MOSAIC NOLA:The Gentilly Project

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Post-Katrina: Mobilization for Community Revival

In the Thayer School of Engineering (where I teach), there's a course calledn ENGS "Engines" 21 which introduces undergraduates to engineering . In the course, students are presented with a general theme like Survival or Energy, and their task is to work in small groups to identify a particular target group, assess their needs within the theme, and develop a solution to those needs.

This MOSAIC project is a similar kind of thing for Thayer's Masters of Engineering Management (M.E.M.) students. My students have engineering degrees from Dartmouth and a variety of other schools. In additon, many have completed their first year of the MEM program and have therefore completed courses in marketing, optimization, operations, and finance. Some of my students have also completed courses at the Tuck School of Business, which I can see directly outside my office window.

The theme of this project is Mobilization for Community Revival. I've provided some initial guidelines and structure: this project will be done in the spirit of open-source software development (e.g., the Linux operating system) and the "open-source" political efforts that have emerged in recent years (e.g., the grassroots presidential campaign of Howard Dean).

Any motivated person can particpate - including YOU. Our task is to provide a structure to help you participate, drawing upon as large a pool of talent, social networks, and other resources as we can tap into. All so that we can make a difference for those who have lost so much since Hurricane Katrina. Today is Day 6 of the project. Our second class of the quarter is today.


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