Engaging students in an integrated solid waste management program at a higher education institution
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Engaging Students in an Integrated Solid Waste Management Program at a Higher Education Institution. Presenter : Daniela Sanguino Authors : Mariana Ruiz Adriana Acevedo. A new approach to include environmental education among engineering students.

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Engaging students in an integrated solid waste management program at a higher education institution

Engaging Students in an Integrated Solid Waste Management Program at a Higher Education Institution

Presenter: Daniela Sanguino

Authors: Mariana Ruiz

Adriana Acevedo


Engaging students in an integrated solid waste management program at a higher education institution

A new approach to include environmental education among engineering students.

Focusing on a specific area of sustainability: Solid Waste Management.

Based on a series of activities to be completed by students in different semesters of the undergraduate curricula, engineering majors.


Sustainability

Sustainability

  • Human and ecological health, social justice, secure livelihoods, and a better world for all generations.


Why solid waste management

Why Solid Waste Management?

(Mexico) Studies on waste management:

  • U. Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM)

  • U. AutónomaMetropolitana (UAM)

  • U. Autónoma de Baja California (UABC)

    Studies conclude:

    Recyclable materials represent more than 60% of the total waste generated.


Why engineering students

Why Engineering Students?

  • Sustainability as a basic competence for engineers.

  • 80% product-related environmental effects: determined during product design phase, job of engineers.


Why this approach

Why this approach?

“Sustainable development should be integrated in the engineering courses contents, rather than teaching it as a separate course.”

It’s a Win-Winsituation


Engaging students in an integrated solid waste management program at a higher education institution

Main barriers:

  • Abstract or too broad topic

  • Lack of synergy among sciences ( because of curricula design)

    Students should be immersed in focused and regionalized sustainability projects in order to promote a meaningful and results-oriented experience.


Major advantage of the approach

Major Advantage of the Approach:

a) Doesn’t end up as a collection of independent environmental experiences.

b) Contributes from different perspectives and with diverse engineering techniques, to the solution of a single sustainability issue.


Our approach

OurApproach

IBERO & Solid Waste Management Program

  • - Recycling process

  • - Vermicomposting


Main objectives

Main Objectives

Include environmental topics within different engineering courses.

Teach engineering concepts with a hands-on approach through real-life applications and projects.

Reduce solid waste generated on campus.


First step

First Step

The lead researcher of SWMP & professors lecturing the target courses  designed the experience.

Define:

  • Activity

  • Individual or work teams

  • Results expected

  • Grading criteria


Physicochemical analyses

Physicochemical Analyses

  • Students : Chemical Engineering

  • Physicochemical analysis of compost produced on campus


Mechanical design

Mechanical Design

  • Students: Mechanical Engineering

  • Design of a food waste shredder


Waste quantification and characterization

Waste quantification and characterization

  • Students : Industrial Engineering

  • Design sampling process

  • Evaluate recycling streams


Environmental impact analysis

Environmental Impact Analysis

  • Students in “Environmental Impact” course

  • Studies on waste generation, handling, recycling, and composting systems


Application of engineering methods

Application of Engineering Methods

  • Students: Industrial engineering

  • Analysis of the on-site recycling process

  • Study work and time


Students feedback

StudentsFeedback

“The knowledge and abilities you get from all courses of Industrial Engineering can be applied all together in a project like this (…)”


Engaging students in an integrated solid waste management program at a higher education institution

Industrial E. student: “I think that the vermicomposting recycling process can be a good business in an industrial level (…).”

“I definitely support this kind of projects because of their philosophical basis, creating a sustainable world.”


Suggestions

Suggestions

  • Chose a case study that reflects the student’s reality and daily life.

  • Consider the engineering aspects of the case.

  • Think green.

  • Join forces.

  • Be time and effort realistic

  • Plan project objectives and grading criteria.


Conclusions

Conclusions

  • We need to find new educational strategies oriented to sustainability and environmental awareness.

  • Include courses (or experiences) related to sustainability in engineering curricula.


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