Arizona State University Professor Seeks to Advance Engineering Education in Africa

In 1990 Terry Alford, a professor in the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering at Arizona State University, was invited by a former student to spend a semester teaching at the University of the Western Cape. While in South Africa, Professor Alford became involved with the Africa Materials Research Society, which provided him with additional teaching opportunities. Over the past 15 years, Dr. Alford has made 12 trips to Africa to teach two-week engineering seminars at schools and universities.

“Some of the students are brilliant but they don’t reach their full potential because they do not have access to modern educational resources,” Alford says. And some students do not have access to electricity or fresh water.

Alford hopes to accelerate educational progress by eventually making ASU’s graduate-level engineering and science courses available to students in Africa through the Internet. He also wants to interest fellow ASU faculty members in following in his footsteps and traveling to Africa to share their expertise with teachers and students.

Professor Alfred joined the faculty at Arizona State University in 1993. He holds a Ph.D. in materials science and engineering from Cornell University.

Dr. Alford with students at the African University of Science and Technology in Nigeria.


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  1. Ronald B. Saunders says:

    We commend you Dr. Alford for your excellent example of giving back to our African brethren throughout the Diaspora.
    Your deeds have not gone unnoticed for you are a shining example for all our students, faculty, staff to emulate.

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