Since 2007, the Cape Town Project Centre has been one of the locations in WPI’s Global Projects Program. Through the Global Projects Program, WPI students may complete their Humanities & Arts requirement (HUA), Interactive Qualifying Project (IQP), or Major Qualifying Project (MQP) in over 30 locations around the world. As part of WPI’s project-based curriculum, students collaborate with peers, faculty advisors, communities, and institutional liaisons to find solutions to societal issues. About 25 juniors travel to Cape Town yearly to complete an IQP that addresses matters in sustainable community development. This year, students were divided into groups to work on water, sanitation, and hygiene reblocking (rearrangement of shacks in informal settlements, process coined by SDI), childhood development care, recycling, social, and infrastructural development in in informal settlements.


DSCN3028Mackenzie Alameda

Mackenzie hails from Budd Lake, New Jersey.  She is a junior at WPI studying Chemical Engineering.  At school she works as a lifeguard, is involved in Student Alumni Society (SAS) and is a sister of Alpha Gamma Delta Sorority.  Her favorite part of Cape Town is the beautiful landscape and seeing all the animals, especially the goats!



Morgan Boyd1382971_10152314392059196_694510502_n

Morgan is a country girl born in Indiana and raised in Woolwich, Maine. She is in her third year at WPI studying Mechanical Engineering with a concentration in thermofluids. She is a sister of Alpha Gamma Delta Sorority, and likes to play rugby and bridge in her spare time.  Her favorite part about Cape Town besides all the amazing people she has met are the clear beaches that remind her of home.



Joe Brown

Joe Brown is from Amish country Pennsylvania, and is a junior studying Mechanical Engineering at WPI. His hobbies include theatre, music, singing, and playing guitar, and he is a brother of the Beta Theta Pi Fraternity. Joe’s favorite thing about Cape Town is performing karaoke at Mitchell’s every Tuesday night!


DSCN2060Ivette Cariño

Ivette Cariño is from Bronx, New York, and is in her third year studying Chemical Engineering at WPI.  At school she is involved in and a sister of the Phi Sigma Sigma Sorority, Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers, Connections Program, and is a Multicultural Recruitment Intern at the Admissions Office. In Cape Town, she enjoys learning about the rich culture, meeting new people, and listening to local music.



Scott Jiusto

Scott Jiusto began his career in the WPI Global Projects Program by teaching ID 2050 classes after moving to Worcester to obtain his PhD at Clark University. He has previously been involved in outreach projects in third world countries, such as recycling efforts, while working with communities. He established the Cape Town Project Centre in 2007 after a group who had returned from the Namibia Project Centre suggested the idea. Since then, Scott has been both the site director and advisor for the Cape Town Project Centre.

Cape Town is a unique project centre in that it allows intensive hands-on experience and involvement in the communities at informal settlements. Scott enjoys the challenges of conducting community sustainable projects. He enjoys the people-oriented work environment and pushing WPI students think beyond themselves. When projects move into the construction phase, conflicts often arise between the working team, community, municipality, and project group, in which a mediator is necessary. Scott has played that role in the past by forming friendships with community leaders. Although he has played the role of a mediator in the past, he will most likely not need to intervene in our project.



Lorraine Higgins

Lorraine joined the WPI Cape Town Project Centre for the first time this year. She is an Associate Teaching Professor in the Humanities and Arts department at WPI. Lorraine has been exposed to many cross-cultural challenges; she has been an advisor for Costa Rica, Denmark, and other project sites. Lorraine also enjoys travelling in her free time. While on project sites, Lorraine enjoys learning from her students when they step out of their boundaries to take on complex problems outside of their area of expertise.