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Three engineering students receive awards for humanitarian projects this summer


Three engineering undergraduates have received awards from the Nichols Humanitarian Fund to work on humanitarian projects during the summer academic break. The Nichols Humanitarian Fund is a companion scholarship fund to the Nichols-Chancellor’s Medal and 32 Vanderbilt students received awards in 2022.

Westin Bate is a biomedical engineering major, ’23, from Gross Pointe Farms, Michigan. His project location is Cape Town, South Africa. “I will be working with the International Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology to develop and hopefully mass produce a bio-friendly pesticide to combat the fall army worm. The fall army warm is an invasive species that is destroying the South African corn crop.”

Anish Giri, a physics and computer science major, ’25, from Kawasoti, Nepal, will work in Nawalpur District, Nepal. “My aim is to spend time being both teacher and student in these schools for four weeks. I will interact with students and teachers to understand the problems existing in the schools and discuss the possible solutions to those problems. We collectively will try to recognize different problems existing in the school that are hindering students’ growth and try to solve them with available resources.”

Alyssa Questell is a biomedical engineering and environmental sociology major, ’23, from Cincinnati. Her project is in Nashville. “By partnering with a low-income Nashville public high school, I will work to implement an engineering makerspace complete with 3D printers, circuitry kits, and other prototyping tools. The goal is to empower students with tools for creation and inspire future engineers.”

Contact: Brenda Ellis, 615 343-6314
brenda.ellis@vanderbilt.edu