Friday, April 15, 2011

Range of Possible Community Projects

These are some of the projects that are emerging in partnership with community agencies.

USDA Grant Partnership with the Food Bank for Hunger Free Communities
The Food Bank and non-profits involved in HEAL-SLO, the County Health Department, Cal Poly, and the local farming and business community have received a planning grant to assess local hunger needs and resources, and establish a coordinated strategic plan to meet the needs of those who suffer from food insecurity. potential disciplines needed: Sociology, geographic information systems, statistics, Spanish, Agriculture, Nutrition, Journalism, Graphic Design, Economics, Kinesiology, Food Science, Dairy Science

Trial Site for Sustainable Living
A group of Cal Poly faculty and students are working with the administration to establish a physical site dedicated to testing permaculture and other alternative technologies. potential disciplines needed: engineering, agriculture, ornamental horticulture, agribusiness, biology, architecture, Art and Design, Food Science & Nutrition, religious studies, philosophy, psychology, anthropology

Live Classical Music in Public Spaces
The San Luis Symphony is interested in supporting arts education and culture. There is interest in creating the possibility of live, small but high-quality free public performances that enrich our community awareness of the performing arts. What would it take for this to happen? potential disciplines needed: art and design, music, theatre and dance, journalism, English, marketing, graphic communication, psychology, education

Aquaponic Development of Local Aquatic Protein Sources
Aquaponics is a method to produce aquatic protein and plant food sources in a symbiotic sustainable environment. There is a small interest group who desires to develop and trial local aquaponics systems. potential disciplines needed: Biology, Crop and Soil Science, Food Science and Nutrition, statistic, chemistry, sustainable agriculture, engineering, marine biology

Biochar for Reducing Atmospheric CO2 Content & Improving Soil Properties
Biochar is the product of combusting biomass. It captures and stores atmospheric carbon dioxide while increasing the soil fertility and improving its capacity to filter water. There is an interest group in further developing biochar for local use. potential disciplines needed: Biology, Crop and Soil Science, physics, chemistry, engineering

Gleaning System for the Food Insecure
Each year, tons of local food is left unharvested while tens of thousands of people in our community qualify for food stamps. There is a group of individuals who have begun to conceive of and develop a local gleaning system with local farmers to provide food for the food insecure. potential disciplines needed: Art & Design, Graphic Communication, marketing, economics, computer science, geographic information systems, engineering, statistics, agriculture, journalism, psychology,

Re-Skilling for New Local Economies
Within our community, there are elderly populations that posses the knowledge of preserving food, hand crafting clothing and other skills. These skills are being lost to emerging generations. There is interest in designing how we might learn these skills and create new local economies. potential disciplines needed: gerontology, agriculture, sociology, journalism, engineering, graphic design, political science, history, fruit science, food science and nutrition, accounting, statistics

San Miguel Community Partnership for Sustainable Development
San Miguel faces long-term water scarcity issues along with socio-economic challenges. A growing partnership with key San Miguel agents is envisioned to begin systemically addressing the long-term community goals through trial sites within the community. potential disciplines needed: Viticulture, engineering, agriculture, watershed management and hydrology, tourism planning & management, ethnic studies, statistics, soil science, political science, education, statistics

Latino/Latina Success in K-12 & Beyond
Cal Poly is surrounded by Latino communities, yet its student Latino/a population is less than half the state population. This group is interested in systemically working toward equitable educational outcomes. potential disciplines needed: education, ethnic studies, Spanish, math, chemistry, physics, statistics, sociology, geographic information systems, political science

Natural Resources Management
This area is rich with wildlife and land, much of which would benefit from greater attention and management.  For example, there are small bodies of water in Morro Bay that would benefit from experimentation with "living machines" to reverse their eutrophication. There is also a need to work with local agencies to enable fewer wildlife deaths through better design and management of human/wildlife habit intersections. potential disciplines: botany, biology, geography, engineering, chemistry, journalism, political science, art and graphic design, English.

1 comment:

  1. I enjoyed reading about the different projects on which the students participating in Sustain might work. I am impressed by the wide variety of possible projects. I have also been impressed by work that has already been done by local organizations in conjunction with Cal Poly students.