Engineering the Guitar from the U.S. to Colombia

Engineering the Guitar from the U.S. to Colombia

Click HERE to enroll in this program!


This 3 credit hour course will be a collaborative experience with students from Universidad Nacional-Medellin in Medellin, Colombia. Students will work together to build a guitar while learning the engineering behind the process. Students will also explore Colombia’s culture and will use their impression of the Antioquia region to decorate and create their guitars. This course is a new approach to the previously offered guitar workshop taught during the summer at Purdue in West Lafayette. This course will not only include the manufacturing aspects of making a guitar and the engineering and science of the electric guitar, but will also reflect on the art, culture and environment while building the instrument. Students will be encouraged to investigate materials and tools available locally and use those to create their musical instruments. Additionally, the students will work closely with local students from Medellin who will also be enrolled in the course. This will enrich the cultural experience of both Purdue and Medellin students and will serve as a practical method to contrast and affect both sides of the cultural perceptions.


This global experience includes class time, lab time and cultural excursions.  


Preliminary Itinerary

Saturday, May 25th

          Travel to Colombia

Sunday, May 26th

          Meet hosts and tour Medellin

Monday, May 27th

          Arrive at UN, get IDs, meet Colombian students, get guitar kits

Tuesday, May 28th

          Building interspersed with class work, Mathematics of Music

Wednesday, May 29th

          Building interspersed with class work, Structure of Guitars

Thursday, May 30th

          Building interspersed with class work, Electronics including Amplifiers

Friday, May 31st

          Building interspersed with class work, Quiz

Saturday, June 1st

          Visit Park Arvi

Sunday, June 2nd

          Free time to explore Medellin

Monday, June 3rd

          Building interspersed with class work, Virtual Tour of Guitar Factories

Tuesday, June 4th

          Day trip to Guatape

Wednesday, June 5th

           Building interspersed with class work, electronics

Thursday, June 6th

          Building interspersed with class work, final assembly

Friday, June 7th

          Final class period, grading of completed instruments

Saturday, June 8th

          Return to US


Contact program leaders, Prof. Jose Garcia or Prof. Mark French via email for more information.

Program flyer





Department Location Duration Professor
Engineering Technology Colombia Maymester Richard French