Interdisciplinary Coursework

1. EOS 323: Landscape Hydrology

This introductory class on hydrology examined how rainfall and snowmelt become streamflow, evapotranspiration, and groundwater. Various hydrological concepts and processes such as hydrologic cycle and water balance, vadose zone hydrology, riparian zones, streamflow generation mechanisms, water quality are also covered in the course. This class expanded my knowledge on the physical hydrology and helped me understand the bigger picture of ecological and environmental issues.

GC theme of improving urban water infrastructure relates directly to this class. I learnt about how urban infrastructure affects the water movement in the system i.e. impervious surfaces reduces the infiltration of the water into the soil and produce flashier storm water in the streams and river channels.

Instructor: Dr. Kateri Salk, Nicholas School of Environment

Time: Spring Semester, 2019

Total hours: 7 – 8 hours per week


2. I&E 261: Social Innovation

This class introduces the concept of social innovation and expands on how this concept can be used to solve various critical problems in more effective and sustainable way. In this course, various social innovation frameworks such as theory of change are taught, along with discussions on social entrepreneur’s work in different fields. Through class assignments and readings, I was able to gain an in-depth understanding of how social innovation can work beyond the traditional boundaries of businesses, NGO and government sectors and bring lasting impact and change in the community.

Through social innovation lens, the issue of aging infrastructure in the US can be tackled more effectively and creatively. Therefore, this class complements well with GC focus of improving urban infrastructure.

Instructor: Matt T.A. Nash, Managing Director of Social Entrepreneurship, Duke I&E

Time: Spring Semester, 2018

Total hours: 9 – 10 hours per week


3. AMES 183: The Chinese Dream 

In this class, we discussed the phrase “China Dream” introduced by China’s President Xi Jinping and the discourse surrounding the topic. The class assignment involved lots of readings from different sources i.e. contemporary writings on the topic as well as philosophical and historical texts on the topic “dream”. I analyzed various films and videos to gain a deeper understanding of the narrative.

This writing intensive course relates to the GC focus of urban infrastructure as China is becoming increasingly urbanized. With the Belt and Road Initiatives of developing grand infrastructures in different countries, the need to develop sustainable and disaster resilient structures is very important. Learning about China helped me understand the global perspective on urban infrastructure and the direction it is heading. Learning the cultural context of these developments helped me understand the issue better.

Instructor: Professor Carlos Rojas

Time: Spring Semester, 2017

Total hours: 10 – 11 hours per week


4. Writing 101 : Students as Activist 

This writing class focused on social movements and how it evolved over time especially with student activism. The class composed of reading , summarizing and critically analyzing scholarly journal articles related to the subject discussed and constructing arguments based on the analysis in the written form. Some of the coursework includes critical analysis of two scholarly papers, media analysis of  news reports or blogs on an instance of student led activism and a reflective and analytical field report on student led activism on campus.

Although the theme of the class is not directly related to GC theme of improving urban infrastructure, the writing and reading skills gained in the class enabled me to be a better writer and a critical thinker. These skillsets will be used in producing detailed and analytical report on the GC projects.

Instructor: Dr. Amanda Pullum

Time: Spring Semester, 2017

Total hours: 9 – 10 hours per week