• Categories
  • Archives

American PhDs Get Green Building Program in Brazil

The world’s rapidly increasing population is straining natural resources, necessitating a sustainable approach to development. Starting this fall, University of Pittsburgh students will be able to travel to the University at Campinas (Unicamp) in São Paulo, Brazil.

There they will conduct research in green construction and sustainable water use technology under a new Pitt program funded by a US$ 3.2 million Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship (IGERT) grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF).


The program, spearheaded by the Mascaro Sustainability Initiative (MSI) in Pitt’s School of Engineering and a joint effort of the school and the Center for Latin American Studies within Pitt’s University Center for International Studies, will allow engineering doctoral students to journey to São Paulo for eight-month international research rotations at Unicamp, one of the top engineering schools in South America.


“Sustainability is a global issue, and an appropriate technology for the U.S. may not be appropriate for another region,” noted principal investigator Eric Beckman, who is Bayer Professor of Chemical Engineering at Pitt and codirector of the MSI.


“At Unicamp, students will gain an international perspective on technology and design, with an eye to learning about novel approaches to sustainability developed by our Brazilian colleagues.”


“We believe that by learning to adapt to the Brazilian culture and to study, research, and live in Brazil for an extended period, the IGERT fellows will then have the confidence and ability to adjust to other cultures throughout the world,” Beckman added.


“This will make the graduating fellows highly desirable to government, nongovernmental organizations, and industry.”


In an effort to increase the number of Hispanic students in the field of engineering, the program also includes partnerships with the University of Texas at El Paso and the University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez.


Students from those institutions will be able to complete the Master of Science degree at their home institutions, transitioning into the IGERT program during their final semester and pursuing the Ph.D. degree at Pitt.


The program, which is the first IGERT grant led by Pitt, involves faculty from all seven engineering departments at the University.


Coprincipal investigators are associate professors of industrial engineering Kim LaScola Needy and Mary Besterfield-Sacre; Robert Ries, assistant professor of civil engineering and director of Pitt’s Green Construction Program; and Laura Schaefer, assistant professor of mechanical engineering.


The curriculum emphasizes team-based design that crosses departmental lines. Unlike most graduate engineering programs, it will include a capstone sustainable design course, so that engineers from different specialties can learn a common framework for sustainable design.


Created in 2003 through the generous sponsorship of John C. Mascaro (CEE ’66, ’80 ) of Mascaro Construction Co. LP, the Heinz Endowments, the Dominion Foundation, and the estate of George M. Bevier ( PetE ’13 ), the MSI supports research and educational programs that focus on greening the built environment and the sustainable use of water.


University of Pittsburgh – www.pitt.edu

Tags:

  • Show Comments (0)

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

comment *

  • name *

  • email *

  • website *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Ads

You May Also Like

Brazil Economy’s Poor Showing Doesn’t Hurt Lula’s Mood or Popularity

Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva forecasted Friday the economy would expand 4% ...

Brazil Discovers Its Faces and Is Making Money Out of It

Cave paintings are on the ceramics produced by artisans from the city of Serra ...

Street vendors, a common sight of a lively informal economy

GDP – Brazil’s Gross Disappointing Product

GDP growth is a bit of an obsession in Brazil. You can’t attend a ...

Lloyds Bank

Brits Turn Their Backs on Brazil

When Lloyds Bank decided to sell off its Brazilian operations in 2003 it was ...

Mugged in Brazil

Bit by bit I was losing the struggle. He was taller and bigger than ...

Brazil’s Coffee Growers Want More Federal Help

Coffee prices improved 21.41% this year in relation to 2004, but it was still ...

Argentina Isn’t Here

Brazilians are inclined to work problems out so that no one gets hurt too ...

Foot and Mouth Disease Is Back in Brazil

Brazilian authorities confirmed Thursday, April 20, a new outbreak of the highly contagious foot ...