Undaunted by Pandemic, Honduras-focused Sustainable Community Development Course Continues

Jan. 29, 2021
Dr. Greene with students at HTH project (above), and with OSU delegation at Zamorano (below). Instructor Jaelene Loor Suche.

Jaelene Loor Suche of Ecuador first came to Honduras to study at Zamorano Pan-American Agricultural School.  She then came to OSU to do the internship required of Zamorano undergraduates.  She now has “returned” to both institutions, but virtually. Communities flourish when NGOs work on a development/empowerment model, not a relief/provisional one. This was the subject of a recent seminar.  So Dr Howard Greene, Director of K-12 Education Outreach in OSU’s College of Engineering, made sure his course, ENGR 5797.24 - VE10 Sustainable Community Development – Honduras, includes Spanish language instruction for the OSU undergrads and graduate students enrolled.  Of course, this year they are not able to learn Spanish by being in Honduras, so Loor Suche developed specialized Spanish practice sessions, now taking place on Zoom, supplemented by the Duolingo app.  These sessions complement Zoom classes during which OSU and Zamorano students develop project proposals to implement in the rural communities of Caliche, Lomas del Águila and Las Lomitas. These are focused above all on the harvesting and management of water, so crucial for agriculture and for sustaining life. Other groups involved are the NGO Heart to Honduras (HTH), and of course the community members themselves.  This puts Loor Suche into the majority:  three of the last five Zamorano undergrads who interned at OSU have deepened their relationship with OSU by returning as graduate students, researchers or teachers.