My daughter is a sophomore at Rhode Island School of Design and she pulled together a team of Industrial Design majors to compete in the BlueGreen Innovation challenge in Rhode Island. Along the way, she added an M.I.T. senior engineering student to her team. They successfully competed and made the finalist round.
They are one of eight teams that will compete in June 2021 for the final round of the BlueGreen Innovation Challenge in Rhode Island. Shout out to author Padma Venkatraman who provided them with her insights and knowledge. You may not know that the author of many award-winning novels including The Bridge Home is also an oceanography scientist.
She worked as chief scientist on oceanographic ships, explored rainforests, directed a school, and lived in five countries before becoming an American citizen and settling down in Rhode Island. She has a Ph.D. from the Virginia Institute of Marine Science, part of the College of William and Mary, and did her postdoctoral research in Environmental Engineering at Johns Hopkins University. She served as the head of Inwoods Small School and taught oceanography at the University of Rhode Island.
When my daughter reached out to her for advice, she responded within hours and gave her advice and resources that helped my daughter’s team formulate their proposal. Padma told me that she supports females in STEM and was thrilled that they made the finalists round.
SeaAhead, National Grid, and the Cambridge Innovation Center established the BlueGreen Innovation Challenge to support novel approaches to interconnected challenges in Rhode Island. This systems design challenge will leverage a key asset in southern New England – its university students – to conceive and develop big ideas at the energy-food-urban community-coastal nexus.
Rhode Island’s ambitious climate and clean energy goals make this the opportune time for our next generation of leaders to think BIG.
FINALISTS WILL RECEIVE:
Mentorship and feedback from program partners and industry experts
The opportunity to pitch solutions at the Demo Day event, in March 2021
Prize money and public recognition
1st Place Prize: $10,000
2nd Place Prize: $5,000
3rd Place Prize: $1,500
Access to facilities at CIC Providence
Opportunity to work with project partners to implement solutions
Goals of the BlueGreen Challenge include:
Increase the availability of clean, sustainable energy in Rhode Island
Enhance sustainability of the Ocean State’s seafood system, from boat/farm-to-plate
Promote the circular economy
Improve community resilience: economic empowerment, health, and food security
Inspire the next generation to focus on solving problems that really matter
This is my daughter’s team:
Here is their pitch:
This is their final presentation:
Congrats to Team Scup (Zoe Lee, Caleb Calaway, Louis Hand, Geneva Casalegno) for winning the BlueGreen Innovation Challenge!
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