Textbooks Africa donates books for Mzuni

3 09 2016

I’d like to thank Textbooks Africa for their generous donation of 75 boxes(!) of books to the Mzuni Library Initiative.

The Mzuni Library Initiative

The Mzuni Library Initiative would like to extend many heartfelt thanks to Textbooks Africa for the generous donation of 75 boxes of books for the Mzuzu University Library. On August 29th, we were excited to welcome Francesco, a representative of Textbooks Africa, to Virginia Tech. Pictured below are volunteers Francesco and Kevin with the book donations.

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One of the best parts of the day was getting to show Francesco the beautiful farmlands in Blacksburg while transporting the books. I was lucky to snap this picture in a peaceful moment before the team arrived and the fun began!

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We are also grateful to Zach and Danny, engineers from the Unmanned Systems Lab, for continually being the “willing hands” of the initiative and assisting with moving heavy boxes of books. Thanks Zach and Danny!

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Final WASH Presentations

28 07 2016

This morning, students taking our joint WASH course in Malawi presented their final presentations to a group of key stakeholders and faculty at Mzuzu University. The session was introduced by Dr. Loveness Kaunda, the Deputy Vice Chancellor of Mzuzu University. I will post the presentations from this session soon, along with the briefing documents the students prepared to capture the key findings from their research. I was extremely impressed by what the students were able to develop in such a short period of time. More to follow on this.

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Interim Library Open

31 05 2016

Mzuzu University recently opened an interim library. We are now working to ship several palettes of books to Malawi that we have collected via the Mzuni Library Initiative.

The Mzuni Library Initiative

In May 2016, Mzuzu University opened an interim library.  The former students’ dining hall has been remodeled into a small, but functional, university library. Some book donations have already been received from individuals and organizations in Malawi, the UK, and other countries, and more will soon be sent from the US. However, many of the specific titles needed for student’ course work are missing. Click HERE for more information about how you can help.

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Novnit Kashyap (IITK-VT Scholar)

12 05 2016

I’d like to thank Ricky Cox and Theresa Burriss for hosting this visit to Radford University’s Selu Conservancy. This was an excellent way for Novnit Kashyap and Charles Chirwa (two visiting scholars from India and Malawi, respectively) to learn about Virginia’s culture and history.

IITK-VT Partnership on Sustainable and Resilient Infrastructure

Novnit Kashyap, a student in the Department of Civil Engineering at IIT Kanpur, has arrived at Virginia Tech as a visiting research scholar. He will be working under the guidance of Dr. Ralph Hall in the School of Public and International Affairs for a period of two months (May and June, 2016).

Novnit will work on creating proposals for short term professional development courses to be offered at Virginia Tech’s India ICTAS Innovation Center. Accordingly, he will carry out research to study the nature of professional development courses that are needed in India and engage with prospective faculty at Virginia Tech.

In India, his research focuses on the sustainability parameters for urban water resource infrastructure in the context of smart cities.

The images below were taken during a recent visit to Radford University’s Selu Conservancy, where Novit and visiting scholar Charles Chirwa (from Mzuzu University, Malawi) were able…

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Organizing the First Wave of Books

13 04 2016

The Mzuni Library Initiative

I’d like to thank all of the students and faculty who volunteered their time this evening to sort through and pack the first wave of books that we hope to ship to Mzuzu University in the near future. The pictures below capture some of our activities.

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Congratulations Nneoma Nwankwo!

10 04 2016

Congratulations Nneoma for being named Virginia Tech’s Undergraduate Student of the Year! The pictures below were taken this evening during Virginia Tech’s Student Recognition Banquet at the VT Inn. Nneoma began the day by giving a presentation at the ACC Meeting of the Minds Conference in Syracuse, NY. Fortunately, the snow stopped this afternoon and she was able to return to Virginia in time for the ceremony. She had quite the day!

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Dr. Yehyun An Receives Outstanding Dissertation Award

25 03 2016

Congratulations to Dr. Yehyun (Hannah) An for winning the Outstanding Dissertation Award in the Social Science, Business, Education, and Humanities category at Virginia Tech’s Graduate Awards Banquet last night.

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Help Mzuni via “Amazon Smile”

21 03 2016

Please consider helping the Mzuni Library Initiative via Amazon Smile.

The Mzuni Library Initiative

If you already shop on Amazon and would like to support the Mzuni Library Initiative, we invite you to shop at smile.amazon.com and choose the Malawi Education and Children’s Welfare Foundation as your charity of choice.

How it Works

1. Visit smile.amazon.com.

2. Sign in and Choose Your Charity. We have registered the “Malawi Education and Children’s Welfare Foundation” with Amazon so please search for us.  We recommend you enter “Malawi” in the search box and scroll down until you see the name of the foundation. Once you have selected the foundation, you should receive an email confirmation from Amazon.

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4. Begin shopping. After selecting the foundation, everything else functions the same. For each product you purchase via Amazon Smile, Amazon will donate 0.5% of your purchase to the Malawi Education and Children’s Welfare Foundation.

5. Share with your friends. After you’ve successfully completed a purchase on Amazon Smile

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How You Can Help

9 03 2016

Ashley Taylor provides a great example of VT’s motto Ut Prosim (That I May Serve).

The Mzuni Library Initiative

In the video below, Ashley Taylor (a graduate student at Virginia Tech) talks about the Mzuni Library Initiative and how you can help.

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IRRT International Leads Article

9 03 2016

The Mzuni Library Initiative

We would like to thank the International Relations Round Table (IRRT) of the American Library Association for including an article about the Mzuni Library Initiative in their International Leads publication (see page 5).

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