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UC San Diego

How can we reduce the amount of food waste on the UC San Diego campus?

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Melissa Ngu

3 years ago ·

Melissa Ngu

1. Last week, we met with the Econauts, participated in our first trash sort, and gained the support of our dining hall’s managers. During the trash sort, we found that half of what would have been thrown into the landfill was recyclable material. We are also still collecting coffee grounds and communicating with the community gardens.

2. Next week (this week), we will be doing more trash sorts without the mirrors and some with the mirrors. We also hope to hear back from the community garden about partnering with another coffee shop. We are also narrowing down our scope and in turn, our “How Can We” statements. They are in the works.

3. One obstacle we encountered was simply the weather. It has surprisingly been raining in San Diego for the past couple of days, preventing us from doing trash sorts and delaying our prototyping. The other obstacle is waiting on the community gardens for a response about composting the coffee grounds.

4. In the particular dining hall that we are working with, the food scrap bin does not get composted at all and recycling in itself is an issue that became more apparent during our trash sort. This is causing us to wonder whether we should continue trying to compost food scraps from the dining hall trash bins or if we should try to encourage better sorting habits with just trash and recyclables before moving on to composting food scrap since San Diego is very strict on their 0% contaminant policy for composting. I think this will be alleviated once we finalize a more concise “How Can We” statement to use as our guide.

5. The high point of the week was finally being able to work with the Econauts and getting full approval and support from the dining hall managers to carry out our prototyping. The low points of the week are our impending finals and random midterms during week 9.

3 years ago ·

Brandon Rivera-Melo

3 years ago ·

Brandon Rivera-Melo

Team, can you add your milestones and team charter to the files tab in here? (you can use the link to the google files and that will work A-ok ;)

3 years ago ·

Melissa Ngu

3 years ago ·

Melissa Ngu

1. Last week, we came up with several different prototypes to implement around campus, held our first official general body meeting, and corresponded with multiple organizations on campus (Design Lab, Design.UCSD, Econauts, and the Bioengineering Department). We narrowed our focus to food waste on campus rather than trying to attack the problem from too many angles since it is very difficult for us to get off campus to do the necessary research. One of the prototypes already in place is a bag for collecting coffee grounds to use for composting at Perks Coffee Shop.

2. Next week, we will be putting mirrors up above the trash cans in on-campus dining halls to see if they will make students more conscious about where they are putting their trash when they can see themselves. We will be meeting with Econauts, another group on campus associated with the dining halls, to get permission for measuring trash in the dining halls and to determine where we can compost the coffee grounds if we don’t find a place on our own. We will also interview our friends and fellow students about their experience with separating trash in dining halls and record their responses for our video.

3. One of the biggest obstacles we face as a team and as individuals is our own tendency not to break university rules. We’re dependent on being granted permission from the university to go forward with our projects before going ahead and just doing them for fear of getting in trouble. We’ve already gotten permission from Perks to collect coffee grounds, but we are hesitant to start taking trash out of dining halls without meeting with Econauts and HDH for permission first. We have an appointment set up to meet with Econauts/HDH Tuesday morning.

4. Some big decisions we are making right now are whether or not we should continue prototyping without permission, and how much time and resources we should spend on each prototype.

5. A low point of the week was the low turnout at our first general body meeting. We are brainstorming ways to incentivize students to come out to our meetings in the future and to make sure they can find our meeting room. A high point of the week was getting approval from Perks and beginning to collect coffee grounds as one of our prototypes. We are very excited to see how well this project works and if it can spread to other coffee shops in the surrounding area.

3 years ago ·

Melissa Ngu

1. Last week, we came up with several different prototypes to implement around campus, held our first official general body meeting, and corresponded with multiple organizations on campus (Design Lab, Design.UCSD, Econauts, and the Bioengineering Department). We narrowed our focus to food waste on campus rather than trying to attack the problem from too many angles since it is very difficult for us to get off campus to do the necessary research. One of the prototypes already in place is a bag for collecting coffee grounds to use for composting at Perks Coffee Shop.

2. Next week, we will be putting mirrors up above the trash cans in on-campus dining halls to see if they will make students more conscious about where they are putting their trash when they can see themselves. We will be meeting with Econauts, another group on campus associated with the dining halls, to get permission for measuring trash in the dining halls and to determine where we can compost the coffee grounds if we don’t find a place on our own. We will also interview our friends and fellow students about their experience with separating trash in dining halls and record their responses for our video.

3. One of the biggest obstacles we face as a team and as individuals is our own tendency not to break university rules. We’re dependent on being granted permission from the university to go forward with our projects before going ahead and just doing them for fear of getting in trouble. We’ve already gotten permission from Perks to collect coffee grounds, but we are hesitant to start taking trash out of dining halls without meeting with Econauts and HDH for permission first. We have an appointment set up to meet with Econauts/HDH Tuesday morning.

4. Some big decisions we are making right now are whether or not we should continue prototyping without permission, and how much time and resources we should spend on each prototype.

5. A low point of the week was the low turnout at our first general body meeting. We are brainstorming ways to incentivize students to come out to our meetings in the future and to make sure they can find our meeting room. A high point of the week was getting approval from Perks and beginning to collect coffee grounds as one of our prototypes. We are very excited to see how well this project works and if it can spread to other coffee shops in the surrounding area.

3 years ago ·

Thasneem Syed joined the project

3 years ago ·

Robert Calvey

1) What did we accomplish in the last week?
2) What will we accomplish in the next week?
3) What obstacles are impeding us from accomplishing our tasks?
4) What are the big decisions we are making right now?
5) What was a high point and a low point of the week?

3 years ago ·

Robert Calvey

3 years ago ·

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