Winter Break Education Abroad Trip: Humanitarian Engineering and Culture in Guyana
Over Winter Break 2019, December 13 through December 22, 2019, the College of Engineering and the Office of Diversity and Inclusion collaborated to offer the Engineering Service-Learning in Guyana program, traveling.
There was a 3-credit hour autumn course leading up to the trip. This course prepared students for a humanitarian engineering project trip to Georgetown, Guyana to work on solar education projects in the surrounding communities. In addition to learning about Guyanese history, culture, and current events, students discussed the energy challenges, needs, and possible clean energy solutions for developing communities surrounding Georgetown. This experience was open to all majors, and by participating, students learned about solar panel systems and the required considerations for installations in Guyana. While in Guyana, students participated in STEM education outreach with local students, interacted with local Ameridian and Afro-Guyanese communities, participated in Guyanese cultural activities, tasted traditional Guyanese foods and drinks, toured historical sites in Georgetown, Guyana and networked with government officials at the Ministry of Public Infrastructure (MPI), among many other experiences. Students as well as Resident Directors felt it was an amazing trip full of wonderful, unique experiences that expanded their world-view. Students voiced that they didn't want to leave Guyana.
Attending the trip were 21 Buckeyes: 18 students, mainly engineering students of which six were ODI Scholars; and three Resident Directors: Dr. Kadri Parris and Dr. Adithya Jayakumar, Department of Engineering Education, and Mr. Robert Decatur, Office of Diversity and Inclusion.