Engineering with a Purpose

Engineering Students Making a Difference

From creating a water filtration system for school children in Africa to designing affordable, sustainable housing in South America, Gonzaga Engineering students use sound engineering principles in innovative ways to help people.

Learning with a Purpose

Sustainable Energy, Recycled Technology, Affordable Housing, Clean Water

6 Projects
50+ Gonzaga Students
Thousands of Lives Touched

Sustainable Housing- South America

Civil Engineering students and faculty are looking for ways to create environmentally sustainable and affordable housing for residents in Columbia. The team is developing home construction designs that use ecologically responsible materials that local residents can afford.


Sustainable Building in Sudan

Senior Civil Engineering students are working to complete a preliminary building design for the Catholic University in Juba, Sudan. The design will use environmentally responsible and affordable materials as well as construction methods.

The students hope the project will inspire more sustainable building projects in Juba and the surrounding area as the students educated there become leaders throughout Sudan and Africa.


Computers for Kids

Gonzaga students are combining computer science study with social justice. Computer Science 121 students rebuild donated computers for groups as diverse as elementary schools in Africa and low-income families in Eastern Washington.

Professor Patricia Crowley, came up with the idea because students expressed interest in curriculum with real-world application and meaning. She hopes this project will meet those interests while teaching students the basics of computer hardware.


Tutoring Local Students

Members of Tau Beta Pi, the engineering honor society, are tutoring local 3rd to 12th grade students in math. The GU students volunteer on Saturdays to work with students who need help with math concepts and homework.

One recent graduate, Kelli Bacon, said she was surprised by the positive impact her tutoring had on two 4th grade girls who were struggling to learn their multiplication tables. The girls scheduled sleepovers on Friday nights to study before the Saturday tutoring sessions. The girls even took their homework bowling and did math problems while waiting for the pins to be set up!

Kelli says she misses the time they shared as the girls greeted her with notes and hugs each week, "We just really developed a bond."


Clean Water in Benin

Engineers Without Borders at Gonzaga worked with the Songhay Center in Benin, West Africa to design and build a water filtration system. Students and faculty traveled to Benin in the summer to teach local residents how to make the clay filters. The team collaborated with nursing and science students to test the local water and teach residents the importance of clean water.


Windmills for Water

Residents in Kenya, Africa need clean water but have very few options for water purification. Gonzaga engineering students and faculty are working on a windmill project that recycles available materials to create power for a water purifying project.

By using old barrels and discarded car parts that are readily available, residents will be able to power water purification systems as well as home industries.

502 E. Boone Avenue
Spokane, WA 99258-0026
Phone: (509) 313-3523
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Dr. Stephen E. Silliman
Phone: (509) 313-3522