Winners of the 100,000 Strong in the Americas Innovation Fund Competition

California State University, San Marcos

Partners: Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos, Lima

Species Conservation through Innovative Practices in U.S.A and Perú

 California State University and Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos will partner to enhance the academic experience of students in the U.S. and Perú through joint research on wildlife biology and public outreach surrounding jaguar and wild cat conservation. Students will learn about the science, sociology, and data surrounding species conservation while developing their language and design skills in an immersive experience that will start in the classroom and lead to the jungle.  The reoccurring program aims to increase the number of STEM students studying abroad while improving outcomes for students underrepresented in STEM disciplines. Program participants will present their findings and experiences with the goal of improving coexistence between humans and threatened animals, and to influence future generations of STEM students.


George Mason University, Virginia, United States

Partner: Universidad Nacional de la Amazonía Peruana, Maynas, Perú

Building Bridges and Capacity: An Innovative Model for US-Peruvian Educational Exchange

 George Mason University (GMU), in partnership with Universidad Nacional de la Amazonía Peruana (UNAP), will be “Building Bridges and Capacity” with a new project focused on environmental science, conservation biology, and sustainability studies. Expanding on their existing ties and the unique partnerships GMU has with other higher education institutions and organizations, GMU and UNAP are setting the stage for increased student mobility to inspire similar partnerships. The project will begin with the creation of two new credit-bearing field courses in the Peruvian Amazon to enroll students from both universities and will grow number of course offerings and capacity as the project develops. The second layer to the project involves the introduction of study opportunities for UNAP students at the Smithsonian-Mason School of Conservation.


Notre Dame of Maryland University

Partners: Universidad Femenina del Sagrado Corazón, Lima

Agua/Water = Vida/Life

With a shared Catholic identity and core mission to educate women to be leaders and positive change agents in the world, Notre Dame of Maryland University and Universidad Femenina del Sagrado Corazón propose a reciprocal exchange program built to educate students on water, its usage and conservation, and to encourage knowledge and understanding of culture and tradition. Both universities experience the benefits and challenges of being located in coastal cities and recognize the necessity of ensuring a clean and secure water supply in a time of climate change, de-industrialization, and depletion of natural resources. Students will gain a multidimensional understanding of water through environmental, political, and economic lenses while directly comparing and contrasting challenges in both locations and engage in hands-on service learning. 


Pennsylvania State University

Partner: Universidad Nacional de Ingeniería, Lima

Cross-cultural Engagement and STEM Program

Pennsylvania State University (Penn State) and Universidad Nacional de Ingeniería (UNI) propose a new summer exchange program focusing on Global Engineering Culture and Society, offering students the opportunity to strengthen their knowledge and understanding of culture, language, and engineering on a global scale. Penn State and UNI aim to increase student mobility and improve student retention and graduation rates, specifically among minority and low-income students, recognizing the crucial role that study abroad plays in student success. Students participating in the program will develop important competencies in research, collaboration, and cultural awareness to prepare them for success in completing their studies and pursuing future opportunities internationally.


Truckee Meadows Community College, Nevada

Partner: SENATI – Servicio Nacional de Adiestramiento de Trabajo Industrial, Lima

 TMCC – SENATI International Student Exchange Program

A new partnership between Truckee Meadows Community College (TMCC) and SENATI will allow four students and one faculty member from SENATI to participate in a month-long customized training program provided by TMCC’s Applied Technology Center Staff in the summer of 2018. TMCC will draw on its existing connections to Panasonic Energy of North America and TELSA, Inc. to equip students with advanced manufacturing skills provided in the Panasonic Pathway (P3) course modules. The partnership between TMCC and SENATI will give opportunities to study abroad to underrepresented students, such as first-generation, low-income, minority, and underserved populations.


Universidad Antonio Ruiz de Montoya, Lima

Partner: Xavier University, Ohio

Building Just Communities through Environmentally Sustainable and Innovative Practices

Universidad Antonio Ruiz de Montoya (UARM) and Xavier University (XU) will be building on their existing relationship and previous collaborations to create an ongoing program for students from both universities to engage in cultural and academic exchange by studying abroad and by acting as hosts at their home university. Students will focus on water preservation, conservation, and sustainable practices to compare the experiences of Cincinnati to Lima, both of which experience challenges and offer unique solutions to environmental sustainability. In Cincinnati, XU students will welcome UARM students through a 14-day immersion at XU; in Lima, UARM students will accompany XU students for the first half their semester at UARM. Students will act as cultural liaisons and together will advance their understandings of environmental sustainability and innovative practices.


Universidad de Ingeniería y Tecnología, Lima

Partners: Harvard University; Universidad Nacional Amazonica de Madre de Dios

 Collaborative Effort Extension UTEC – SEAS: Impact of Informal Mining on the Peruvian Amazon Rainforest

Universidad de Ingeniería y Tecnología (UTEC) plans to extend its collaboration with the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences of Harvard University (SEAS) focused on assessing the impacts of informal and illegal mining in the Peruvian amazon basin and introduce a new collaboration with the Universidad Nacional Amazonica de Madre de Dios, a rural university located in the Peruvian rainforest. Students from all three institutions will have the opportunity to assess the problems caused by mining and develop and implement solutions to the issues they identify. The program, which has grown from a 4-week program to span over eight months, will begin with the participation of five students from each university who will build, implement, and test a prototype. The program seeks to impact program participants by offering a unique opportunity to collaborate with other students and work within communities directly affected by informal mining to offer solutions and build long-lasting relationships.


