Sunday, December 03, 2006

Dartmouth is coming to New Orleans

About 40-50 of students from Dartmouth College are coming to New Orleans this week as part of team service trips to the Gulf Coast. The students will be in NOLA for two weeks, and a number of them have expressed interest in helping this project in their spare time. That's amazing considering how much other volunteer work they expect to do.

Much of this project in the coming week is fueled by Dartmouth connections:

- I'm at Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth as a senior research fellow in its Center for Digital Strategies.

- My research assisant Christiana Toomey, who is coming to New Orleans for the project too, is a recent graduate of the College and its Thayer School of Engineering.

- Pam Dessaso and John Wilkerson are alumni of the Tuck School's Advanced Minority Business Executive Program. In addition to being incredibly busy business owners, they've already volunteered hours of their time to this project and will be traveling to New Orleans to participate further.

- Ben Wilson, a Dartmouth senior, is in New Orleans right now as part of his independent study that examines the user experience of the Gentilly GIS (geographic information system) that is so central to the local recovery mapping we're doing.

- Xun Shi from Dartmouth's Geography department leads this project with me, and Dartmouth senior Ari Bezman continues to add new features to the Gentilly GIS and enable it to work smoothly for us when mapping in New Orleans very soon.

- And there are so many others from Dartmouth who helped this project get to this point: Tina Catania, Katie Greenwood, David Heinicke, Kim Sheu, Rose Mutiso, members of my fall 2005 Organizations & Management class, and even Dartmouth parents and alumni in New Orleans.

- Further, there's Dartmouth's Provost Barry Scherr. Support from his office gave life to this novel and multi-disciplinary project when it was more a promising idea than a concrete set of activities and participants.

I'm pretty excited to see the various kinds of impact we at Dartmouth can make in New Orleans this month, originating from a campus so far away in rural New Hamsphire!


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