full swing! Get a picture of yourself (either as a cutout or doctored-in) outside the stadium, or looting in the streets with the rest of the hooligans! Perhaps you want to see your face next to a Great White Shark! How about lounging around on solar panels, or being chewed on by a baboon! Send me your photo and I'll do my best to make it look as janky and unbeleivable as possible. You can choose a location (depending on what I actually do there) or leave it up to randomness and get a fun surprise!  Be sure to check out some cool examples on the "photos" tab!

I know times are tough right now and many of you simply don't have anything to spare and that's OK, I understand and thank you for simply reading this and supporting my efforts with friendship and hopefully a smile. For those who can spare something, even a few bucks, I'll be deeply grateful, and financially indebted to you next time I'm gainfully employed so feel free to get creative when reminding me that I owe you dinner/a drink/Christmas presents for your kids/a floor to sleep on while you attend the World Cup (not sure if the policies allow me to actually pull off this last one).

Thanks so much everyone, I look forward to inundating you with pictures of my trip on facebook, hearing from some people I haven't talked to in a while, and paying you back in hard manual labor!


Justin Bean

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