Vista • Fall 2010 • Volume 15 • Number 2
Global Engagement in Action
Clean water, sustainable agriculture, and entrepreneurship opportunities for women in AIDS-ravaged villages—these are just some of the life-or-death concerns that brought Mount Holyoke President Lynn Pasquerella to Kenya’s Lake District in August. For the third year in a row, she traveled to Africa with students and faculty from all of the institutions where she’s previously taught or worked as an administrator: Brown University, the University of Rhode Island, and the University of Hartford. To her delight, Mount Holyoke joined the team this summer.
Pasquerella has partnered with the Africa Center for Engineering Social Solutions (ACESS), an organization founded by native Kenyan Clarice Odhiambo, to engage students and faculty at American colleges in designing simple engineering solutions for problems facing Kenyans. “The people of Africa have the solutions; they just don’t have the resources,” Pasquerella said.
Thanks to a grant from Newman’s Own, Hilda Barasa ’12, an urban education and economics major from Kenya, spent June and July helping Odhiambo organize the infrastructure for the team’s fieldwork. Yiting Wang ’11, an MHC environmental studies major and international relations minor from China, was in Nairobi for a summer internship and arranged to spend a week assisting the ACESS team.
“I’m hoping that more MHC students can join us next year—faculty, too,” said Pasquerella. “This project is so perfectly aligned with the College’s mission of using liberal learning for purposeful engagement in the world. Through ACESS, our students directly partner with women in Kenya. Together, there’s so much we can accomplish.”
Mount Holyoke College • Vista
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