Blog post 8

  1. List five takeaways from Guy Kawasaki’s talk and explain exactly how you will integrate that concept/construct/strategy into your project. Make it compelling. Don’t write generic forgettable text.

One major point I took away from the presentation, is that in these early stages of the project a true mission statement and some of the pickier details really aren’t necessary. He spoke a lot about how generic and not to the point many mission statements are, and I totally again. My experience with that stage of projects has always felt unnecessary and premature. Focusing on the team’s concept, and proving the idea is much more important in the early stages. Remembering to focus on the goal at hand and not small details will really help our team advance the project.

Another big takeaway was his point about finding soulmates. I completely agree with this. In my life, I’ve been fortunate enough to work with some really amazing people that pushed me to be better and do better. We played off of each other to make each other better and that environment was really crucial in making me who I am today. I find that the only way for an organization to be really truly successful is for the people in leadership positions to be friendly at the minimum with soulmates being the best case scenario. I plan to continue to build my relationship with my team members and create an environment of trust and open ideas. I’ve tried to make everyone in the group comfortable to allow a free flow of thoughts and ideas.

Another key takeaway, was his confidence while he was on stage. Guy demanded respect and the viewer’s attention when he was on stage, and that’s something I have trouble with sometimes. I forget what the name of the effect it, but essentially, when one doesn’t have much knowledge on a subject, they can feel like they’re experts, but the more you learn about a given subject, the less you feel like you know. I really feel this sometimes, as the path we need to take for a fully successful product is still unbeaten and windy. I plan on practicing presentations more and more to boost my own confidence, and that of the people around me.

A big takeaway from Guy’s presentation is the 10/20/30 rule. He stated that you should only have 10 slides, present for 20 minutes, and use size 30 font. This is something I learned about and taught when I ran the National Youth Leadership Training in Washington D.C. for a summer. Having the presenter ease off of reading the slides, and be comfortable with themselves to piece the bullet points together is difficult, but it takes a presentation from mediocre, to excellent in just one step. I plan on working in the future with my team to ease ourselves off of reading the slides and really being comfortable with our information and our slides.

Lastly, Guy said to flatten your learning curve. I think this is a really important concept especially since we will be developing our product in a foreign country. Eliminating extra steps, and making the process as simple as possible is an ongoing goal for the team. We hope to cut out baking steps to eliminate overhead costs and extra steps.

  1. In partnership with one or at most two team members, present a business model canvas for your venture.

Our business plan is currently very basic and requires a lot more validation with prices and operation costs that we can gather in Sierra Leone. At the moment we believe we can source all of our ingredients at a low enough cost, to produce each cake at 5.8 cents per cake. Or target wholesale cost is 10 cents, so this leave room for 4.2 cents per cake of overhead room. The team’s goal is to seel the cake to street vendors for 15 cents per cake, leaving the team a 5 cent profit off of every cake. Our current data tells us that we can seel the cake for 20 cents to the consumer, which gives the street vendor a 5 cent profit per cake as well.

Our current goal is to scale up the process to 500 cakes/day, which would give us a profit of $25 for all 500 cakes and would generate $25 dollars of income for the vendors per 500 cakes. As a team, and in accordance with professor Khanjan, we feel this is a reasonable goal to reach and would be beneficial for all parties involved. The children get the help and treatment they need and deserve, the vendors make a strong income, much larger than the average in Sierra Leone, and our group makes some money back to help us expand, and reach more people in need.

 

Blog post 7

1. List ten non-obvious assumptions about your target customers (or organizations) that you need to validate.

a. One assumption we have made so far, is that the children in Sierra Leone will be drawn to sweet potato cakes over other snack products.

b. We assume that at least for now we will be able to get sweet potatoes when we are in Sierra Leone along with the other ingredients we need for our recipes.

c. The group is also under the assumptions we will be able to find a local bakery to work at and use to practice our recipes. If we dont have access to workspace, working on the project will be difficult.

d. Another assumption is that the children will actually be able to eat our cakes. We currently believe that their shouldn’t be an issue, but we have to validate that.

e. The next assumption is that the children are willing to try a new idea and a brand new food product. We aren’t entirely sure they will accept our proposed solutions so validating that will be key.

f. The group is also currently assuming that street vendors will be willing and able to sell our products to a wild variety of children in order for the business to work.

g. Another assumption is that the food will be at a similar cost it is projected to be. We only have a small amount of data on the costs of food, so we will need to validate our estimates.

h. The next assumption is the shelf-life of the food. Currently we believe that the cake will last for a few days in a cardboard packaging, but we still need to test this.

i.We are also assuming that the mothers will approve of one of our recipes and will endorse us to other mothers and children to help the product take off.

j. Lastly, we are assuming that introducing this product will have a positive impact on the children and the country of Sierra Leone. We will still need to test whatever tangible results we can find to prove the impact we made.

