This post comes to us with input from Sandra Black, working on communications for the Education and Research in Agriculture in Senegal program.

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A student tests the waters

A service-learning trip to Senegal was organized during Virginia Tech’s new winter session to provide an immersion learning experience for Virginia Tech students. The group of 13 began their two-week trip in the capital, Dakar, and travelled along the coast of Senegal, from Saint Louis in the north down to Toubacouta, near Gambia.

The group was led by three Tech professors: Cindy Wood—professor of animal and poultry sciences; Ozzie Abaye—professor of crop and soil science; and Matthew Eick, also professor of crop and soil science. The course is called Service-Learning in the Developing World: A First-Year Experience. While the course is designed for freshmen, not all of the participants were first year students. The students did everything from tree planting with Senegalese students to collecting grasses with villagers for silage production to helping out on a water purification project. Wood talks about the design of this course in an article about winter session here.

Photos can be found on our Flickr page, but here’s a sampling of the students in action:

3-crayfish, original

Students inspect a crayfish

Smelling Herbs

Smelling Herbs

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Brent speaks at a school

Tree planting

Tree planting

VT visit to ERA office, 30-12-13, Med res

Virginia Tech students visit the ERA office