In this paper, we share our experiences and lessons learned from Project Haiti 2012, a project to design and install a water purification system serving 20,000 people per day in the largest tent city in Haiti. Project Haiti 2012 was the third and largest system we have built for Haitians and represents a huge success for all participants and stakeholders. This paper discusses the unique experiential learning opportunity involved in the design and delivery of the water purifier in a foreign developing country. Multiple positive educational, social, and economic outcomes were achieved including students applying knowledge gained from coursework towards a greater cause, faculty gaining experience in leading an overseas student trip, engaging Haitians to be less dependent on foreign aid, and relieving water crisis in Haiti. We hope that this paper inspires others to pursue similar experiential learning experiences and develop a repeatable engineering education model for international community improvement projects.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/marc_compere/3/