School is back in session and although the carefree days of summer break are long behind us, we think that the best way to gear up for the new school year is by reflecting on the last, and taking stock of all the positive experiences and goals we accomplished.
With several Youth & Education focused programs the ERA runs every year (Scholarship Competition, ERA Kids Poster, Workshops) we are privileged to be a part of the learning journey of many young minds.
The story we are sharing today is about a Winnipeg 10 grade student internship with the ERA, which ended with an astonishing outcome- a moment where all the jigsaw pieces fall perfectly into place… and a local school getting a useful addition to their IT inventory as a result!
Anchit is a student of MET Exchange – a Seven Oaks School District school that follows a distinct program founded on the Big Picture Learning philosophy. In the words of Ms. Ringer, an advisor at the Met Exchange:
Met Schools are guided by three important components: relationships, relevance, and rigour. Students learn through internships twice a week where they establish a connection and build a relationship with experts working in a field of interest to the student. When students are doing work that is relevant, often with a real application and audience, they work hard at it, they choose to complete tasks in order to make progress on their project, they lose track of time and get caught up in what they are doing. That is where the rigour comes in.
As a youngster with a passion for IT he was curious about the topic of planned obsolescence in IT technology production and computer design. That led him to develop interest in the issue of electronic waste and recycling. Deciding he will base his school project on this topic, he became a regular visitor to the ERA Winnipeg depot, and a helping hand to our local operations manager in sorting through the piles of discarded computers, monitors, laptops, servers, peripheral equipment and electronic bits and bobs.
Getting familiar with the screening and selection of productive computers and IT devices from scrap wasn’t the only thing he enjoyed in his time with the ERA. He highlights the importance of educating others on responsibility to reduce e-waste with proper electronic recycling process. To put his knowledge to test, he organized a collection event at the Exchange District and soon had a partner joining him with a second electronic recycling drive at the Met Maples school location.
In just a few days they collected over 70 individual devices and 600lb of e-waste in total!
As a true reuse master, Anchit would not let a good reuse opportunity go to waste. On the last day of school (and his internship) he recognized that there could be more to a large grey dusty cart that has been sitting on our warehouse floor. Identifying that the chromebook cart can be used at his school to store and charge student chromebooks, instead of being scrapped for recycling material, we quickly had the station transferred to its new home at the Met Centre for Arts and Technology.
If you ask us, this story confirms that passion combined with hands-on experience does lead to wonderful impact in the real life! We wish everyone a great start of the new school year this September.
If your school or business would like to get involved in making such compelling stories a reality- we will be happy to hear your suggestions and ideas.
You can contact us here.