Student outcomes of short-term international humanitarian engineering fieldwork

A. R. Nassar, K. Holmes, K. Mehta

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

3 Scopus citations


This study assesses the self-reported outcomes of engagement in a three-week-long, international humanitarian engineering fieldwork course for undergraduate and graduate students. As part of the fieldwork, multi-disciplinary teams of students designed technology-based ventures in low-resource countries, including Kenya, Tanzania, India or Nicaragua. The venture development required students to engage business partners, work closely with the local communities, and conduct formal and informal presentations. Ventures included development of a solar-powered food dryer, biogas digester, affordable greenhouses, inexpensive biomedical devices, knowledge sharing platform for self-employed women, and a networked telemedicine system. Students reflected on their experiences at the conclusion of the fieldwork course. The researchers analyzed 106 students' self-reported outcomes using a mixed-methods approach. Broad categories of outcomes identified by students included teamwork, intercultural competency, professional and personal development. In this paper, we examine the themes emerging from the self-reported outcomes with the goal of better understanding how students process their experiences and the value of such experiences to students from the course and similar community-engaged scholarship experiences. The results presented in the paper can be leveraged to strengthen fieldwork experiences and develop effective strategies for branding the value of entrepreneurship education.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationFIE 2016 - Frontiers in Education 2016
Subtitle of host publicationThe Crossroads of Engineering and Business
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
ISBN (Electronic)9781509017904
StatePublished - Nov 28 2016
Event46th Annual Frontiers in Education Conference, FIE 2016 - Erie, United States
Duration: Oct 12 2016Oct 15 2016

Publication series

NameProceedings - Frontiers in Education Conference, FIE
ISSN (Print)1539-4565


Other46th Annual Frontiers in Education Conference, FIE 2016
Country/TerritoryUnited States

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Software
  • Education
  • Computer Science Applications


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