In the video, Patrick Attié shows the destruction at the Faculty des Sciences, Université d’État d’Haïti and at L’Ecole Supérieure d’Infotronique d’Haïti (ESIH) just after the earthquake. He also describes how they are working on three fronts: access to capital to rebuild (an interim site), managing the transition so students can continue their studies, and rebuilding the campus itself in a new location.
Shigeru Miyagawa, chair of the MIT OpenCourseWare faculty advisory committee and professor of linguistics, describes how OCW has aided reconstruction in Haiti.
“Just one of the stories of OCW use that has moved me recently is that of Jean-Ronel Noel and Alex Georges, entrepreneurs working to bring renewable energy to communities throughout Haiti. Through their company, Enersa (enersahaiti.com) they planned to create solar panels to serve the needs of their country, but in their research and development process, they required guidance in electrical engineering. Noel found the materials he needed on MIT OpenCourseWare. “I was able to use the OpenCourseWare to learn the principles of integrated circuits. I found out that I could use an existing integrated circuit to make things more efficient, and I wanted an explanation about how it worked. I was able to learn this through the MIT OpenCourseWare.”
Enersa’s work has been supported by the non-profit Appropriate Infrastructure Development Group (AIDG). AIDG Executive Director Peter Haas describes how Noel and Georges leveraged OCW to build a successful business. “I was immediately impressed by [Noel], an engineer who taught himself the electrical engineering he was missing by using the free online engineering resources of MIT OpenCourseWare,” said Haas. “Also, after seeing the dramatic bootstrapping JR and Alex had done in starting their business, it was clear this team was different.” [www.aidg.org/incubation/enersa.htm]
Jean-Ronel Noel, a mechanical engineer by training, describes why OCW was his resource of choice: “It was much better than any other information I found on the Internet, since the other sites were written by electronics experts who assumed that it would be read by other experts. I didn’t want to just copy the circuit without understanding it. MIT OpenCourseWare was different because it explained things step by step. Using the OpenCourseWare saved us a lot of time and money.”
Through Enersa, OCW touches lives well beyond Noel’s and Georges’. Enersa employs 18 full-time solar technicians drawn from the communities they serve, and Enersa’s products affect the daily lives of thousands of Haitians. Enersa produces residential and commercial solar systems and solar chargers for smaller items such as cell phones and lamps, but their signature product is a solar street lamp. In just two and a half years, they have installed more than 500 of these in 58 cities and remote villages in Haiti. Enersa’s activities were briefly interrupted by the January 12, 2010 earthquake, but with an emergency loan from AIDG, they are back to full operation.”
Alain David LESCOUFLAIR, 3ème année, Sciences Informatiques (L3):
- How are you re-adjusting to your studies at ESIH? How do you feel to be back in the classes?
At first I thought it would be harder but I find it quite easy. I thought I would have problem getting ready for the exams and it’s kinda difficult sometimes to stay focus but it’s nothing if you know what you want. I’ll find a way and do my best. Focusing is not a problem. I just need a little rest. No one do really focus well after more than 2 months from sleepless night. I don’t have sleeping problem but it is only recently that dad accept to sleep inside the house and not in the yard because of a increasing insecurity problem. I’ve been the watch guard and going to school and not sleeping much doesn’t really mix.
I don’t really know how to feel about going back in class. I’m happy to see everyone, be in a group , maybe help around if I’m needed and also excited for some new classes but sometimes I don’t really know. I feel that somethings is missing and I don’t really know what. Well as long it doesn’t stop me, from being happy and from studying, it’s not a problem. When I look at the big picture, it’s nice to be back.
- Have your goals or dreams changed as a result of the situation in Haiti? What are your plans and how do you envision your future?
It’s really hard to say exactly. I do ask myself the question these last day. I’m certain that I want do a master 1 and 2 degree (maybe doctorate degree depending some life situations) in Artificial Intelligence. That’s the first thing I wanted to before I started.
I love creating, I love the new and exploring things, but now I don’t know if I should. I don’t really know if artificial intelligence is a dead field to study and I’ve been asking myself what I will come to do with it in Haiti. I realize, that someone has to bring new things around anyways so it wont matter to come back with a AI major. My problem is if there’s any other field that evolves creating and bringing the new. I don’t want to study things I can’t do anything with later. I always saw myself with a doctorate degree… Now I don’t know yet. A master 2 degree at least. I’ll know for the doctorate degree in the future. I’m thinking of finding a scholarship to help me pay for tuition and I don’t really care if I have to go all the way to Japan. My dad went to Germany and didn’t know much at all in dutch and still he did good. If he can, I can. Even if he couldn’t, I would have do it. Nothing can stop me from trying to do what seem unreal if I want to. People thought that making something that fly was unreal and crazy but the Wright brothers prove them wrong.