2. List ten hypotheses about your project that you need to test during fieldwork.

a. One hypothesis is that the food won’t hurt the kids stomachs. Using high levels of Iron can be upsetting to one’s stomach so we must check for this side-effect.

b. Another hypothesis this that the food can have a shelf-life of 3 days in order to be sold to a wider radius. We have to test this idea.

c. Our third hypothesis is that we can find locally sourced foods for cheap. We believe this to be true but again, we need to test this on a large scale to determine if there is room for our product to grow.

d. Another hypothesis is that we are able to develop a program that can model Vitamin A. I plan on building a code using AMPL to model Vitamin A degradation to ensure our product maintains high levels of Vitamin A, as it’s the most needed micronutrient.

e. Our next hypothesis is that we can find a way to dry sweet potatoes at temperatures below 150 degrees Fahrenheit, in our to avoid Vitamin A degradation to sweet potatoes. We believe this to be possible, but given the small set of resources in Sierra Leone we may have to source from outside Sierra Leone to get that equipment.

f. Another hypothesis is that we can develop a process to mill the sweet potato into a powder so that it can be stored for long periods of time. If we can’t figure this out, our product will only be available for part of the year.

g. The next hypothesis is that the supplemented micronutrients will be bioavailable enough to be absorbed by the kids. We have to ensure the product is doing what it’s intended for.

h. Another hypothesis to test is that our packaging will be biodegradable and cheap enough. We haven’t decided on what product is best, but once we do we can choose a packaging that will be biodegradable and cost-effective.

i. The next hypothesis is that the mother’s will approve of our product. Sierra Leone is a country that follows a matriarchy, so the mothers approval for the product is crucial.

j. Our last hypothesis is that we can actually produce 500 cakes a day. We have to make sure we can get enough food and have a kitchen large enough to bake that much.

3. What do you think you bring to your team? How has your perception of your own strengths and weaknesses changed over the course of the class? Please be specific

I think that I bring strong leadership and diverse skills to the team. I’ve had many leadership opportunities in my days in the Boy Scouts and gathered valuable teamwork skills. I also bring diverse skills in my ability to code which is rare for a Bioenginner. I also have valuable past research experiences in Dr.Brown’s and Dr. Liu’s labs working on building codes to identify pollen samples under a microscope.

Blog Post 6

1) a. We will use less background information, as the panel has now heard that information and doesn’t need to hear it again.

b. We will practice the presentation more. Our group only did 1 or 2 practice runs of the presentation, but it could have been a lot better if we had run through it more.

c. Add more back-up slides. A lot of questions that were asked during the presentation, we had answers to, but it would have been better if we had a slide to turn to.

d. Add more continuity. The feedback we received, was that the flow of the presentation needed work. I believe more transition slides would help the presentation flow

e. Add more visual appeal. Some of the feedback we received was that the slides were somewhat boring and hard to follow. In the future make the slides simpler and easier to understand.

f. Have everyone talk more during the presentation. The reviewers felt that I spoke too much, and didn’t allow the other members to contribute.

g. Have the presentation be more solution-based. A lot of our feedback told us that we didn’t cover our solution to the issue enough. In the future, cutting out background info will help with this.

h. Stop reading off slides. It was noticed that a lot of the information we talked about was already written, and thus didn’t need to be said again. We will take this into account next time.

i. Use more figures. A lot of the comments that were given to us involved not having justification for our work. This is something we can simply do by adding sources on the slides and mentioning where we got our information from.

j. Finally, using fewer filler words would help our presentation a lot. Our group had to say “um” and “like” frequently which takes away from our presentation as a whole.

2)Our work will not require IRB approval for the first trip to Sierra Leone, as we will just do some basic sensory testing, and will be focusing on survey mothers about what they do and don’t like. In no way will be testing a “product” or “solution” in Sierra Leone. Instead, we will be gathering data. From my understanding of IRB, we would have to be testing a product in hope for a result and conducting some sort of an experiment. In no way will we be conducting experiments for the first time we visit Makeni. In the next round of visiting Sierra Leone, we will need to get IRB approval. The second time the team visits Sierra Leone, the process will require IRB, as at that stage of the project, we will be testing our product on human beings. We would hope to have a full product at that time and can begin to test whether or not the product has a positive effect on malnutrition in the children. I personally won’t be involved with the project at that time, but we would submit our paperwork for approval as soon as our product is finished so we know what is being used and what is being tested for.

