Going Back To Haiti

In case you didn’t know, I’m going back to Haiti and leaving in just over two weeks! I wanted to share with you my support letter and ask that you consider partnering with me or directly with Haiti:


Dear Friends,

Just over a year ago, I had an amazing opportunity to go on a mission trip to Haiti.

It was a chance, I thought, for God to use my talents for His glory. I assumed that as a college-educated engineer still wet behind the ears, I would show Haiti all the amazing things that could be done with a little bit of math, some ingenuity, and elbow grease.

I am humbled to report that I was wrong. Well, at least wrong about what talents God would be using.

Before leaving for Haiti, I was praying with Jon Epps, the director of Convergence (the young adults group at church). I was feeling ambivalent about so many things in life. Jon prayed that “God would rock [my] world,” and He really did…in every sense of the word (we were there during the earthquake).

I can’t fix Haiti. My skills as an engineer focus mostly on sensing, control, and communication; not designing hurricane strength aqua ducts, constructing bridges over raging rivers, or building earthquake resistant homes (because nothing is ever really earthquake proof). I suppose it’s a good thing that I’m not supposed to fix Haiti. Sometimes it takes a little smack from God to remind me of that.

There is something I can do though. I can engage Haitians. I can come alongside them as best I know how and show them God’s love and compassion. I can do the work that God laid out using the tools He has equipped me with, even if they aren’t the tools I thought I would be using.

I can also come back and tell my story, which I’ve had the opportunity to do as a guest writer in The Oredigger (my alma mater’s student newspaper), and in the UPC Times (my church newspaper), in addition to my pictures and posts on my blog. I’ve also had the pleasure of talking in person with many people at work, church, and around town about my experience and the issues facing Haiti.

Now, I have been given another opportunity to spend 10 days serving the Lord in Haiti. In April, I will travel with 11 others as we come alongside UPC ministry partners Bruce and Deb Robinson. We will engage with the Haitians as we work to continue construction of a school as well as take on other tasks Bruce and Deb set out for us.

So I’m humbly asking if you would be my partner in this service through prayer, financial support, or both. I am looking for a group of people to commit to praying for me and my team during this Spring’s experience. As for finances, we are asked to raise $1600 each.

I know that is a lot to ask, so any contribution you could make to this trip would be greatly appreciated, and I promise none of it will go to pay off my school loans. Your gift will be fully tax deductible (your cancelled check serves as a receipt), and any contributions I receive above my individual cost will be applied to team expenses as a whole. Please make any checks payable to UPC (“Haiti: Andrew Ferguson” on the memo line please) and send the enclosed response card1 with your donation by April 5th.

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. (Ephesians 3:20-21 [NIV])

Your Brother in Christ,

Andrew Ferguson

If you’re interested in helping support me, you may also do so online through PayPal:





Download a copy of this letter: Haiti Letter (PDF: 345KB )


  1. only if you received an actual letter….you can use the PayPal link below instead 

Home Away From HomE-Days

This is my first year away from home for E-Days. I celebrated by joining some fellow Mines Alumni at Ivar’s Salmon House on Thursday evening1 for drinks and dinner. I met some great engineers, we talked about what do, teachers we had, exploits we participated in, and beers we drank.

I was sad to not be part of chaos this year, but also glad that I didn’t have two spend every waking hour for two three straight days covering the events (it takes a toll on the body). I think I’ve successfully immortalized myself by getting my photos published yet again in The Oredigger. This puts me at two articles and probably close to two dozen photos published in three issues since I’ve graduated. Not bad for an alum living 1000 miles away.

This year had some nice coverage from Steven Wooldridge of The Oredigger and James Dimagiba (you should really check out James’ photos, they are quite good), among others.

Fireworks on Field
12.0 mm || 8 sec || f/11.0 || ISO200 || NIKON D70
Golden, Colorado, United States


Fireworks for the 2009 display


  1. The official kick off for E-Days 

Designing The Brunton: 2009-2010

Earlier this year, I was asked if I would like to work on designing the front cover of The Brunton. Despite everything I was trying to get accomplished, I took this task on a way get some creative exercise. Working with the Student Activities Office (the department responsible for publishing The Brunton), I was able to come up with a pretty spiffy design:

Brunton: 2009-2010

I was also able to draw on my extensive collection of photos to pick 12 photos for display on the inside:

Inside Pictures_0001_BackgroundInside Pictures_0004_BackgroundInside Pictures_0007_BackgroundInside Pictures_0008_BackgroundInside Pictures_0009_BackgroundInside Pictures_0011_BackgroundInside Pictures_0012_BackgroundInside Pictures_0013_BackgroundInside Pictures_0014_BackgroundInside Pictures_0015_BackgroundInside Pictures_0016_BackgroundInside Pictures_0017_Background

