May 21, 2013

Georgetown Students Roll up Shirt Sleeves to Study Economic Development in Ethiopia

Thirteen SFS-Q students spent nine days in Ethiopia studying the impact of land policy and agriculture in the economic development of the country. In addition, they also focused on the important role that women play in the nations' development. The trip was organized under the University’s Community Engagement Program (CEP).

Upon their arrival in Addis Ababa, the students began work immediately, meeting with the Ethiopian Economics Association, the United Nations Development Programme, the Center for National Health, the United States Agency for International Development and Fortune Business Weekly. The students applied what they learned when they interacted with a local community in Debre Birhan, where they spent four days helping the community in building a house with Habitat for Humanity.

The CEP is an SFS-Q initiative that aims to provide a better context to the conventional learning that occurs in a classroom. It is built on the premise that experiential and on-site learning enhances the contextual experience of students. In addition, it introduces students to concepts of social justice and allows them to understand and address the development challenges around the world.

Twenty-five students are selected every year for the CEP after a rigorous application process. This year the program focused on Ethiopia as it provided a great case study for students to learn more about the economic challenges the country has faced and the efforts of the government and civil society to improve the lives of citizens.

“This fieldwork gives students a chance to interact with the community,” said Uday Rosario, SFS-Q community-based learning administrator. “The students piece together what they heard in Addis Ababa with what they experience in the field.”

The full story can be read here: