October 2, 2013

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The Ghana Project: Real-World Engineering

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Geosyntec is supporting engineering students at the University of North Florida (UNF) in their efforts to improve the quality of life at the Tamale Children's Home in Tamale, Ghana. Known as The Ghana Project, UNF established the bi-annual service learning trip for engineering and other students in 2001. The mission of The Ghana Project is to improve the quality of life of those living at the Tamale Children's Home through sustainable engineering solutions. This year's efforts include nursing, political science, and engineering projects.

The Ghana Project is a complex endeavor that forces the student design team to develop creative solutions to multi-disciplinary problems. "This is an opportunity for UNF engineering students to learn hands-on by applying their knowledge and thinking to develop innovative methods to solve critical issues," said Kwasi Badu-Tweneboah, PhD, PE, Geosyntec associate. "At the same time, they will be imprinting a positive sense of goodwill within themselves and even more so the children at the home." Kwasi serves on the Engineering Advisory Committee for UNF. He earned his undergraduate degree in civil engineering from the University of Science & Technology in Kumasi, Ghana.

UNF students will perform several projects at the Tamale Children's Home, including repairing water tank foundations, completing and improving the existing rainwater harvesting system, constructing a fence, installing a garbage containment site, and purchasing clay pot filters to improve water purity. Due to contaminated drinking water and other hazardous conditions currently confronting the home, the students' efforts are timely. "In addition to improving life quality, this visit offers a life-changing experience and exposure to new perspectives and cultures, both professionally and personally," said Nandra Weeks, PE, Geosyntec principal.