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ETHOS: Engineers in Technical Humanitarian Opportunities of Service Learning


Founded in 2001 by a team of engineering students, ETHOS was created to take engineering curriculum beyond the classroom, even beyond this country. Students who participate in our program engage in service-learning experiences and technical projects across the globe. 


Starting with just one location, our program has expanded gradually and has sent students to a total of 19 different countries in 4 different continents.


Over its lifetime, the ETHOS program can proudly claim alumni not only from all disciplines of engineering but also from all schools and colleges within the university.


Rooted in partnership, ETHOS works with in-country hosts that sponsor our projects, enable authentic cultural immersions, and provide local perspectives to our solutions.  

Please take a moment to learn more about us and see the opportunities to get involved. 

Learn more about us!


Working with Aprovecho Research Center in Oregon, Engineers in Technical Humanitarian Opportunities of Service learning (ETHOS) was developed in the spring of 2001 by a group of undergraduate engineering students from the University of Dayton. Our program was founded to promote the service-learning aspect of engineering through technical immersions, student activities, research, and hands-on projects. Since its founding in 2001, ETHOS has sent 242 students to 19 different countries, working with 38 project sponsors.

Through these experiences, students have gained perspectives on how engineering and technology are influenced by the world. Participating students have been able to use their engineering skills for humanitarian purposes, serving others through practical engineering knowledge. Our alumni learn about the world, different cultures and themselves.


ETHOS is rooted in the belief that engineers are more capable to serve our world when they experience opportunities that increase their understanding of technology's global linkage with values, culture, society, politics and economics.


ETHOS seeks to provide experiential learning through service internships, student organization activities, collaborative research and hands-on classroom projects. These activities are centered around the development of appropriate technologies for the developing world, both locally and globally. Such experiences expose students to alternative technologies that are based on science and engineering principles but have tangible impacts on improving the lives of those who use them.

ETHOS challenges students to think creatively and independently, to work as a team and communicate effectively, and to address several of the issues present in our world: appropriate technology, environmental ethics, social responsibility, and cultural sensitivity. Such exposure allows students to recognize the positive and negative effects of engineering and technology. Furthermore, it brings to light the responsibilities of being an engineer in our ever-increasing global society.

Where we've been

Over our 14-year lifetime, we've sent students to work with partners all around the world. The dots in the map below show all of the locations of our past projects. The orange dots represent project highlights from some of our most recent years. Use the For More Information tab to read in depth about those projects. 

Past ETHOS Locations

Where will ETHOS take you?

The students of the 2014 ETHOS class have all safely arrived at their locations. With 9 different placements, 31 excited students, and 6 new partners, this will be a promising summer for ETHOS. Take a look at the groups and their respective projects, and please consider making a financial contribution to support our program.

Domestic and International Service-Learning

In the ETHOS program, we offer a variety of opportunities to get involved. Throughout the academic year, students can participate in ETHOS club and semester breakouts, which focus on raising awareness about global issues through participation in local projects.

During the summer, students have the opportunity of experiencing an ETHOS immersion or summer breakout. ETHOS immersions are 10-week summer internships centered around work on appropriate technology projects (sophomores and older). ETHOS summer breakouts are 10-day trips, which give a taste of what the immersion has to offer (open to all students). 

Serve our world appropriately. Contact us today.

Candida Crasto
ETHOS Director
Kettering Labs Room 521
Phone: 937-229-3194

University of Dayton 
ETHOS, School of Engineering    
300 College Park
Dayton, OH 45469-0227

Gretchen Berkemeier &
Christopher Denzinger
ETHOS Graduate Assistant Fellows       
Kettering Laboratories Room 261 J