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Students in Cuba on one of Global Initiative's Past Trips

Past Trips

Read the student reports of the past trips of the Tickle College of Engineering’s Global Initiatives program which includes trips to Cuba, Belize, Peru, Ecuador, Guatemala, and more.


TCE Students in GranadaThe Tickle College of Engineering sponsored an Alternative Spring Break to Nicaragua from March 10 – 17, 2018. Participating in the trip were Biomedical Engineering majors Alicia Matavosian and Elijah Smith, Materials Science majors Christopher Walker and Susan Schickling, Computer Science major Ian Lumsden, Nuclear Engineering major Jonathan Mitchell, Mechanical Engineering major Tyler Newsom, Electrical Engineering major Steven Patrick, Philosophy major Robert Ledbetter, and Speech Pathology major Brenna Clary. All ten participants are Honors students at The University of Tennessee.


Group Shot at Project SiteThe Tickle College of Engineering sponsored the Winter Alternative Break in Havana, Cuba, from December 16 – 22, 2017.  Marking the third trip to Cuba by Global Initiatives were participants Morgan Yount, sophomore in Materials Science, Alexandra Defilippis, freshman biomedical engineering major, Sara Dishner, junior accounting major, Brandon Woodley, senior in Computer Engineering, Hayden Coffey, junior in Computer Science, Kevin Kleiner, junior physics major,  and Natalie Ray and Peter Mathurin, both junior chemical engineering majors.


Global Initiatives Students at the Castillo de San Carlos de la CabanaThe Tickle College of Engineering sponsored the Fall Alternative Break in Havana Cuba, from August 12 – 18, 2017.  Participating in the second Global Initiatives trip to Cuba were: Kunal Ashok, senior mechanical engineering major; David Barnes, senior chemical engineering major; Nicole Gonzalez; senior civil engineering major; Caitlyn Harpell, sophomore materials science major; and Roy Tan and Yaw Mensah, sophomore electrical engineering majors. TCE International Coordinator Judith Mallory led the trip, the 17th for Global Initiatives. Globe Aware of Dallas, Texas, coordinated the trip details.


Global Initiatives Students Pose at Yana CochaThe Tickle College of Engineering’s Alternative Summer Break took place in Ecuador from May 15 – 22, 2017.  Taking part in the sixteenth trip of Global Initiatives were Senior Electrical Engineering major Alex Weber, Junior Computer Engineering major Daniel Barry, Junior Chemical Engineering major Hannah Landau, Sophomore Mechanical Engineering major Jacob O’Brien, and Senior Spanish major Devon Graham. TCE International Coordinator Judith Mallory arranged and led the trip.  Kaya Responsible Travel of the United Kingdom was the provider.


Group Shot of Students in GuatemalaThe Tickle College of Engineering Alternative Spring Break of 2017 took place in Guatemala.  Locations visited include Guatemala City, Antigua, Quetzaltenango, San Andres de Xecul, Chichicastenango, Panajachel, San Juan la Laguna and Lake Atitlan. Taking part in the fifteenth trip of Global Initiatives were sophomore Mechanical Engineering majors Mary Daffron and Justin Heath Harmon, Junior Mechanical majors Sarah Higginbotham and Samuel Scruggs, Senior Aerospace major Max Hackenbrack, Junior Civil major Megan Lamon, Junior Electrical major Shavoshia Leslie, and Junior Computer Science major Kevin Ye.  Judith Mallory, TCE International Coordinator, arranged and led the trip.  Discover Corps of San Diego, an affiliate of the Peace Corps, was the provider.

