February 16, 2016
On 16 February, 30 students from the Civil Engineering Department of University of Juba visited the construction site of Freedom Bridge for the second time since their last visit in December 2015. The students first received one-hour lecture on the bridge design and the construction of bridge piers from the members of the CTI Engineering International Co., Ltd. and Dai Nippon Construction who are in charge of the construction. After the lecture, the students divided into groups, and crossed the temporary bridge to actually see the on-going construction work of bridge piers.
The initiative started when Mr. Norio Umeda of CTI Engineering International Co., Ltd. and Mr. Kiyoshi Kusaka of Dai Nippon Construction asked to the Dean of University of Juba if the students would be interested in visiting the construction site of the Freedom Bridge. "I wanted to do something to help build the capacity of young Civil Engineers in South Sudan. Then I thought of students who are studying Civil Engineering in Juba, and the limited opportunity they have to see on-going construction work. So we decided to invite the students to our construction site" explained Mr. Umeda.
Indeed, in Japan, students who study civil engineering often visit construction sites to actually see what they have learned in classrooms. However, it is difficult to find big-scale construction work in Juba for students to visit, and when it comes to bridge construction, Freedom Bridge is the only on-going construction work at the moment. Mr. Lemi Steven, a student in his 5th year, said "This is a very important opportunity for us because we can actually see what we learned in class, and there are some techniques that can be found only here in all of South Sudan. We can learn more when we see the on-going work rather than something already completed."
The construction of Freedom Bridge is expected to finish in 2018. Until then, CTI Engineering International Co., Ltd. and Dai Nippon Construction plan to continue to invite the students from University of Juba so that they can see the course of the construction work until the end. "The construction site changes every day, and I am still excited when I wake up every morning thinking of the progress I can make at the construction site. I want the students to learn the joy of construction through the site visits" says Mr. Kusaka.
JICA South Sudan hopes that the students who visited the site will be involved in civil engineering work in the future, and contribute to the improvement of infrastructure and to the overall development of South Sudan.
Freedom Bridge is a bridge under construction to provide a permanent route over the River Nile, and is expected to improve access of goods and services with the neighboring country which will contribute to the economic development of South Sudan. The construction is funded by the Government of Japan, implemented through JICA and constructed by CTI Engineering International Co., Ltd. and Dai Nippon Construction.
Mr. Norio Umeda of CTI Engineering International Co., Ltd. giving a tour to the students on the bridge.
Students listened carefully to the explanation.
Students had a close look at the construction of a bridge pier foundation.
Students crossed the temporary bridge to see the on-going construction work.