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Collin Leonard (Pratt ‘19) completed his independent project during the summer of 2016 in Quito, Ecuador, working with the Range of Motion Project (ROMP). ROMP is a nonprofit health care organization dedicated to providing prosthetic and orthotic care to underserved individuals and communities. During his two months at ROMP, Leonard worked on two major projects: a bionic hand and a dressing device for patients at clinic.
Leonard first worked on a 3D printed prosthetic hand called the HACKberry, using the design model and license systems made available through the HACKberry Open Source Project. This community-driven, open source policy means that artificial arm users and developers can access all the necessary files and materials to print the bionic hand. A report on the design was sent back to the developers, allowing Leonard to give feedback that will help developers around the world improve the model’s next prototype. In this way, Leonard and his partners at ROMP were able to directly contribute to ongoing global progress in the design and production of bionic and artificial limbs.
Additionally, Leonard was involved in building a dressing device for a bilateral amputee patient at the clinic. Leonard worked on multiple designs for the device, then iteratively built and improved them. He hopes that the low cost of the device will allow a large number of bilateral amputees to gain access to the tools needed to live a more independent life. Throughout his progress on both of these projects, Leonard also worked at a prosthetic clinic three days a week building prosthetics and orthotics in the ROMP workshop.
For this interview with DukeEngage, Leonard discussed the many challenges associated with 3D printing and the ample room for advancement in the field. Despite the frustrations of working with this relatively new technology, Leonard says that the relationships he built with the patients and their families was the most rewarding part of building these devices.
At Duke, Leonard’s work with the Innovation Co-Lab helped encourage his interest in 3D modeling and design. Leonard’s DukeEngage experience in Ecuador affirmed his desire to work internationally after graduation. After realizing a particular interest in the role that patents and corporations play in the process of innovation, Leonard has positioned his post-graduation graduation goals toward international business and social entrepreneurship.
To learn more about the Range of Motion Project, visit our Featured Partners Page
The DukeEngage National Advisory Board is comprised of prominent Duke alumni and friends from around the country who have demonstrated the values of leadership and service that DukeEngage embodies. The role of this Board is one of advice and advocacy.
We extend our gratitude and warm welcome to the following new board members:
Patricia Morton '77, P'06, Charlotte, NC
Alexandra Swain, '13, New York, NY
Andrew Nurkin '03, Lambertville, NJ
Mark Todzo '86, P'20, Hillsborough, CA
Benay Todzo P'20, Hillsborough, CA
Dennis Clements H.S. '73-'74, H.S. '86-'88, P'04, Chapel Hill, NC
DukeEngage is proud to celebrate the release of Doing Development in West Africa, a Duke University Press book featuring the work of DukeEngage participants, edited and facilitated by DukeEngage Togo program leader, Charles Piot. Since 2008, cultural anthropologist Charles Piot has connected Duke students with the opportunity to initiate development projects in West Africa through DukeEngage Togo. This year, he has compiled student essays documenting and reflecting on the work done in these communities as a way of sharing the challenges, successes, and failures of carrying out meaningful initiatives.
Piot’s contributions help contextualize the various student projects in terms of West African developmental progress in recent history, and provide insight regarding the prospective success of different types of ventures. By giving DukeEngage participants the chance to share their perspective, Doing Development in West Africa emphasizes the importance of cultural understanding and discovery when approaching challenges abroad.
Join us in celebrating the book’s release on Thursday, October 27, 2016, from 4-6pm in the Duke Office of Civic Engagement (Smith Warehouse, Bay 9, First Floor). The event will include an introduction from Piot, as well as selected readings from DukeEngage participants. DukeEngage and the Duke Office of Civic Engagement are thrilled to be presenting the publication, and hope it inspires students to strive to broaden the range of impact of their service learning experiences.
DukeEngage is pleased to announce that Thomas Phillips will be joining its staff as Assistant Director for Programs. The Alabama native attended Auburn University prior to several years of service all around the globe, including membership in the Peace Corps, and teaching languages in New Mexico and South Korea. As a member of the DukeEngage team, Phillips will be able to pass his understanding of the value of global civic engagement onto Duke students. Visit the DukeEngage Staff Bio page to read more about Thomas Phillips.
New for the summer of 2017, programs have been added in Chile, Costa Rica, India, Rwanda, Uganda and Hawaii.
Three of the six new programs — Neltume, Chile; Monteverde and Santa Elena, Costa Rica; and Kaua’i, HI — focus on environmental policy, sustainability and conservation efforts. All three are faculty-led programs. The new program in Ahmedabad, India, is also faculty-led, with a focus on children and youth, women’s empowerment and human services. The program in Kigali, Rwanda, focuses on public health, education, land reform, women’s rights and the well-being of children; this faculty-led program has strong ties to the Duke Center for Documentary Studies. The final program, Uganda-EWH (Engineering World Health), will focus on health care technology/engineering projects.
Congrats to the winning participants in the 2nd annual DukeEngage Photo Find Awards. During their summer working with community partners in the U.S. and abroad, DukeEngage group and independent project participants were invited to submit their best photos in four categories: immersion, partnership, reflection and gratitude. The following 8 images and artist statements were selected as winners because they best represent the DukeEngage mission and values.
Brian Grasso, Sage Garcia, and Matthew Brague presented DukeEngage Executive Director, Eric Mlyn with the Masai Staff after returning from a DukeEngage independent project in Kimana, Kenya. The staff is a symbol of the highest authority in the Masai culture, and the boys were asked by the community to give it to the "male leader" of DukeEngage. The boys partnered with Just One Africa and Lenkai Christian School for ten weeks this past summer, and worked closely with the community in Kimana through various projects.
As reported by Nidhila Masha of The Chronicle, DukeEngage and the Global Education Office have partnered to create programing to support students coming back to Duke after time abroad.
"The Chronicle's Nidhila Masha interviewed Carolyn Covalt and Abigail Grubbs - program coordinators for the Global Education Office for Undergraduates - and Meredith Casper, the assistant director for training and student development at DukeEngage. They discussed the reasons for the dinner series and the difficulties students face re-adjusting to life on campus."
On Wednesday, September 7, The Chronicle reported that "Much Ado About Nothing" will be preformed at Duke and Durham by the Castle Theatre Company, a result of the relationship between Durham, England, and Durham, North Carolina, fostered by DukeEngage.
"This 'Much Ado' also has a broader significance, both at home and overseas. It is the next step for DukeEngage Durham-Durham: since 2012, Duke students have been visiting our Sister City every summer to do community service. This visit will further strengthen the bond between Duke and Durham University, and hopefully anticipate more student collaborations in the future."
Working with Ms. Amanda Moore McBride of the University of Denver, Eric Mlyn, the executive director of DukeEngage, has published an essay on social innovation and civic engagement, which can be found in Diversity and Democracy's summer issue as well as here, on the Association of American Colleges and Universities website.
"Look at the traffic in your email inbox over the last week. If your inbox looks like ours, take note of the number of emails you have received, from both internal and external colleagues, announcing a new undergraduate competition for the best innovative solution to a social problem, a new course on how to construct a business plan to start a social impact organization, or a competition for funding to start a new campus organization. To us, the volume of these emails is stunning, and it speaks to a broader trend in the higher education system."