Yucatán Peninsula, Mexico

Group Shot of Students at UxmalThe Tickle College of Engineering Global Initiatives program embarked on its 14th trip for the Alternative Winter Break, 2016, to the Yucatán Peninsula, Mexico.  Taking part in the trip were Chemical Engineering majors Brooke Ballard, Cassandra Finney, Nicole Heineken, Benjamin Hopkins, Grayson Jones, Sid Mahajan, and Maggie Mann; Material Science majors Christopher Walker, Andrew Ten Eyck, and Jordan Sutton; Mechanical majors Kea Francis, and Victoria Idem; Civil major Morgan Jenkins, Nuclear major Kalie Knecht, and Accounting major Taylor Dishner.  Senior Supply Chain Management major Carmen Philpot served as co-leader of the trip, which took place from December 16 – 23, 2016.

Havana, Cuba

COE Students in CubaFrom May 11 – 17, 2016, the TCE sponsored a trip to Havana, Cuba. Participating in this historic trip were: Evalynn Borrego, freshman, and Reed Schneider, sophomore, both Biomedical Engineering majors; Brian Grim, freshman, and Aubrey Casey, junior, both Mechanical Engineering majors; Abigail Cooper, freshman, Chemical Engineering major; and Meghan Treece, senior in Political Science. TCE International Coordinator Judith Mallory led the trip, the 13th for Global Initiatives. Globe Aware of Dallas, Texas, coordinated the trip details.

San Ignacio, Belize

Victoria Webb and Kelly Arhnolt in XunantunichThe TCE Alternative Spring Break of 2016 took place in San Ignacio, Belize, from March 12 – 19. This marks the first joint project between TCE, who sponsored the trip, and the Chancellor’s Honors Program. An application process was used to select the fifteen attendees: engineering majors Catherine Weiss, Nicolo Franceschetti, Katherine Krouse, Daniel Garza, Robert Nickel, Ryan Marine, Rhett Sexton, Samantha Thorpe, and Camille Bergin were joined by honors non-engineers Bonnie Craighead, Kelly Arnholt, Lydia Cole, Jessica Martinez, Victoria Webb, and Quanita Choudhury. TCE International Coordinator Judith Mallory led the trip.

Cuzco, Peru

City view of Cuzco, PeruOn December 11, 2015, TCE Global Initiatives embarked on its largest Alternative Winter Break to date, to Cuzco, Peru, with twenty students. Those participating in the trip were: nuclear engineering major Zach Bingham; aerospace major Gary Collins; industrial major Matt Poligone; computer science majors Joseph Connor and Jared Smith; biomedical majors Trevor Hepburn and Kristina Bridgwater; materials science majors Evans Gritto, Connor Carr, and Nick Kivi; electrical engineering majors Quillen Blalock and Sam Brown; mechanical engineering majors Jay Fitzsimmons, Andrew Vick, and Ben Jacob; and chemical engineering majors Ethan Bowman, Zak Pasternak, Andy Skipper, Joel Weber, and Cody Winstead. Judith Mallory, TCE International Coordinator, led the trip, along with Max Pridgen, mechanical engineering masters student.

Quito, Ecuador

Heath Skelton, Annabel Large, Taylor Weiskittel, and Erika YoungquistThe Tickle College of Engineering’s Alternative Fall Break took place August 9–16, 2015, in Quito, Ecuador. International Coordinator Judith Mallory accompanied students Annabel Large and Taylor Weiskittel, chemical engineering majors, Heath Skelton, electrical engineering major, and Erika Youngquist, microbiology major, on the trip. United Planet of Boston served as trip provider.

San Ignacio, Belize

University of Tennessee Students in BelizeThe TCE Alternative Summer Break for 2015 took place in San Ignacio, Belize, from May 11–17. Six TCE students accompanied TCE International Coordinator Judith Mallory on the trip. They are: chemical engineers Rosemary Dabbs and Maggie Lau; mechanical engineer Alex Grim; electrical engineer Andrew Turner; biomedical engineer Andre Norfleet; and the first nuclear engineer to travel with Global Initiatives, Joe Willenborg. Kaya Responsible Travel served as the trip provider.

