International Opportunities for USF Students Majoring in Civil & Environmental Engineering
There are many opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students to integrate an international education and/or research experience with their undergraduate or graduate education. Several of our experiences are linked to sustainability issues that impact the developing world.
Examination of the “grand challenges” for engineering developed by the U.S. National Academy of Engineers suggests the complex technological and global nature of the individual and combined challenges. To meet these grand challenges, students must become more globally aware of social, economic, environmental, and technological issues and realize that engineering solutions must be appropriate for a geographical, environmental, cultural, political, and economic setting. The International experiences listed below help to prepare our students for meeting local, regional, and global challenges.
International Capstone Design (ICD)
International Capstone Design is open to undergraduate and graduate students. It is designed to emulate work of a design/build firm in industry while providing a meaningful class experience that combines field construction with an engineering design project to benefit people of the developing world. The experience provides students a platform to consider economic and health factors, social and societal impact, application of appropriate technology, constructability and sustainability, safety, reliability, aesthetics, ethics, and environmental limitations of the developing world while applying engineering skills to a design that results in a more sustainable Earth. International Capstone Design teams U.S. students, faculty, and practitioners with Bolivian students, faculty, and practitioners. Cochabamba is a distinct location to study governance issues associated with water because the city is famous for protests known as the "Cochabamba Water Wars" that occurred in 2000.
Read article on ICD in enVision Magazine
Peace Corps Master’s International Program
The USF Peace Corps Master’s International program in Civil and Environmental Engineering is open to MS and PhD students. It allows students to combine their graduate degree with service and research while serving in the Peace Corps as an engineer. The program has a strong focus on sustainability and humanitarian engineering and students are allowed to explore and innovate at the interface of engineering design and technology with people, society, and health. In addition to traditional engineering coursework, students are required to take classes in sustainable development engineering, global health assessment, and research methods in applied anthropology. The program differs from other Master’s International Engineering Programs. 1) knowledge creation is critical to our work, we require completion of a research thesis; 2) we require 9 credits of coursework in global health, applied anthropology, and sustainable development engineering; 3) students can obtain a Graduate Certificate in Water, Health, Sustainability; 4) students can take an International Capstone Design experience set in Bolivia; and, 5) we have many faculty with international and sustainability experience that works its way into the classroom and research. Come experience and help us implement this vision of a better world.
Read article on Peace Corps program in enVision Magazine
International Research Experience on Sustainability at the UNESCO-IHE Laboratory in Delf, Netherlands
This research program is open to undergraduate and graduate students. The 8-week summer research program is supported by a grant from the National Science Foundation. The program allows students to research and develop innovation technologies in water and wastewater to meet the Millennium Development Goals. It builds on USF’s continuing relationship with the world’s leading water authorities at UNESCO-IHE Water Laboratory in Delf, Netherlands.
International Research Experience in Sustainability located in Bolivia
This summer research program is open to undergraduate and graduate students and is supported by a grant from the National Science Foundation. This program is focused on sustainable water management that takes place at a system interconnection of engineering, anthropology, global perspective, and a dynamic world. The integrated community of U.S. student researchers includes PhD and undergraduate students from engineering and anthropology. They partner with an engineer from a community-based nongovernmental organization and faculty and students studying ecological engineering from the Universidad Tecnológica Boliviana (La Paz) and civil engineering from Universidad Privada del Valle (Cochabamba). Graduate students integrate their research with participation in an education program like the new 16-credit Graduate Certificate in Water, Health, and Sustainability. Undergraduates will return to campus to continue research via the USF Honors College or other undergraduate research initiatives. Undergraduates can also participate the following year in a 6-credit International Capstone Design course, 3 of the credits taking place back in Bolivia, with an established partnership we have with the Universidad Privada del Valle (Cochabamba).
USF Education Abroad (Brochure)
Offers a variety of study abroad opportunities for students and faculty in over 25 countries, these include: semester exchanges, dual degree programs, summer and short term programs, international internships, and service learning. Programs range from one week to one year and award academic credit. Education Abroad facilitates the incoming and outgoing exchange process and works closely with our international partner universities to develop new academic programming and exchanges. The Education Abroad Office provides extensive planning assistance for both students and faculty program leaders, including pre-departure orientation sessions. The staff members have extensive experience in study abroad and are able to offer seasoned, insightful advising and information to anyone considering or planning a study abroad experience.