Mission 2017: Global Water Security
“Your Mission is to devise and plan the implementation of bold new strategies to ensure that all nations – including those considered to be underdeveloped – have access to clean fresh water while preserving freshwater ecosystems. Your plan should include incentives to get people to act on your solutions. This issue cannot be ignored and quite simply, the future of humankind hangs in the balance.”
Mission 2017 began with over forty MIT freshmen gathered in an auditorium and ended with a presentation to a panel of specialists and the general public on how to solve one of the world’s most pressing issues, water security. The class is student-driven from the first day to the last, and though alumni mentors and UTFs (undergraduate teaching fellows who have already completed Mission) provide guidance and advice, freshmen are expected to act as scientists and engineers from the start.
Most college classes involve lectures, homework, and tests, and no matter how difficult the problem is, a solution can always be arrived at. Solving Complex Problems (12.000) is nothing like most college classes. Students work in teams to research and propose solutions to an “unsolvable” problem: one that crosses disciplines and requires integration of engineering, science, economic, political, and social concepts. In past years students have taken on food security, carbon sequestration, and the future of strategic metals and minerals. There is no set structure; students organize themselves into teams and work independently to research and innovate solutions to their mission, learning how to utilize MIT’s vast resources along the way. The semester culminates in a student presentation and question and answer session; the Mission 2017 presentation can be viewed here.
A successful Mission requires collaboration, creativity, and effort, but every year, students have invariably delivered a thoughtful, comprehensive solution. Mission specialists leave 12.000 with a better understanding of group dynamics and interdisciplinary thought, and perhaps a new desire to tackle another one of the world’s greatest challenges.
To learn more about Terrascope, visit the class site.
To contact the students of Mission 2017, email firstname.lastname@example.org
The students of Mission 2017 would like to thank these people, without whom the project could not have been completed:
Undergraduate Teaching Fellows:
|Ana Vasquez||Holly Josephs||Julia Longmate||Patience Stevens|
|Anna Walsh||Jaya Narain||Laura Standley||Rin Yunis|
|Dirk Stahlecker||Jessica Fujimori||Lealia Xiong||Sabina Maddila|
|Heather Sweeney||Judy Pu||Linda Seymour|
Mission 2017 Students:
|Ali Trueworthy||Erin Reynolds||Joseff Kolman||Melanie Abrams|
|Anna Jungbluth||Fiona Paine||Kristina Kim||Mohamed Hassan Kane|
|Anthony Occidentale||Francesca Majluf||Libby Koolik||Shinjini Saha|
|Brian Tom||Hayley Sypniewski||Malte Ahrens||Willow Jarvis|
|Devin Morgan||Jason Hyun||Maria Ruiz||Zhishen Juju Wang|
|Emma Chant||Jonathan Morrell||Martin Martinez|