Tuesday, December 30, 2008


As I cannot forget my birthday, I will never forget 2008. This year was mysterious to me, a lot of things happened as fast as I could not imagine. Although most of them were successfully achieved, some were horrifying … terribly perceived … interpreted… they were like the decaying side of a fruit in composting pit.
The idiom says “Chances knocks but once”. The valuable issue is to know how to make them fruitful. I took my opportunity, stepped out the ambiguity, and find my way to the United States of America, not us a tourist or a clandestine person, but like an Massachusetts Institute of Technology graduate student … in the swimming pool of technology, worldwide smartest people, scientists, … the university that most of the students dream about … the best of the best … Hard to get in and out … as Shania Twain, the singer, said in her song … from this moment … this time I am not interpreting it like a lover … but like someone who is saying that life has begun… it is challenging to be in MIT, but it is enjoyable. When you are in this university, you forget about days and nights, because all seem to be the working days, then there is no way that you can be able to differentiate days from nights … working most of the 24 hours and sleeping less … it is really cool … anywhere … let us do some chronology, just going through what happened in 2008.

January 2008:

MIT fellowship award from the department of Civil and Environmental Engineering 50% of the total funds I needed to attend MIT graduate program in civil and environmental engineering was guaranteed
For the second time, I enjoyed to work with MIT student, Kelly, who was on research in Rwanda; her study was related to rainwater harvesting

February 2008:

The government of Rwanda confirmed the fellowship. This decision provided me with the total confidence of securing funds that were remaining to fulfill MIT fees requirements
I presented water accessibility project in front of DFGFI Board meeting member, who then after visited my field activities
Received a confirmation letter that I was going to be among the presenters in a 5th Scientific Conference on Environmental Health organized at East African Level

March 2008:

I had a special birthday. During the birthday party, I received special three gifs, but the most attractive of these was the red rose flowers. Most of my friends were concerned about who may have brought them, but I have always kept this as a secret. Only because I could not be able to respond to them. I will ever forget how the same time was too uncertainly; something important was being taken off my hands. On the same day I saw that the sunshine of my days was going far away. If you have been reading poems, I am sure you will get the meaning of the aforementioned sentences.
April 2008:

I found my way to the 5th scientific conference that was held in Kampala, Uganda. I gave a presentation on water and sanitation in rural Areas. It was amazing to be connected to this people.
At the end of April, I had a call… guess what? I was awarded MIT Legatum Center Fellowship; this was my first award at worldwide level. I was selected among a lot of applicants with different expertise, but my innovation ideas had a good outstanding and made me to be among the 12 first born of the Center. Now I am sharpening my entrepreneurship knowledge. The major dream is to have a company that will help the developing world to address water accessibility related issues
May 2008:

I received the most important document from the government of Rwanda which was the letter confirming my scholarship funds
My Sister, Claudine, got married. She had a lovely wedding party, and this was also a big day for her, because she found the love of her heart, that she waited six years. During these six years, his boyfriend was studying abroad; she used to act like a web master, all time in cyber café charting with him, sending messages, and pictures. I think she is a witness of the role of internet in enhancing Love between eloigned people - for the six years - she might have learned a lot about it than anybody else.
I received my I-20 document, this time, I knew that I was about to leave

June 2008:

I received an American student visa. This was the fastest document among all the paper work I had to go through in order to come in USA
I stepped on Logan Airport; I was in USA, Boston. My dreams were coming true. I was attending a MIT
I also recall that somebody may have been hurt, because light was covered by the darkness. I strongly apologize for that, but sometimes things begin shine, and end black. That is what happened to the three special gifs received on my birthday
July 2008:
I visited MIT, and did registration. What a wonderful university! I was impressed more
I discovered a lot about America culture, I learned a lot in New Hampshire, where I was living
I visited New York City. I saw the city before in movies, and this time it was alive
More interesting, I received an important telephone call, and I will ever forget it, but I cannot tell what message it carried. That day I saw the moon.

August 2008:

I started living in my apartment, MIT, but I was disappointed because the fact that it had a messy kitchen, it was disorganized. Since then, I have done my best to improve things and make it cleaner and nicer.
For the first time, I went on white water rifting trip organized by Civil and Environmental Engineering Department
We also had a lot of orientation talks, which helped us to know more about MIT and its services

September 2008

I started my classes in MIT and Harvard University; I was being challenged by the new education system.
I had a Dinner and meeting with the President of Rwanda, who was in MIT for the Campton Lecture. He is very encouraging for us, Rwandese students, who had a chance to attend these most desired schools in the world, and even other universities abroad.