El Jaz, Costa Rica

College of Engineering Students in Costa RicaThe Alternative Spring Break for 2015 took place from March 14–21, in the town of El Jaz, Costa Rica. This marks the third trip by TCE’s Global Initiatives to the country. Taking the trip with International Coordinator Judith Mallory were Emily Beckman, aerospace engineering major; MaryBeth Iannuzzi, David Marsh, and Haley Register, mechanical engineering majors; Jessica Boles, electrical engineering major; and Cody Sain, microbiology major.

Quetzaltenango, Guatemala

Group Shot of University of Tennessee Students in GuatemalaThe Tickle College of Engineering sponsored an Alternative Winter Break to the city of Quetzaltenango, located in the southwestern part of Guatemala, between December 14 and 21 of 2014. Attending the trip were Chirag Tailor, senior electrical engineering and computer science major; Luke Weber and Tyler Leek, both senior chemical engineering majors; Neel Patel and David Michalik, both senior mechanical engineering majors; Logan McNeil, senior biomedical engineering major; Evan Wilmer, freshman chemical engineering major; and Paul Barry, senior animal science major. Judith Mallory, TCE International Coordinator, led the trip, coordinated by Utopia Volunteers, Traverse City, Michigan.

Valea Screzii, Romania

Global Initiatives Group in front of Romanian StatueOn August 10, 2014, four TCE students traveled to Bucharest, Romania, for the Alternative Summer Break. Students involved were Robert Minneci, materials science major; Kelli Grissom, civil engineering major; and Jon A. Jones and Bryan Eldreth, both majoring in chemical engineering. Judith Mallory, TCE International Coordinator, led the trip, which was provided by United Planet of Boston.

Mandeville, Jamaica

UT COE Students in JamaicaSix University of Tennessee students traveled to inland Jamaica, to Mandeville in the Manchester Parish, for the second annual TCE Alternative Spring Break. Five engineering students (from majors civil, chemical, aerospace, computer science, and mechanical) were joined by an honors student double-majoring in economics and philosophy.

San Miguel de Sarapiqui, Costa Rica

Students Excavating HillsideThe Tickle College of Engineering had its first Alternative Winter Break December 13–20, 2013. Six students made the trip. Pictured here, from left to right, are Amber Bassett, Jonathan Skinner, Courtney Humphreys, Payton Smith, Christopher Daffron, and Kangmin (Carl) Cheng. Students stayed with non-English speaking host families in the rural town of San Miguel de Sarapiqui, located in the Heredia Province close to the center of the country.

Cuzco, Peru

Nathan Siler and UT COE Students in PeruSix students from the Tickle College of Engineering (TCE) embarked on an adventure to Peru from August 10-20, 2013. The trip was concentrated in the city of Cuzco as well as in the Manu Biosphere Reserve in the Amazon Rainforest, both designated UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

Two trips organized by the Tickle College of Engineering (TCE) allowed participating students to experience engineering internationally during the spring of 2013. TCE International Coordinator Judith Mallory oversaw an “Alternative Spring Break” in Cartago, Costa Rica, and an end-of-semester visit to Madrid, Spain.

Cartago, Costa Rica

College of Engineering students traveled to Costa Rica in March of 2013, visiting sites such as the Santiago Apostol Parish Ruins here. Back row, from left: Avik Purkayastha, Vick Singh, Matt Lloyd, Faith Frye, Megan Ferrell, and Emma Hollman. Front row, from left: Victoria Vest, Kiley White, and Michelle Morin.Mallory accompanied nine students to Cartago in March of 2013 for service projects each morning and cultural activities in the afternoons. The group stayed in a small dormitory-like facility with a daytime staff, including local cooks, and a night watchman.

Madrid, Spain

UT COE Students in MadridTCE students Zachary Wood, Kevin Gayler, and Jason McDonald participated in the trip to Madrid, Spain, from May 11-18, 2013, at the end of UT’s spring semester. The Council on International Education Exchange (CIEE) served as the provider for the trip.


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