Ancient and Modern Geotechnical Engineering

Location of Program: Italy      Year: 2016
Program Director(s): Norm Jones
Participating Major(s): Civil and Environmental Engineering


Students toured ancient and modern geotechnical engineering projects in some of the most beautiful and culturally rich locations in Italy. Site visits included the Vajont Dam, the Leaning Tower of Pisa, the water control structures in Venice, and various sites in Rome with a focus on modern geotechnical engineering measures to stabilize, dewater, and otherwise protect these ancient cities.  

Recap of the Year:

Leadership Development
This study abroad gave students the opportunity to observe engineering practices in a global setting. They earned capstone credit while traveling through Italy and came home with a better understanding of the importance of global collaboration in civil and environmental engineering.

Global Agility
Students experienced both historical and modern-day Italy, visiting the birthplace and current capitol of the Roman Catholic Church, renaissance landmarks, remnants of the Roman Empire, and important engineering sites across Italy. This trip specifically included visits to Venice, Florence and Rome.

Technical Experience
This program provided a unique opportunity for students to study slope stability analysis, soil dynamics, shallow and deep foundations, consolidation, and dewatering/seepage control in the context of some of the best known and widely recognized sites in the world.