New opportunity for students to give back through engineering

Monday 2 December 2019

The College of Engineering and Computer Science is proud to announce that it has secured two significant grants from the Commonwealth Government through the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade New Colombo Plan Mobility program, to support students to travel overseas for study and access short-term learning opportunities in the Indo-Pacific region.

Both grants will go towards unique social impact engineering programs, which were the only successful ANU-led projects to receive multi-year funding from the 2020 round.

The first award will support undergraduate students to travel to Singapore for systems engineering exchange and internships in the region.

ANU program convener Jeremy Smith says it will offer a unique opportunity to explore the international scope of engineering.

“The internship will allow students to experience the application of their engineering to a range of complex development challenges, make people-to-people connections in the Indo-Pacific region, and focus on improving human wellbeing and quality of life,” he said.

The project will establish a new partnership with one of the emerging leaders in the region, the Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD). ANU students will stay on campus, and have the chance to experience Singaporean academic and cultural life.

Following this placement, students undertake a 4-6 week internship with a for-purpose organisation or community group in the Indo-Pacific region. This internship contributes directly to the professional work experience requirement of all undergraduate engineering students at ANU.

“During the internship, students will apply their engineering knowledge and cultural understanding developed during their exchange at SUTD to a range of complex development and aid challenges. This includes clean water, renewable energy, access for people with disabilities, and education development,” said Jeremy.

The second successful Mobility Grant led by the College is a collaboration between ANU, RMIT University, Swinburne University of Technology, and social enterprise Pollinate Energy.

A total of 90 undergraduate engineering students from the three universities will travel to India, to support Pollinate’s development work.

Students will work in teams with a blend of Australian and local Indian students, to conduct research on global sustainable development. They’ll examine the built environment, utilities access and dispersion, average incomes of slum dwellers, product performance, and primary needs in the community.  

Jeremy Smith says this partnership will provide students the opportunity to grow academically, personally and professionally.

“Participants will be immersed in Indian life and culture; including community visits and work alongside Indian staff, micro-enterprises, businesses and community representatives.”

“This collaboration is an opportunity to embed rich cross-cultural learning experiences into humanitarian engineering curricula, and to simultaneously create tangible impact for the communities in which we work,” he said.

Find out more about Humanitarian Engineering opportunities at ANU.  

Updated:  10 August 2021/Responsible Officer:  Dean, CECS/Page Contact:  CECS Marketing