October 2008

MIT Legatum Center was publically launched. As I am among MIT fellows, I attended that event, and we, fellows, were among the special guest of the day. The movie showing our business ideas were broadcasted for the first time in front of the audience that included even some of the recent Nobel Prize winners in economics, the fathers of economic theories
I experienced my first Halloween day in the United States of America; it was really interesting to see how my friends changed with their costumes

November 2008

The busiest month of the year, we had a lot of work in classes. I remember that I slept a little during this month, because much time was spent in books
I enjoyed also my first thanks giving holiday. I enjoyed the turkey and other special food of the day

December 2008

Again at the end of the year, the milestone of time measurement, we will be dancing, charting that we are a step ahead. We will all add one year one our age. When I was born I found it to be so, but interestingly I always question the time consideration. I think the death of someone is his chronometer, once it shows up, you time is over. You will be moved from the real to the history. People will start to say that they knew you – past- Let us just do our best to help others, to leave the world a better place as Michel Jackson sang.
During this December, I enjoyed Christmas parties, and received some of the results of my classes where I did my best. I got 2 A and a B, which is good for my first semester in MIT, a totally learning different system compared in what I have been in.
Oh it was a long year, isn’t it? But I tried my best, and things seem to be working out well for me. May the Almighty keeps shining his light on my way, and stay on my side. I still have a long way to go, I am happy that I still have my both parents, and siblings. My childhood was not so easy, and the time ahead may be more complicated than I could imagine, because sometime things can change as quick as we aren’t able to know how they happened like nights cooling down in deserts after a long day of sunshine.
Wishing you a prosperous New Year 2009

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas !

Today is Christmas and I have got my gifts. Have you got yours? Comeover if you did not like it, we can exchange our gifts. Waiting to hear from you soon!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Flurries … Snow… Snowstorm … End of My Fist Term in MIT …

Some of my friends …from the left to the right ... Pakistan, American, Italian, Trinidadian, Rwandese...
December 18, 2008 was my last exam of the first semester – MIT Fall Term 2008-. I felt exhausted. It has been a long time throughout the term seating in Meng room (study room for Masters graduate students in Civil and Environmental Engineering at MIT). My colleagues were sometimes upset about me because I don’t like to hang out … it is not my style … My work was the most important to me, and I had to put in more efforts… finding my way in the best University in world could not be that much easier…for somebody from a totally different education system … developing world… where a little of the students’ needs are fulfilled. I think if there may be a somebody, or even a thing that could know me much better in MIT … will be the Meng room!!!????
In addition, during this first term, I also had a great opportunity to attend a class at Harvard University. This class is entitled “Design for Water Resources Management”. The Professor of this class has been Harvard since 1960’s after graduating from the same university, he become a professor. He is a well knowledgeable guy ever… smart… I am sure that the World Bank, if it could be contacted, could tell more than I do, me, who have been with him only for some months. Peter P. Rogers, Gordon McKay Professor of Environmental Engineering and Professor of city and Regional Planning at Harvard University, is the man I am talking about.
What such a wonderful time! Attending a class with the most competitive students!? Everybody is very focused, need outstanding, all students have the same fillings … be the best of the best … That is the internal drive. It is really amazing … I am having a great time ever … I could not imagine that these days could ever happen in my life… it have been so busy, but worthwhile. Furthermore, enjoying my class is what whoever is attend it could do. It is like a “UN Commission”!!?? People from all over the world … in the same class… beside what you learn from the Professor, you also learn additions from the diversity of your colleagues… French, Australia, Island, Italy, Brazil, India, America, Chine, Thailand, Rwanda, Trinidad, Guatemala … Now you can imagine how many languages are spoken in my class ???!!! I am luck of being bilingual … speaker of French and English… soon I will also be able to speak Spanish … my next favorite language …
I really have to many good stories to tell, but It is not easy to get all of them to the same page today … may be slowly by slowly … I will try to build my story-nest … like a bird, then you will be able to hear more about how I managed my first semester…
Oh my God! I was going to forget the weird story …American’s who are reading this may not find it weird … I am really sorry, there is no way that I can find it normal … How should I start this … It was yesterday night December 18, 2008 when I had a colleague ,Dave , saying … “today there is a snowstorm at midnight” He turned to me and said : “you better go home earlier” … and he was like … otherwise it will be funny … I went home earlier … and waited the morning time to see what really happened and why was he telling me that I should go home sometimes before … Guess what I saw when I looked through my window … oh … normal situation… I said cool… then I have to get ready and go in my lovely room “Meng room”. When I got there, I received a telephone call. It was my friend Dave, telling me goodbye … He was getting ready to join his family for Christmas in Tucson, Arizona. I rushed to his place to say.. a safe journey … we and other friends from my class went out for lunch together … the forecast predicted that the snowstorm that I worried about last night was to start at 2:00 PM … Dave missed his flight, because Logan Airport delayed flights for 6 hours due to the crazy snowstorm … it is really awful… I rushed back in my room … Then the snowstorm started … white little droplets … flurries stated at 1:30 … at 2:00 pm … it was snowing and it will be so up to 8:00 PM… crazy!! all the place turned in white … I felt bad seeing this … I feel like I can go and clean the white appearance, and keep the place as it was before. I am excited to go outside in the morning and feel the damn snow … my colleagues said I will love it, but I feel like I will hate it … let see what happens tomorrow … I may like or hate it …who knows??!!! See the pictures, they will help to understand how the situation was during the snowstorm … See you tomorrow …
You, my friends, who sometimes take your time to read my blog … you are amazing … if you feel like you have something to tell me … just feel free to email me at njepie2001@gmail.com … looking forward to hear from you soon ! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year 2009 …

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

MIT ... Busy place ..... Very busy in Course 1

How can we tell???? Even birthdays are celebrated in our studying Hall commonly named "Meng room"!!!!!?????? .... You should may be consider to apply for MIT and live the busy, but interesting challenging time ....

LifeEngine Clean Water Project

LifeEngine Clean Water Project
Testing Water Filtration Technology in Bisate Village