Success At Pitch For Progress
During the weekend of February 21st, the University of Guelph hosted the 10th Annual Universities Fighting World Hunger Conference. As part of the weekend, students were challenged to pitch ideas that could change the world.
School of Computer Science students Aftab Ahmad, Nic Durish, and Justin Gruber, joined forces with Food Science student Lauren Jans to pitch their winning idea - the Smartbin. For their efforts they were awarded top prize and $2000.
But what is Smartbin? The idea is simple - to prevent food waste on campus (or anywhere that food is sold) - simply inform consumers in a meaningful manner. For Aftab, Nic, Justin, and Lauren, this means translating waste into dollars at the garbage bin. The goal is to motivate people to only purchase what they are going to eat - eliminating waste.
The group first learned of food waste last semester during the 1st Annual Food Waste Hackathon.
"I had no idea that the problem of food waste was such an issue - especially right here in Canada. It really made me realize how big of an issue it is and shed some light on the main problems we face" said Jans.
Despite the magnitude of the food waste issue, the team has been working to fully develop their project as part of the ICON trans-disciplinary course.
When asked about his experiences, Durish added "Students can indeed make a difference."