The Evans Family Fellowship supports research and travel for graduate work in humanitarian engineering through the generous donation from Dick and Gretchen Evans. This dedicated support is for graduate students to gain first-hand experience, disseminate research results, or access unique educational opportunities. This work enriches our OSU campus environment by enhancing linkages and exposure to humanitarian engineering through active engagement of the fellows in sharing their experiences with others.
Stories about the experiences of our students and fellows can be found on the OSU Humanitarian Engineering Student Blog. And a list of current graduate students in mechanical engineering and their bios is also available.
Rachel is an MS student in civil engineering. Her research focuses on soil instability during earthquakes and tsunamis. In particular, she focuses on how critical buildings and infrastructure respond during natural hazards, with the goal of increasing community resilience in seismically active areas worldwide. She also has an interest in engineering education and has been involved in the development and implementation of visual demonstration models into the classroom. The Evans Fellowship enables Rachel to accompany her adviser to Nepal for capacity-building, education and research in earthquake engineering.
Lauren is an MS PCMI student in Water Resources Engineering. She is interested in examining agricultural buffering efficiency influenced by forestry spatial design. With the Evans Fellowship, she will be traveling to Ecuador in the Summer of 2016 to collect water and soil samples in the Babahoyo River Basin, interview local agricultural producers, and connect with land management bureaus. Lauren intends to use her research to inform potential projects while serving through PCMI.
Phylicia is an MS student in Electrical Engineering with research interests in the reliability of microgrids, with particular application in rural environments. She is currently working on integrating existing diesel microgrids in rural Alaska with renewable energy and energy storage. including reliability and cost-benefit analyses. The Evans Fellowship will help support both stipend and field study expenses.
Susan is an MS student in Water Resources Engineering. Her current research involves hydraulic systems and their influence on the spread of invasive plants. She will be using her Evans Fellowship to support research in Ethiopia's Wabe Shebelle watershed in water quantity and quality. Working with the International Water Management Institute's East Africa Office, Susan will visit current monitoring sites and gauges, construct rainfall models with historical and current project data, and contribute to research surrounding the impact of El Nino on selected agro-ecologies of Ethiopia.
Elizabeth is a master’s student in Water Resources Engineering. She will be attending a GLOBE teacher’s training in Kenya focused on giving teachers tools to discuss scientific observations of atmospheric and hydrologic variables in the classroom. Elizabeth will then coordinate a teacher training scheduled for next summer, building upon the previous training with location specific portions for science and geography teachers in Uganda as part of Trans African Hydro-Meteorological Observatory TAHMO's School 2 School Program.
Bonnie is a PhD student in medical anthropology and a graduate research assistant for the ADVANCE grant at OSU. Her research examines the lived experience and quality of life for women suffering from obstetric fistula. Since 2011, she has worked with TERREWODE, a Ugandan NGO dedicated to serving these women. She is working with a team of engineering students to develop a sustainable income-generating project for fistula survivors, goat-milk soap. The Evans Fellowship will support implementation of the project and development of additional capstone projects.
Thomas is earning a dual-major PhD in water resources engineering and mechanical engineering. His research focuses on improving tools for modeling the impacts of climate change on streamflow in mountain regions. Thomas is applying these tools to the Indus Basin in Asia and using the results of his streamflow analysis to understand effects of climate change on small-scale hydropower potential within the region. The tools that Thomas develops are all open source, easy to implement for any global land area, and distributed at GlobalClimateData.org.
Megan Richardson is a master’s student studying mechanical engineering through the Peace Corps Master’s International Program. Her community-based project in Tanzania will be developed around the desires and needs of the community she will be living with while serving in the Peace Corps.
Leah Tai is a master’s student in water resources engineering. She has been working with the Trans African Hydro-Meteorological Observatory (TAHMO) to create networks between schools in the US and Kenya. This knowledge exchange involves installing on-site weather monitoring stations and motivating investigation by students of local and global weather.
Jon Viducich is a master’s student in water resources engineering focusing on the sedimentation processes in sand dams. His research interests include rainwater harvesting techniques, sediment transport in ephemeral rivers, and the intersections between water and agriculture in water-scarce regions. Jon is also working on the TAHMO project.
Sahar Beheshti Zavareh is a PhD student in Geography focusing on sustainable water financing projects. By combining her background in women’s’ advocacy with her current studies, Sahar’s research “targets underserved communities in all aspects from financing to engineering, by engaging in their participation to fully take charge of the project and its maintenance, once it has been fully implemented.”