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Sustainability Challenges & the Opportunities for Global Engagement: Linking Caribbean secondary school classrooms and Engineering Departments at US Universities

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Conference

2014 ASEE International Forum

Location

Indianapolis, Indiana

Publication Date

June 14, 2014

Start Date

June 14, 2014

End Date

June 14, 2014

Conference Session

Track 3 - Session 2

Tagged Topic

Student Development

Page Count

14

Page Numbers

20.37.1 - 20.37.14

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/17200

Download Count

73

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Paper Authors

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Maya A Trotz University of South Florida

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Dr. Trotz is an Associate Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of South Florida. She works at the nexus of geochemistry/water quality and global/community sustainability and education. Her interests are interdisciplinary, transdisciplinary, applied and forge non
traditional university partnerships with local and international entities.

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Joniqua Howard University of Texas Arlington

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Ken Darrie Thomas Auburn University, Biosystems Engineering & The Honors College

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Ken D. Thomas, Ph.D. is the Honors Lecturer in Biosystems Engineering of both The Honors College and Department of Biosystems Engineering at Auburn University, Auburn, AL. He received both his BSc Chemical & Process Engineering and MSc Environmental Engineering from the University of the West Indies, St. Augustine, Trinidad and Ph.D. Civil Engineering (Environmental & Water Resources Engineering) from the University of South Florida, Tampa, FL. His current research interests are in sustainability science, sustainable development and sustainable development engineering, especially in a West Indian context, and engineering education.

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Helen Muga University of Mount Union

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Dr. Muga is an assistant professor of Civil Engineering at the University of Mount Union. She teaches undergraduate courses, primarily for civil and mechanical engineering students. She is the lead professor in establishing and building the mandatory international engineering field experience for both civil and mechanical engineering students in the Department of Engineering. Her primary research interests are in water and wastewater treatment and design, sustainability, alternative energy, international development work, and engineering education.

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Jeanese Christine Badenock University of the West Indies, Cave Hill

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Jeanese Badenock received her BSc in Chemistry and Mathematics from the University of the West Indies (UWI), Cave Hill Barbados, graduating in 1996 with First Class Honours as the Valedictorian of her class. After teaching Mathematics at a local high school in Barbados for two years, she attended Dartmouth College, New Hampshire, USA, as a GAANN Fellow under a Department of Education training grant, for her PhD. Working in the group of indole chemist, Prof Gordon Gribble, her research focused on heterocyclic chemistry with special interest in radical indole chemistry and the synthesis of indole alkaloids. She received extensive teacher training at Dartmouth and was awarded the John H. Wolfenden Teaching Prize at the end of the three year mandatory teaching period. After her graduation from Dartmouth College in 2003, she returned to Barbados and was appointed to her current post as Lecturer in Synthetic Organic Chemistry at the Cave Hill Campus in 2004, where she continues to research and publish in the field of indole chemistry. At the UWI Cave Hill, Dr. Badenock has served as the Chair of the Safety Committee for the Department of Biological and Chemical Sciences, a member of the UWI Scientific Team (Environmental Monitoring) and currently functions as the Deputy Dean of the Faculty of Science and Technology (Research and Outreach). She is also a member of the Barbados National Ozone Steering Committee, a former consultant to the United Nations Environment Programme Regional Office of Latin America and the Caribbean (UNEP ROLAC) dealing with Ozone depleting substances, the founding manager of the Caribbean Ozone Depleting Substances (ODS) Solvent Support Facility and a member of the governing council of the Caribbean Science Foundation.

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Sheena A Francis University of Technology, Jamaica 235 Old Hope Rd Kgn 6. Jamaica

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Abstract

Sustainability Challenges & the Opportunities for Global Engagement: Linking Caribbean secondary school classrooms and Engineering Departments at US Universities Sustainability is recognized as critical for the framing of engineering research andeducation with unique opportunities for engineering student training through non--traditionaluniversity partnerships, including international ones. With limited natural resources, highvulnerability to catastrophic events, and isolated by sea, Caribbean islands have been pushing forsustainable development and have championed adaptation as the main mechanism to deal withclimate change. Actual demonstration projects or widespread educational initiatives needed tosolve issues like water scarcity are few and only a very small work force has training in ScienceTechnology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). This paper discusses a secondary schoolstudent challenge that was developed in the Caribbean to address these issues with particularattention paid to Belize and the types of linkages that evolved with US based engineeringstudents and the ways in which students in the Caribbean and the US were exposed to a globalenvironment. The Sagicor Visionaries Challenge (sagicorvisionaries.org), conceived, implemented &sponsored by the Caribbean Science Foundation (CSF), the Caribbean Examinations Council(CXC), and Sagicor in partnership with Ministries of Education in twelve different Caribbeancountries, aims to promote sustainable Caribbean communities through innovation in science,technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). For 2013 it asked secondary school studentsin the Caribbean to identify a challenge facing their school and or community, propose asustainable and innovative solution, and show how that solution uses STEM? Teacher andstudent sensitization workshops were organized in each country. Teachers supervised the studentprojects with support from mentors who were either local or virtual. Mentors includedprofessionals and faculty and students from institutions like the University of the West Indies,MIT, Georgia Tech, UC Irvine, Auburn University, Mount Union College, Dartmouth College,the University of Toronto, & the University of South Florida. One hundred and seventy-five(175) projects entered the competition, representing 900 students ranging in age from 11 to 19.Secondary schools in the Caribbean would be equivalent to a combination of US middle andhigh schools. Twenty four projects entered the challenge from Belize, two of which were formallyengaged with student classes from two different US universities. A teacher and 5 students from aprivate secondary school in Caye Caulker, a Belizean island, were matched with a mentor at aUS University. That mentor required the twenty students in his senior level GeospatialTechnologies for Systems Engineering class work on the Belize request to design a compostingsystem based on material, financial, and local environmental constraints. Teams of two to threeuniversity students worked with the teacher and students from Belize and presented theirfindings via SKYPE and as a written report. While being mentored by a local Belizean engineeron a stormwater management project for their school in Belize City, connections were made to aProfessor of Civil Engineering at a US university who focused her International EngineeringField Experience course on their project. In May 2013 fifteen students from her class visitedBelize to survey the site, teaching survey methods to the secondary school students as well. InMay 2014 another group will visit to continue working on the project which involves thecreation of a detention pond and an ecological park for outdoor laboratory experiments.

Trotz, M. A., & Howard, J., & Thomas, K. D., & Muga, H., & Badenock, J. C., & Francis, S. A. (2014, June), Sustainability Challenges & the Opportunities for Global Engagement: Linking Caribbean secondary school classrooms and Engineering Departments at US Universities Paper presented at 2014 ASEE International Forum, Indianapolis, Indiana. https://peer.asee.org/17200

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