I don’t know in what field I’ll will have my master degree though. It may involve programming in it.
I also know I’ll have my own enterprise and with some of my spare times, I should do somethings with little kids. I love been around them and I discovered that when I was teaching taekwondo a long time ago. I should mix my love of kids with my love of computers to do something for them. That would be away to give back to the country I guess.
Dukens LAFAILLE, 3ème année, Sciences Informatiques (L3):
J’étais sur le balcon a coté de la salle de T.F.E., je me suis allongé par terre lors de l’effondrement du building pendant le séisme.
La reprise des cours est une très bonne chose, cela nous permettra de reprendre une vie normale, bien qu’avec beaucoup plus de difficulté pour réussir notre avenir. En effet, les conditions ont empiré. Je pense qu’on devrait faire le strict nécessaire à l’ESIH et réviser à la baisse la note de passage pour cette année.
Haiti est le pays le plus pauvre de l’Amérique, je pense qu’il est temps de penser PAYS avec Honneur et Justice, avec l’homme qu’il faut a la place qu’il faut pour un lendemain meilleur. L’ESIH est l’une des plus respectueuses institutions du pays qui aura toujours le plus noble des rôles, celui d’instruire et de former des cadres pour l’avancement et la reconstruction du pays.
Antenor JUDE, 3ème année, Sciences Informatiques (L3):
1- How are you re-adjusting to your studies at ESIH? How do you feel to be back in the classes?
Sincerely, it wasn’t easy for us to restart with the courses and focus on the study after all these problems adding problem of housing that confront us, the problem of electricity and so on… But when we know that education is the key that opens all the doors we have decided to start over. we started to work in group, we help each order by sharing our knowlegde. the homeless set themselves with those whose houses were not collapsed. However, we are very happy to be back to school.
2-Have your goals or dreams changed as a result of the situation in Haiti? What are your plans and how do you envision your future?
Of course that all our plans have changed after the earthquake. we are confronting a humanitarian dificult other that we are suposed to solve, and this in the immediate. Our future depends on us and we don’t want to give up. we only require a little bit of coaching to continue with studies and that we can helpful to our country.
Nikenley SEVERE, 3ème année, Sciences Informatiques (L3):
1. How are you re-adjusting to your studies at ESIH? How do you feel to be back in the classes?
I’m doing my best to readjust my studies at ESIH. Now we are at a new address. Since the first day of class on March 15, 2010, I try to be always on time, I’m very diligent.
I feel that I become less anxious than before, and I realize if I’m alive, I have to fight to survive. For that, I have to study and to work harder than before.
2. Have your goals or dreams changed as a result of the situation in Haiti? What are your plans and how do you envision your future?
At first I was very disappointed because, in spite of my establishment which is collapsed, I lost my class’ materials, friends and so on. So I worried about how I could get back to school in the same situation. But after a few days of classes, I told myself I’m still alive, thus my goals or dreams have to be.
What are my plans?
- I’d like to pass all the exams planed according to my studies
- To obtain an education grant which will allow me to study at a great university around the world
How do I envision my future?
After my studies, I’d like to become a great computer engineer and also I’d like to be able to work, according to my knowledge in computer engineering, wherever around the world and why not, to start up my own business.
Emmanuel Willer CHARLES, 3ème année, Sciences Informatiques (L3)
Few days after the earthquake, I was lost in a world with no hope. I was always wondering if everything has also collapsed as some buildings in Port-au-Prince. About half a month when from the radio I heard the director s speech about the re opening of ESIH. A wind of hope has blown in my heart. I am happy to be back to school because I ll have the chance to round off my studies and hope for a sholarship for further level. My plans are delayed instead of destroyed because I m still alive I still have the determination even if stuff are actually different. I am ready to toil as hard as I can in order to achieve my personal and collective dreams.now Haiti needs its children.so, I am also ready to actively take part on Haiti s development. I m ready to involv on new issues about technology innovation that can lead Haiti to an economic development.Inspite of the missing ways, I am ready to give a hand to education while sharing my knowledge to the youth.