The Puerto Rico Project Center is one of many project centers that Worcester Polytechnic Institute operates worldwide. At these centers, WPI students and faculty work closely with sponsoring organizations on projects with local and regional impacts. Projects address complex problems faced by local sponsors, and student teams bring new approaches and unconventional thinking to develop potential solutions.

Our project center in Puerto Rico is one of our longest continuously operating project centers, having hosted groups of students every year for more than 20 years. Based in San Juan, students work in interdisciplinary teams with sponsoring organizations both in the metropolitan area and elsewhere around the island. Teams work for a total of 14 weeks on projects identified by their sponsors, and are on-site in Puerto Rico for the last 7 weeks of work. Over the years, we have coordinated with a wide range of sponsoring organizations, including governmental (federal and Puerto Rican) agencies, non-profits, and private sector entities.

While the projects our students take on cover a broad range of topics, the center has developed a primary focus on projects related in some way to sustainable development. Projects typically focus in complex problems that address the impacts of technology or science on human and natural systems, or on applications of technology and science to effect change or mitigate negative impacts in those systems.

More about WPI’s global projects program can be found here.


Team Alternative Crops (Juan Torres, Daniel Youkana, and Craig Teed, all class of 2016) interviewing a farmer in Caguas, Puerto Rico.


'I definitely think differently about how societal problems should be solved. Before my IQP in Puerto Rico, I had no knowledge of how many stakeholders can be affected by one change in a society, and without consideration for all stakeholders, a “solution” can cause even more problems than it solves.'

-Juan Torres '16, team Alternative Crops