Universidad Mayor Nacional de San Marcos, Lima

Partner: University of Washington

InterACTION Labs: An Interdisciplinary Service Learning Exchange Program 

Universidad Mayor Nacional de San Marcos (UNMSM) presents a new interdisciplinary service learning exchange program—InterACTION Labs— building on its existing collaborative relationship with the University of Washington (UW) that will allow students and faculty to assess and address health disparities affecting the informal floating community of Claverito, in Iquitos, Perú. The program promotes an interdisciplinary exchange of ideas by engaging students from academic fields traditionally underrepresented in global health. Peruvian students participating in the program will be encouraged to travel to Seattle for skills training, cross cultural exchange of ideas and technology transfer, fostering the international mobility of students from both participating institutions. Participation in the program is anticipated to increase as the opportunity to impact human and animal health, environmental resilience, and social equity attracts students across disciplines from both universities.


Universidad Nacional Toribio Rodríguez de Mendoza, Chachapoyas

Partner: University of New Hampshire

High-Altitude Agriculture: Sustainable Crop Production Under Plastic Tunnels in the Andes

Universidad Nacional Toribio Rodríguez de Mendoza (UNTRM) and the University of New Hampshire (UNH) present a new partnership encouraging the marginalized students from the Andean and Amazonian regions to develop theoretical-practical skills in crop management and improve their language skills in English and Spanish. The partnership will allow for a valuable exchange of culture and research, opening the opportunity for both student and faculty exchange to share and develop knowledge and understanding of Andean crop physiology and genetic improvement. The first research program will focus on crop production under plastic tunnels and will lead to additional research projects and greater mobility of students and faculty as this new partnership takes shape.


University of Central Florida

Partner: Universidad Nacional de Ingeniería, Lima

Internationalization Program for STEM-Students through Learning and Research Experiences

The University of Central Florida (UCF) and the Universidad Nacional de Ingeniería (UNI) will be partnering to bring research opportunities to STEM students from low-income backgrounds in Perú and the U.S. This partnership will enable students from both participating universities to pursue research at laboratories internationally in projects not available at their home institutions, such as chemical sensors, renewable energy sources, and environmental science. UCF and UNI commit to breaking barriers caused by language and lack of economic resources and will introduce a long-term program as a pathway between universities in Peru and the U.S. enabling underrepresented students to develop skills in research, language, and cultural and scientific competencies.


University of Northern Iowa

Partners: Universidad de Piura

Immersion in Environmental Education

The University Northern Iowa (UNI) and the Universidad de Piura (UDEP) will be implementing a new study abroad opportunity for pre-service teachers focused on providing environmental education and English language training to Peru’s future teachers. Students from UDEP’s Beca Vocación de Maestro program are the target participants for the study abroad opportunity, enabling students coming from disadvantaged economic backgrounds to work towards their degrees with study abroad experience. The program will begin with the participation of ten students, beginning with three weeks of online instruction prior to two weeks of immersion on UNIs campus, and concluding with an additional three weeks of online instruction. By the end of the program, all participants will have also received the necessary training to become certified in the GLOBE program and will be connected to the GLOBE representative in Perú.


Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

Partner: Universidad de Piura

Let’s Design and Evaluate Environmental and Education Policy in the Field: Insights from Behavioral Economics, Field Experiments and Randomized Control Trials

Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech) will be expanding on its existing partnership with Universidad de Piura (UDEP) to reach low-income and underserved students from rural communities in the U.S. and Peru and bring them into contact with language and intercultural learning while enhancing their global knowledge of STEM subjects. Virginia Tech and UDEP have joined their strengths to implement an innovative program that will provide students at both campuses with key insights from behavioral economics and experimental economics related to the design and field evaluation of environmental, resource management, technology adoption, and educational policy in rural communities. The multiplicity of themes interlinked in this program will provide students with a multidimensional understanding of the issues that rural communities face as they participate in coursework and fieldwork at their home institutions and through studying abroad.


Western Washington University

Partner: Universidad Nacional Agraria La Molina, Lima

Biodiversity and Ecosystem Management Education in the US North Cascades and Peruvian Andes

Western Washington University (WWU) and Universidad Nacional Agraria La Molina (UNALM) have begun a long-term research and education collaboration and will send ten Peruvian students to study abroad at WWU for a quarter-long exchange where students will study Conservation of Biological Diversity and Ecosystem Management and develop their English skills. The program seeks to improve access to study abroad for underrepresented groups including women, native Quechua speakers, and rural students and will increase professional preparation for Peruvian students through service learning as they work in U.S. National Parks and Forests to collect environmental data. Following their completion of the program, students will apply their experiences in classrooms and laboratories, continue research, influence future program participants and increase the number of students from both WWU and UNLAM pursuing education abroad.