The Impact of HELVETAS Swiss Intercooperation on Civil Engineering Education in Nepal

Cable Sag Setting for suspended bridge at Panga, Kritipur, Kathmandu.

In the final year of our Bachelor of Civil Engineering program in Nepal, we were fortunate to receive the support of HELVETAS Swiss Intercooperation. This organization, dedicated to the development and implementation of projects that change the lives of people in developing countries, provided us with the necessary resources to complete our thesis project.

Our project focused on the design of two different trail bridges in Nepal: a suspended bridge at Panga, Kritipur, and a suspension bridge at Madaiyatapanpur, Sarlahi. These bridges are not just structures; they are lifelines that connect communities, facilitate trade, and provide access to essential services like healthcare and education.

HELVETAS Swiss Intercooperation provided us with technical books, training, and the opportunity to visit the actual sites of these bridges. This hands-on experience was invaluable. It allowed us to understand the practical challenges that come with bridge construction in the diverse geographical and climatic conditions of Nepal.

The bridges at Panga and Madaiyatapanpur are particularly important due to their locations. Panga, a historical town in the Kathmandu Valley, is a bustling hub of activity. The bridge here improves local transportation and supports the town’s economic activities. On the other hand, Madaiyatapanpur in Sarlahi, a district in the Terai plains, is a rural area where the bridge significantly enhances connectivity for the local farming communities.

I would like to express my deepest gratitude to Er. Lal Jha from Bardibas for facilitating everything for the Sarlahi site, and to Mr. Netra Khanal for the Panga site. Their assistance and guidance were invaluable to our project. We are also immensely grateful to our supervisor, Sushil Kumar Bhandari, for providing us with all the necessary resources and for his continuous support throughout our project.

Additionally, I would like to thank my teammates for their collaboration and hard work. This project would not have been possible without their dedication and commitment. We are proud of what we have achieved together and look forward to applying the knowledge and skills we have gained to future projects.

In conclusion, the support from HELVETAS Swiss Intercooperation was more than just financial. It was an opportunity for us to apply our theoretical knowledge in a real-world context, understand the socio-economic impact of our work, and contribute to the development of our country. We are grateful for this experience, which has shaped us as engineers and as individuals committed to the progress of Nepal.

The completed bridge, standing as a testament to successful construction (Photo courtesy of Panga, Kirtipur).

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