Fellows - IAP 2011

The Americas

Portland, Oregon and Cambridge, Massachusetts

Elizabeth Hoffecker Moreno (G, Urban Studies and Planning)
Based in Portland, Oregon, World Pulse Media trains the next generation of female citizen-journalists in developing countries around the world and connects them to a global audience, working to solve pressing problems in their communities and have identified needs for outside expertise in specific areas necessary to move their projects forward. Elizabeth will work with World Pulse and MIT to develop a system for collecting, vetting, and disseminating these service opportunities to MIT students looking for challenging and meaningful development projects to tackle for competitions, PKG Center Fellowships, courses, and similar opportunities.

New Orleans, Louisiana

Stephen Kennedy, (G, Urban Studies and Planning)
Stephen, along with other DUSP students Marcie Parkhurst and Farzana Serang ,will be traveling to New Orleans to work with Broad Community Connections, a non-profit, Main Streets organization established after Hurricane Katrina to bring new life, commerce, and opportunity to the historic Broad Street corridor, working to revitalize main streets as vibrant economic and cultural components for communities. Stephen will focus specifically on the implementation of a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts for iconic neon and LED signage for independent businesses along the corridor.

Marcie Parkhurst (G, Urban Studies and Planning)
Marcie Parkhurst be traveling to New Orleans to work local residents, business owners, and Broad Community Connections (or BCC, a community development organization) on the creation of an economic revitalization plan for a 6-block stretch of the Broad Street commercial corridor. This plan, which will be presented in a public meeting at the end of IAP, will allow community members to express their vision for Broad Street. As such, the plan will also provide BCC with a roadmap to guide future economic development work along the corridor.

Farzana Serang (G, Urban Studies and Planning)
Farzana Serang and two other MIT students, Stephen Kennedy and Marcie Parkhurst, will work together and combine their individual community development, economic development, and design skills to plan for a community-driven revitalization effort for Broad Street, a historically designated Main Street, in New Orleans, Louisiana. To this end, they will work with Broad Communities Connection to gauge community interest and propose plans for revitalization (which includes how to formulate a Small Business Association) to help bring new life, commerce, and opportunity to the historic corridor of Broad Street from Tulane Avenue to Bayou Road.
Farzana is also keeping a blog!

Barranquitas, Puerto Rico

Elijah Hutchinson (G, Urban Studies and Planning)
Elijah will be working to create a worker-owned cooperative with a land owner in Puerto Rico. Components of the project include agricultural trade and low-cost housing development, as well as an education/cultural center and the possibility of hospitality services for economic development purposes. Elijah is working with a landowner and farmer in Puerto Rico and is excited to work with local residents on starting the cooperative

Bogota, Colombia

Ben Hyman (G, Urban Studies and Planning)
Ben is a Master’s candidate in the Department of Urban Studies and Planning, where his focus is international development and economic growth. Ben will be working on a project which seeks to attract foreign and domestic investors to developing countries by bundling local supplier information, input/material prices, and infrastructure quality metrics into a spatial database, custom-tailored to attract projects that generate jobs and stimulate local supplier growth in Bogotá Colombia with the non-profit organization Invest in Bogotá

Guadalajara, Mexico

Héctor Salazar Salame (G, Urban Studies and Planning)
Héctor will collaborate with a leading labor rights organization in Guadalajara, Mexico to systematize and review over 2,000 cases of labor violations in the electronics manufacturing industry. These cases have been documented by the organization over the past decade. Additionally, Héctor will work with the organization to develop a knowledge management tool to help better document and track future violations.


Mbandaka, Democratic Republic of Congo

Ian Gray ( G, Urban Studies and Planning)
Ian will be assisting villagers in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to develop a management scheme to achieve 50% reductions in their deforestation rates. This project will focus on a particular experiment in forest carbon finance where the Woods Hole Research Center is working with the DRC Ministry of Forestry and the Congo Basin Forest Fund to transfer payments to a group of subsistence farmers near the town of Mbandaka in exchange for changes in their farming practices

Tamale, Ghana

Josh Hester (2011, Civil Engineering)
Josh will travel to Tamale, Ghana with a team of Master of Engineering Students from the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering to work at Pure Home Water, a local non-profit manufacturer of ceramic water filters. Josh's project will focus on characterizing the clay being used to make the filters, establishing standards for a marketable product, and evaluating filter performance based on clay composition and firing parameters.

Jonathan Lau (G, Environmental Engineering)
Jonathan will work to improve the availability of sanitation facilities in rural Northern Ghana in collaboration with the local non-profit Pure Home Water (PHW). By piloting several latrine designs on the PHW factory site, he will assess the cost effectiveness of composting latrines, compared with regular pit latrines, as well as market the concept of sanitation to surrounding communities. Secondly, he will conduct community sanitation surveys in the neighboring Taha Village to assess the level of sanitation as well as the important next steps. The goal of the project is to provide Pure Home Water with the necessary information to work effectively in the sanitation sector.
Jonathan is also keeping a blog.

Kampala, Uganda

Campbell Mayer (G, Urban Studies and Planning)
Campbell Mayer, an MCP2 in the International Development Group at DUSP and a Legatum Fellow, will be traveling to Kampala, Uganda over IAP to collect data and form partnerships in preparation for launching an affordable housing venture that will provide decent houses with formal ownership rights to impoverished families struggling to escape poverty and/or slum housing conditions.  Campbell's work will focus on strategies that remove barriers to formal home ownership for poor people, such as innovations in credit-profiling, micro-mortgages and community land trusts.


Ghatkopar area in the city of Mumbai, India

Archit Bhise (2013, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science)
Archit Bhise and Shreesh Naik will be working on creating an emergency referral system to triage patients more efficiently and improve logistics of care delivery. They will be working in the Ghatkopar area in the city of Mumbai, India to pilot their system.

Shreesh Naik (2013, Chemical Biological Engineering)
Shreesh Naik  and Archit Bhise will be working on creating an emergency referral system to triage patients more efficiently and improve logistics of care delivery. They will be working in the Ghatkopar area in the city of Mumbai, India to pilot their system

Hyderabad, India

Srikanth Bolla (2013, Computer Science)
Srikanth will set up a computer training center for visually challenged students in Hyderabad to provide a computer training course which will be essential for independent learning, email communication and internet browsing, accessing materials and to acquire employment.

Bangalore, India

Akansh Murthy, (2013, Biology)
Akansh will work with the MIT House of Volunteers and other organizations to provide impoverished students with computer-based education in a semi-rural town in Bangalore, India. Expanding on this previous project in the same school, he will install a new set of computers using a proprietary server-client system and design a computer center with free and unique educational software so that students can begin to realize the true potential of computers and related educational tools in an area that never had such powerful resources.

Noida, India

Mauricio Gomez (G, Technology and Policy Program)
Mauricio will be working with Drishtee, an organization working to reduce poverty in India through entrepreneurship and technology in villages across the country. Drishtee is currently working in the design of a project in which mobile banking services are brought to remote rural communities. Mauricio's job will be to identify additional services that can ride on the platform used for mobile banking in order to make such platform sustainable.


Istanbul, Turkey

Christie Lin (2011, Nuclear Engineering)
Christine is continuing to lead an engineering and public awareness workshop at Robert College American High School in Istanbul, Turkey to address carbon monoxide poisoning. CO poisoning puts many lives in underserved communities at risk due to malfunctioning soba heaters. In summer 2010, seven high school students and Christie developed both an innovative carbon monoxide detector through science and engineering investigations, and also an educational program for these communities to increase carbon monoxide poisoning safety and awareness.  She will return to support the group in furthering science research, and developing the education program with the Turkish government.