KLAMATH FALLS, Ore. – Two Oregon Tech students spent the summer painting a mural within Oregon Tech’s Purvine Hall, to highlight the journey that energy takes to get to us, and all the steps taken by our engineers to get it there.
The student artists, Kawthar (pronounced KAO-THAAR) Alfilfel and Eleanor Kenyon, volunteered their time to complete the mural, which displays the many wonders of Electrical Engineering and Renewable Energy (EERE)—programs housed within Purvine Hall on Oregon Tech’s Klamath Falls campus. Sponsored by EERE and the Office of Student Involvement & Belonging, the mural was unveiled on Sept. 25 and lays directly under the skylights that light the upper lobby of the building.
The students say the mural, titled “The Day in the Life of an Engineer,” was created from inspiration they received speaking to EERE faculty and students.
“The EERE faculty wanted us to add elements that represented the Electrical and Renewable Energy Engineering program,” said Eleanor Kenyon, who studies Environmental Science and is originally from Myrtle Point. “This naturally brought us to a landscape-type scene with these elements and a place for all that energy to go: a city!”
Although they are a science student and a health student, the two artists met in an Oregon Tech art class led by Marzena Terry, who brought the mural idea to them.
“Painting has always been my relieving space, especially landscapes,” said Diagnostic Medical Sonography student, Kawthar Alfilfel, who is originally from Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. “I always found an overwhelming power in our nature; the winds, the ocean waves, and the blazing sun are all our free daily doses of strength and positivity given from mama earth.”
Eleanor added, “Although I am a science major, art has always been important to me and I have enjoyed the challenge of combining the two. Working on this mural was a perfect way to blend these two worlds and bring some art to the highly technological fields of electrical and renewable energy engineering.”
The mural focuses on the elements that represent the EERE program, such as solar, wind, hydroelectric, and wave energy. The mural spans more than 30 feet in width and 5 feet in height and took the students more than 100 hours to complete after the original sketch was done on the wall.