Our Method


“The significant problems we face cannot be solved with the same level of thinking that created them.” — Albert Einstein

Our pilot interactive program will allow 24 undergraduate students (12 in Los Angeles and 12 refugees in a host nation) to collaborate virtually in six groups of four (two USC and two refugee in a chosen country) to solve problems that directly impact refugee life and beyond. Problems such as food and water security, energy, ergonomic living spaces design, VR journalism and 3-D printing artificial limbs. We’re calling this program “Engineering Diplomacy: Fusing Engineering with Foreign Policy and International Development.”

The Engineering Diplomacy thinking process is highly desired for addressing global issues, such as climate change or the global refugee crises, where we need specialists with international experience, interdisciplinary knowledge, and intercultural sensitivities. We designed this program for globally minded students who aspire to make meaningful change in the world. Diverse, entrepreneurial students, especially women, who want to work on immediate-impact projects are especially sought out.

Each group will share one faculty advisor from USC and one refugee faculty advisor in a cross- disciplinary environment rooted in project-based learning. Students will learn hard skills of coding, design, and entrepreneurship and use those to develop groundbreaking social entrepreneurial projects.