Trading the winter weather in Oxford for the extreme heat of West Africa, Dr. Nancy Dupont and freshman journalism major Sudu Upadhyay spent winter intersession with the Ole Miss chapter of Engineers Without Borders in Togo.
Eleven engineering students, led by Marni Kendricks, assistant dean of engineering, and Michael Costelli of Gulfport, professional mentor, built a three-room school building in the village of Hedomé in the Vogan region of Togo. Local villagers assisted with what’s known as “sweat” equity.
“This is the most magnificent building we’ve ever seen in this village,” said Rev. Kokou Loko, a Baptist minister with churches in Lomé and Hedomé. “We can’t thank the engineering students enough for their service to my people.”
“This is a big deal to me because I’m getting to witness something that could be life-changing for the people of this village,” said Upadhyay. “For me as a young student journalist, the experience is incredibly valuable.”
The engineering team and the journalists returned to Oxford on January 19.