Desi Beardmoore stands atop a recently completed pedestrian bridge
Practicum student Desi Beardmoore helped design this Bridges to Prosperity project in Kama, Uganda
Ken Wallace and Caleb Cord tour a water treatment plant
Graduate students Ken Wallace and Caleb Cord tour a water treatment plant in Fort Portal, Uganda
Katie Chambers standing in a field with cut bamboo.
Katie Chambers on a field visit, part of a project that examined sanitation system resilience in resource-limited settings
James Harper reviews notes with others.
James Harper (center) participating in a sanitation workshop in Cambodia
Casie Venable taking housing measurements with local community members.
Casie Venable looks at how post-disaster, reconstructed shelters will perform in a future hazardous events
Amber Schrum sits at a table speaking to a forum
Amber Schrum participates in a knowledge-sharing workshop in Accra, Ghana

The Mortenson Center has cultivated relationships with a cadre of host organizations for the practicum experience including governmental and non-governmental organizations, consulting firms, and the private sector. Students are placed in well-established organizations for six weeks to six months, depending on their availability and the host organization’s needs. The typical practicum duration is two to three months over the summer after a student's first academic year, and the majority of practicum placements are international.*

Host agencies are selected to match the engineering abilities and interests of the students and cover a range of specialties including Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH), renewable energy, and humanitarian response.  Through its practicum program, MCGE links our students with organizations that have local connections and long-term relationships with partner communities. Our students learn from specialists in their sectors, further building local capacity to achieve resiliency and self-sufficiency. Some examples of our partner organizations are shown in the graphic below.

Logos of organizations that host MCGE students

*COVID-19 Update: Although the emphasis of the practicum is on an international experience, travel restrictions due to COVID-19 required that the Mortenson Center pivot to securing remote opportunities for Summer 2020 practicum placements. Similarly, the majority of practicum placements for Summer 2021 will be remote, with a few exceptions for domestic opportunities, following all COVID-19 guidelines. Students with a flexible timeline may choose to defer until the following summer. Students who already have international experience may choose to apply for a waiver of the practicum requirement.

Map of Practicum Placements

Our practicum placements have taken place in over 50 countries, partnering with over 80 country programs. Explore the interactive map below to see all of our practicum partnerships.