3) Our inputs will include, money, employees, expertise from people on the ground and at Lehigh, a bakery and materials to bake the muffins, food ingredients from local vendors and markets, partners to help fund the project, and time from our team and myself to work on the project. Some outputs we are striving for are, a final muffin product, new consumers, new jobs, new training for the workers, more income for street vendors, and a final paper to publish our results. The expected outcomes of the project are much greater. We hope to embellish a culture of healthy eating, and just hope to get people to begin eating more sweet potatoes. We also are looking to address malnutrition, so ultimately, we need to fix that issue. Our team is hoping that our product can reduce the high levels of malnutrition in the country. More than this, our product can save lives, and help the children that are growing into adults to develop more properly and hopefully can grow to make changes that impact their country as well. We hope to impact every life in Sierra Leone, and eventually we can bring our concept to other countries as well.

Blog Post 5

1) To me, a perfect design process starts will nature. I have found that through my life both personally and academically, the design of everything tends to mimic nature. An ideal process for me starts with the things that you can learn from the environment around you. I actually took this into account when we first started to do work on the malnutrition project. We knew that we would have to first identify the available foods that we could purchase in large quantities in Sierra Leone. There is essentially no point in making a product out of a resource that won’t be available in the place we intend to implement it. After accounting for nature the next important step in my design process is always functionality. The product needs to be as efficient as possible for it to be a viable option in my opinion. I really dislike the phrase, “It’s good enough” because to me that means that the product or end result could have been better, but the people working on the product cut corners or were lazy in the completion of the project. After I’ve taken into account nature, and the functionality, then I move onto the beauty of the product. Now, personally, beauty isn’t important to me in most aspects of life. I would much rather have a car that works and gets me from point A to point B than have a Ferrari that breaks down every 5 minutes. I do, however, understand the importance of beautifying a said product in order to increase the ability to sell it by having more people desire the product. All life is attracted to shiny things, from fish in the sea being attracted to the shiny lure in the water, to humans wanting also striving for nicer and nicer processions.

2) We have been able to validate the concept in a few ways by ensuring the product can be made in Sierra Leone by working with Professor Khanjan and Jawara, a resource on the ground in Sierra Leone. In order to fully be able to validate the project, however, a few more steps must be taken in order to achieve that goal. A business model is another step we need to take in order to ensure that the product we decide on is profitable for all involved. It needs to be profitable for the employees we have work in our cake factory, it must be profitable to the street vendor selling the product, so he/she has an incentive to sell our product on their cart. Finally, it must be profitable to us, the team developing it, as the money we could potentially gain could go into more research and possibly an expansion to other developing countries. Another aspect of the project we need to validate will have to wait until we get to Sierra Leone. We need validation from the mothers in Sierra Leone in order to get approval to sell the product there. The culture in Sierra Leone is very matriarchal and mothers have the final decision on what they feed the children. We are going to do our best to be sure they like our product and in doing this we are contacting a sensory expert that can provide us with key information about the likes and dislikes of the people in Sierra Leone to ensure we are matching the common values that they have in their foods taste, texture, color, size, and smell. Once we are able to accomplish these goals, we can properly validate the project.

3) My philosophy of engagement with communities, partners, and markets is the same it is in my everyday. First of all, I was a Boy Scout for many years and eventually earned the rank of Eagle Scout in 2016. In that program there is a reoccurring theme which is “leave no trace” and the motto is ” Always be prepared”. These two sayings are what I live by and they apply to every aspect of my life. When it comes to communities it is important to leave no trace. What this means is that the only way people should know we were there is because of the positive outcomes we produced, and to leave to negative side-effects from our venture. This is really important to me because I don’t want to introduce new issues into a developing country just to cause a different issue. When it comes to partners and markets, the second saying comes in handy. All all of those interactions, I feel it is of utmost importance to ensure that we come into these meetings and relationships fully prepared so we appear knowledgeable and passionate. I find it incredibly unprofessional when people aren’t prepared for meetings and ventures, so we will be sure to have all of our homework done. 

