Some things, you just can’t learn in the classroom.
For instance: When installing solar panels in Haiti, you’ll need to work around falling mangoes.
Watch the video here! http://www.osu.edu/features/2011/haitisolar
Ohio State engineering students recently spent a week bringing solar energy to Croix-des-Bouquets, a rural area a few miles away from Port-au-Prince. The village is home to many former city dwellers displaced by the 2010 earthquake.
In bringing lights and fans to the community, the students overcame several real-world obstacles, working around delayed deliveries and using translators to navigate language boundaries.
Trace Searles said Haiti was a perfect place to apply the lessons Ohio State professors have taught him: “The sun’s there all the time, right near the equator. It’s perfect for solar power.”
The students’ work in Haiti was possible because of the money they raised through Solar Education and Outreach, a student organization founded by Lucas Dixon, a recent grad with an interest in sustainability projects.
“We have so many resources at Ohio State,” says student Ben Aring. “There are so many people who are looking to support the students.”
The group organized the trip in collaboration with Prof. Terri Teal Bucci, who founded the Haiti Empowerment Project in 2005 to concentrate on educational efforts, on future energy projects in Haiti. (Watch a video feature about Bucci’s efforts to set up schools in Croix-des-Bouquets. http://osu.edu/features/2010/haiti)
“We can take the lessons learned in the last five years and really bring in some human and intellectual capacity to help our Haitian colleagues in all fields,” she says.