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NIU student climbs Mt. Kilimanjaro

June 6, 2011

Northern Illinois University engineering student Alan Hurt recently completed a successful climb of Mt. Kilimanjaro, the highest peak in Africa.

NIU student Alan Hurt reaches the top of Mt. Kilimanjaro.

NIU student Alan Hurt reaches the top of Mt. Kilimanjaro.

His six-day trek up the mountain began in lush jungles, but quickly turned into an arduous affair that include a bout of food poisoning and a temperature at the summit of a bitter minus 4 Fahrenheit.  The story of his climb is chronicled in his blog Planes, Trains and Africa.

Alan HurtHurt undertook the climb as a fundraiser for a school in Africa for girls who have been orphaned by the AIDS epidemic.  Hurt’s climb is the current subject of his blog Planes, Trains and Africa. Donations can be made online  through the Sango Association.

The climb is just the first facet of a summer-long trip to Africa during which Hurt also will conduct research on fuel-efficient cook stoves as part of an independent study project and will meet up with fellow members of the NIU chapter of Engineers Without Borders to plan the construction of a solar-powered cooking system for a school in Tanzania in December.

Hurt, a senior studying Industrial and Systems Engineering and Mechanical Engineering in NIU’s College of Engineering and Engineering Technology.