Blog post 4

1) Nature has a huge role in how we design our products. For example, one rule of nature that always holds true for humans at least is that they are resistant to change. Whenever someone introduces a new technology to our lives, we are always hesitant to accept it. Whether this is a new food we’ve never had or a new way of staying in touch with each other. Understanding this is important because the people we are looking to help will more than likely originally be hesitant to try our product, or could reject it entirely. Given this situation, our team is investing its time into other potential solutions that address our problems. This way, if we arrive in SL, and the cake is rejected, we can invest our time in another project we have already started on, instead of starting back from scratch. Another example of nature influencing our project is by our team approaching this issue as a whole food approach. While yes, you can buy bulk supplements and just sprinkle them on your food, the best way that our bodies and all animals absorb nutrients is through food itself. The complex structures that the nutrients come in are better absorbed by the body, and for that reason, we will try to use as much whole food as we can, and only supplement small amounts. The last way we will model our product after nature is to follow the rule in which things flow through the path of least resistant, and that is how we are going to implement our project. We don’t want our product to feel out of place or foreign. In order to integrate the product into Sierra Leone’s culture, we want it to be similar to it, and thus follow the path of least resistant. Going against their ideas and values would be counterproductive. Following the example, they have set with what the like and disklike will ensure our product is utilized by the people there.

2) One of life’s principles is defined by entropy and states that the universe is always moving towards more disorder. I use that idea in my life every day because what can go wrong, will. I try to be prepared for any and all situations that might arise, and this was even ingrained in me as a Boy Scout when I was younger. Our slogan is to “Be Prepared”, and I live by that every day. This includes always having extra phone chargers in my backpack and always having a back-up plan for presentations in case something goes unexpectedly. This applied to my research as well because as an engineer, one must encompass all aspects in order to assure that your project doesn’t cause more problems than it solves and ensure that it works the best possible way.

3) When it comes to the cradle to cradle method, we plan on using the entire concept throughout or project, This is really important to us, as we understand that being in a developing country, it is incredibly important to not create problems when addressing our own. Even in my youth as a Boy Scout, we were told to always leave no trace. That meant that we had to leave the campsite better than we found it when we used it. Incorporating that into this project is incredibly important, and follows the idea of the cradle to cradle method. One way we plan to implement this is to ensure that our packaging if we have one, will be biodegradable or at least recyclable to ensure that our project doesn’t create a waste issue, as we address malnutrition.

4) One thing my friend Chase introduced to be which was a foreign concept for a long time was Jewdism. I grew up Roman Catholic and had really never been exposed to other religions. I was in the 6th grade at the time and he invited me to his Barmitzah and from there I attended his synagogue and learned about Jewdism. It was really great to learn about other religions from my close friend and we still look back to laugh it at to this day. Another thing a friend taught me for the first time was the concept of politics. I really never had watched the news as my parents had up until 5th grade. My friend John told me to watch a show about politics, the name slips my mind, but I learned about democrats and republicans and really about government in general. Still, to this day politics is really interesting to me and I like to stay up to date with the news. One last example of a friend exposing me to something alien was when my friend Ronak, senior year of high school, told me to try out for the tennis team. I had never played before in my life, but I figured I should give it a shot. I feel in love with the sport right away and would practice 4 hours a day. I eventually made the varsity team and I still play on and off to this day. I now also watch it on TV and love to follow the sport.

Blog post 3

1) 1 major stakeholder in our business is surely sweet potato farmers. Our product that we plan on making it a sweet potato muffin. We believe that the product will be more like a cake bite, or even a cake pop that the children will eat, but the main ingredient in the recipe is sweet potatoes. This means that in order for our product to be successful, we will have to acquire a large number of sweet potatoes. One organization we have identified is a small company working out of Western Africa called Ripple. Ripple is working to grow sweet potatoes in areas that don’t normally produce them. They are also working on a similar goal of increasing vitamin in the people of Africa so they will be a great resource and stakeholder. Another stakeholder will be the community health workers in the regions we sell the muffins in. In order to test the effectiveness of our product, we are going to have to develop a method of testing the nutrient values in the children eating our products. In order to do this, we will need community health workers to administer blood tests to check levels of the nutrients in their blood. This is a key step in our process and CHW’s are an important stakeholder. Another stakeholder in our project is Lehigh University. Lehigh has been providing us funds to not only do the research but also has helped to fund our trip to Sierra Leone. They have invested in our projects and want us to succeed. Besides just the monetary resource that Lehigh has provided us, they have also given us the ability to learn from some of their best professors, and use Building C as a workspace. Lehigh has been a key stakeholder in our project and is one of the few reasons why this is possible at all. Another stakeholder in our project is the children of Sierra Leone. The children are what our project is investing in, as we are doing this to help impact their lives and make them better by making them healthy. If we are able to make the children healthy, they can grow and develop properly, thus leading to a more prosperous country in general. We have faith that our project will make the lives of the people in Sierra Leone better, and hopefully, in return, they will buy our product and invest in our project. The last major stakeholder in our project is the street vendors in Sierra Leone. We will have to adapt to the market in Sierra Leone and will learn from the street vendors to help us sell more of our product. We also have to maintain the street vendors as a resource, as they are a key part of our business plan, and it will be very difficult to sell our product and make an impact without them. The street vendors in Sierra Leone are a key stakeholder in our project, and our vision of our product will change drastically without them.

