Mines News

Release Date Tuesday, February 21, 2023

South Dakota Mines Forges New Partnership with Peruvian University thanks to 100,000 Strong in the Americas Innovation Fund

Dr. David Dixon, a South Dakota Mines professor in the Karen M. Swindler Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering, stands with Ryan Rowlands, director of Public Diplomacy Office in the Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs at the U.S. Department of State, on an early February visit to the U.S. Chief of Mission’s Residence in Bogotá, Colombia.


South Dakota Mines and the Universidad Peruana de Ciencias Aplicadas in Lima, Peru, (UPC Peru) were awarded a grant from the 100,000 Strong in the Americas Innovation Fund to build a partnership that includes a student exchange that builds technical, intercultural and soft-skills training that are needed to improve water quality in Peru.

This program will increase student and faculty collaboration, mobility and cross-cultural skills in the U.S. and Peru. It will also hone student skills via a water sanitation project for families who lack water services in the Lima district of Villa María del Triunfo, Peru.

Fog Catcher SystemCapstone design student teams and faculty from both universities will work together virtually and in-person on implementation of a fog catcher system that collects water from the air to be used for domestic purposes, irrigation of orchards and the implementation of a waste-water treatment system to be re-used for irrigation. At Mines, multidisciplinary teams of students from chemical engineering, civil and environmental engineering and other departments will be involved in the project. Learn more about the overall effort in this video.

“By participating in this collaborative design project, students from both South Dakota Mines and UPC-Peru will learn about each other’s culture, country and educational differences, as well as similarities, helping them to be more globally aware and able to contribute positively to both societies in the future,” says David Dixon, Ph.D., a South Dakota Mines professor in the Karen M. Swindler Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering.

Students at South Dakota Mines and UPC will begin work on the project in the summer of 2023 and continue throughout the coming year.

The 100,000 Strong in the Americas Innovation Fund is the public-private sector collaboration between the U.S. Department of State, U.S. Embassies, Partners of the Americas, corporations and foundations working together to stimulate new higher education partnerships between the United States and the rest of the Western Hemisphere.

“We appreciate the opportunities the grant enables us to pursue. This multinational project embodies South Dakota Mines’ vision, ‘to develop world-class leaders’ and mission ‘to educate scientists and engineers to address global challenges and engage in partnerships to transform society’,” says Suzi Aadland, director of the Ivanhoe International Center at Mines. “Engineering and science are global enterprises and education in these fields must prepare our graduates to work successfully on multi-national and multicultural teams. Their work will have a global impact, and this is one project that will help our students develop some skills necessary to be successful.”

Dixon-Peru-2South Dakota Mines is one of 23 colleges and universities in the United States and 31 higher education institutions in Colombia, Peru, Ecuador, and Bolivia that received funding from the 100,000 Strong in the Americas Innovation Fund this year. The grants support innovative and inclusive training and exchange programs for students and faculty in strategic areas, including climate solutions, sustainable energy, digital transformation, health, creative industries, and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math), among others.



About South Dakota Mines  

Founded in 1885, South Dakota Mines is one of the nation’s leading engineering, science and technology universities. South Dakota Mines offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees and a best-in-class education at an affordable price. The university enrolls 2,493 students with an average class size of 24. The South Dakota Mines placement rate for graduates is 98 percent, with an average starting salary of more than $70,036. For these reasons  South Dakota Mines is ranked among the best engineering schools in the country for return on investment. Find us online at www.sdsmt.edu and on FacebookTwitter, LinkedInInstagram, and Snapchat.

Contact: Mike Ray, 605-394-6082, mike.ray@sdsmt.edu

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