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DUT students excel at #COCREATEMYCITY

DUT students excel at #COCREATEMYCITY

In April 2017 the Netherlands Embassy approached the Durban University of Technology to be part of an International project collaboration between students from DUT, UKZN and two universities in the Netherlands, Delft University of Technology and Erasmus University Rotterdam.

The project took the form of a competition. Teams were tasked in coming up with innovative solutions to problems facing the EThekweni Municipality. These problems were identified by the municipality as real problems facing the citizens of Ethekweni. The problems identified centred around water, Health, Energy, Transportation and Urban Agriculture.

The South African students were paired with Dutch students in groups and each group was allocated a problem and were tasked with coming up with innovative solutions to the challenges. DUT and UKZN students were divided among the teams according to their expertise. After calls to the DUT academic community, DUT students were nominated by their departments and then selected. Selected participants are studying for degrees in B.Tech: Environmental Health, M.Tech: Information and Communication Technology, and PHD and Masters in Engineering & Built Environment.

The competition, with the arrival in Durban of 20 Dutch students, ran from the 13th November until the 23rd November 2017 when, at a grand finale, the solutions were presented to a distinguished audience including the South African Ambassador to the Netherlands and high ranking EThekweni officials. Presentations were judged by a panel of prominent university and industry experts.

The winning team was Team Health (that included two DUT students) who came up with an innovative solution for air quality in public medical facilities. Each team had academic mentors appointed to help teams with their deliberations.  In another achievement for DUT is that the winning Team Health was mentored by Melishnee Ruthanam from the Department of Environmental Health.

At the end of the competition five South African students were selected as outstanding contributors to the #COCREATEMYCITY project and were judged on knowledge, enthusiasm and their contribution to the success of the project. We are extremely proud that a DUT student, Ms Simphiwe Mkhwanazi was one of the winners and will be going to the Netherlands on an all-expenses paid educational trip. DUT can be enormously proud by all the students who participated in #COCREATEMYCITY as we received very positive feedback on their contributions to the various projects.


Pictured: DUT students with Carol Newman of the International Education and Partnerships  at #COCREATEMYCITY.

Article supplied by: Greg Bass and Carol Newman

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