More than 160 first year students at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) will present their final projects from the "Great Problems Seminars," which feature issues of local and global importance, from 10 a.m. to noon Monday, Dec. 13, in the Campus Center Odeum. Topics to be featured at this year's presentations include projects on preventing childhood obesity; combating the rise of Type 2 Diabetes in Africa; redesigning the Worcester Regional Transit Authority and WOO bus system; building a "greener" greenhouse; designing sustainable renovations for some of WPI's buildings; and using algae as jet fuel.
With a generous gift from Eric Hahn, WPI Class of 1980, the university began a transformation of the first year student experience in September 2007. The Great Problems Seminars prepare students for the university's unique project-enhanced curriculum, serve as an introduction to college-level research, and provide them with a global focus. This year's seminars were "Heal the World," "Grand Challenges," and "Power the World."