Left to Right, Top to Bottom: Andrew Ferguson ’08 as an Enginerd, Mines Women’s Rugby, an Engineer participates in Engineering Days activies, Eileen Sullivan ’09 bores a hole in a rock during Engineering Days, Audrey Nelson ’07 enjoys a powder day, Lance Atkins ’09 and Nicole Zambon hiking Mt. Democrat, the Mines Marching Band during Homecoming, Ben Keiser ’07 stands in the Orecart during the march to the state capital, Blue Key member Corinne Johnson ’09 gets doused in whitewash while supervising the M-Climb, new LED lights on the M, Paul Johnson ’08 is Marvin the Miner along with Blaster.

It was a pretty fun project and didn’t take too much time. The Student Activities Office was kind enough to give me a lot of creative control, with only a few requirements. I also got a credit and a short biography on the first page of the The Brunton, which I thought was pretty spiffy:

Front cover and calendar photos taken by Andrew Ferguson, 2009 CSM graduate with a Degree in Engineering, Electrical Specialty. Front cover designed using a USGS topographic map of the Golden Quadrangle (7.5 minute series).

Over the course of his five years at Mines, Andrew amassed a wide variety of photos through his work with The Oredigger and personal projects.

After graduating, Andrew returned to the Seattle area to work in the aerospace industry. You can follow him on his blog and see more of his photos, from Mines and around the world, at http://AndrewFerguson.net.

All of the photos used in this year’s Brunton are of Mines students or places related to Mines

Update: I found some of the original designs I was working with. This was after the stage where I picked the initial photo to use on the front:

Version 1
Front-Cover-v1

Version 2
Front-Cover-v2

Version 3
Front-Cover-v3

Version 4
Front-Cover-v4

Version 5
Front-Cover-v5

Version 5b
Front-Cover-v5b

Campus Benefactors: Simon Guggenheim

My latest article for The Oredigger is up. It’s been several years since I wrote a bona fide article for The Oredigger.

My article this week is about Simon Guggenheim, a campus benefactor. One of the oldest buildings on campus is named after him: Guggenheim Hall.

From media.www.oredigger.net:

After becoming a multimillionaire, Guggenheim moved north to Denver in 1892 and married Olga Hirsh on November 24, 1898, at the iconic Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York. To celebrate their marriage, the Guggenheims provided a Thanksgiving dinner to 5,000 poor Manhattan children.

I was also able to get some pretty good photos too, which is the real reason I took the article. I tried a couple of new techniques with balancing the light. First, I adjusted the exposure to just barely clip the highlights (pure white pixels). Then I adjusted the blacks to just barely clip the shadows (pure black pixels). This, in theory, maximizes the contrast ratio of the photo; which is important because photos already have quite a bit less contrast than the human eye does, so we best make use of all of it. Next, I tweaked the fill light to bring out the body of the photo. Some of the photos almost ended up looking sort of HDR-ish I think.

Simon Guggenheim - Color
Nikkor @ 18mm || 1/60 || f/11 || ISO200

Simon Guggenheim
Nikkor @ 18mm || 1/500 || f/3.5 || ISO200

Simon Guggenheim - Color
Nikkor @ 38mm || 1/80 || f/4.2 || ISO200

As always, there are some more pictures over on Flickr: Guggenheim Hall set

Also don’t forget to read the article: Campus Benefactors: Simon Guggenheim

United States Military Upgrades Weapon Reticules

This was in the the Garlic section1 of the February 2nd issue of The Oredigger.

United States Military Upgrades Weapon Reticules

Luther Sloan (AKA Andrew Ferguson)

United States Military officials have announced that new weapons are currently being distributed to military personnel in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The new weapons were designed after several soldiers complained that after playing Halo 2, they thought the reticule on their real assault riffles should also light up red when an enemy combatant was in their sights.

Department of Defense officials agreed and fast tracked the technology to get it in the field as soon as possible. Master Chief Andrew Collins, based out of Fort Lewis, Washington, said, “These weapons are awesome! I can practice my skills on Halo when I’m at home, and then use my newly acquired skills in the field. It totally rocks!”

Department of Defense officials are hopeful that the new reticules will help eliminate so-called “friendly-fire” incidents. Some reports estimate that had Bungie released Halo 2 last year, when they originally planned, up to 2/3 of the deaths since then could have been avoided.

In addition to making combat safer, some officials predict the new assault riffles will help keep the United States Military strong by recruiting current Halo fanatics who want the exhilaration of firing the real weapon. And that’s the way the cookie crumbles.

1 The Garlic section is like The Onion. That is, it’s satire.