Harbel College Offers New Energy Curriculum

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The Harbel Community College in Margibi County on Monday launched a new curriculum, entitled, “HARCO’s 2016 Curriculum” that is largely driven by undergraduate interest in the generation, transmission and storage of energy with additional courses on energy policy.

The curriculum is interdisciplinary, extracting from the best engineering and energy-related courses that are not offered by other colleges in the country.

The four-year program combines mechanical, renewable, electrical and civil safety engineering. The courses are listed under the departments of engineering and energy, food, agricultural and environmental science and professional studies.

Others include information technology, agro-business, food science, disaster and emergency management, geography, Liberian and climate change studies.

HARCO’s president, Professor Syrulwa Somah, said the curriculum is a ground-up initiative driven by faculty, who are passionate about promoting interdisciplinary learning that is coupled with strong industry relevance.

“The objective of the curriculum,” Prof. Somah said, “is to produce students who are well-rounded engineers.”

He said all engineering programs address aspects of energy-related issues.

The new curriculum aims to bring about a mindset change, he added; and it emerged after rigorous needs assessments, reviews of current practices, and piloting of interventions – all endorsed and supported by the college and staff to ensure its smooth deployment.

“Programs in electrical, mechanical and remunerable engineering offer a rich array of coursework on energy generation, storage and transmission. The new curriculum will offer a single, coherent major in all aspects of energy, drawing primarily from courses offered in engineering,” Prof. Somah said.

He said for engineers to have a full grasp of the energy landscape, including the viability of renewable and alternative energy, and the balance between conservation and capital costs, they must have detailed knowledge of all of the possibilities available. “This degree is designed to deliver that knowledge,” he added.

Equipped with this big-picture understanding, as well as related policy implications, HARCO’s students will be also prepared to lead in the growing fields of agri-business, food science, disaster and emergency management as well as climate change and Liberian studies.

In addition to a comprehensive introduction to energy generation, transmission, storage and policy, course options are available in ethics, physics, mathematics and economics.

This curriculum provides the foundation and exposure to energy systems with the goal to produce undergraduates who are energy experts, said Prof. Somah.


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