 

2) One way we will be working to validate our process is by getting better data from our current resources in Sierra Leone. Originally, we had reached out and asked for market prices but in return, we got data that was too general and not specific enough. The data we received was results like, “20,000 leones for a bag of onions” or “10,000 leones for corn”. The data wasn’t able to convert into hard numbers that could be used in our software to calculate the approximate prices of our product. Another way to validate our idea would be to send our resources in Sierra Leone our finalized muffin recipe and ask them to make the muffins themselves before we get to Sierra Leone. We could then have the product be given to local children and mothers to look for approval from those 2 key demographics.  Getting feedback before we travel to Sierra Leone could help us make the product more attractive to children and thus validate our idea. The last way to validate our project is to reach to business professors to give us advance and input on our business model. Our team only has 1 set of eyes that have a business background so it would be helpful to get input from a professor in that field to read over our plan, and make sure that we aren’t miscalculating anything, or making the wrong approximations. The final resource will help us to validate the different aspects of our project and give us more confidate in our solution.

Blog Post 2

1) One example of a cultural issue that affects our project is the foods the people in SL eat. The people there have a very particular culture when it comes to food, for example, young boys cannot have bananas as it is believed to disfigure their genitals. Another example is maternal approval. In Sierra Leone, if something new is going to be introduced to a family, it must first be approved by the mothers of the household, so gaining their approval of our product is a must. The last issue that comes to mind is the culture revolving people’s diets in Sierra Leone. Sierra Leone doesn’t have access to the wild variety of food available in the United States, so creating a product that works as a solution to malnutrition is difficult as the food options are limited.

2) I have experienced cultural issues at home as well as in my research of Sierra Leone. Bethlehem has it’s own language when you are in high school here. Something everyone does is call their male friends’ dad and their female friends’ mom. It’s meant to show respect to that person, but it’s a little weird one you call someone dad that isn’t used to being called that. Also, being home reminds me of my Italian heritage, which means lots of sausages, and other meats, but being a vegetarian means that I have to turn down my grandmother’s cooking. This is very frowned upon in my family, and always results in me answering 1,000 questions defending my choices. The last cultural issue that I experience when I’m home is how strict of a household I live in. My parents were both raised under strict parents and they kept that approach when raising my brother and me. This caused issues when I got to Lehigh because that culture made me very calculated and quiet in social situations. A big part of my Lehigh experience has been coming out of my shell and expressing myself.

3) One way that we can use Sierra Leone’s culture to our advantage is their street food. Street foods are a huge market in Sierra Leone and can be compared to the ice cream man for kids in America, but they come around year long instead and instead of ice cream they sell little snacks like fruit, sausage, and bread. These street vendors are incredibly popular and we plan to use that to our advantage. If we can have street vendors sell our product, it will be dispersed to children around Sierra Leone, so we get kids to both eat them, and spread the word. Another thing we can leverage is that maternal approval I mentioned earlier. If we are able to get the mothers onboard with our product, the news of our food will spread through conversations, and once the mothers promote our product, it will be easy to sell them to kids all over Sierra Leone. The last thing we are going to leverage in Sierra Leone is the cheap labor. The average income of someone in Sierra Leone is $2/day, so we will be able to hire skilled workers to make our product for a low cost, which means we can also sell them at a low cost. If we were to try to make them in the U.S. we would run up a high cost from the labor, but the labor cost in Sierra Leone will help us make the product accessible for everyone.

4) Creating this product to be grown, made, and sold in Sierra Leone comes with a set of challenges besides that of culture. The primary food that is consumed in Sierra Leone is rice, which has little to no nutritional value besides calories. Our job is to train the people there to try new things and experience a different side of food, but if humans are anything, they are resistant to change, and this only gets stronger in a place like Africa. Trying to open the people to new food will serve to be a great challenge. Another issue is the lack of large healthcare systems in Sierra Leone. There is only 1 doctor per 50,000 people in SL, so being able to measure the results of our test will prove difficult, as, without a doctor or medical equipment for lab tests, it can be hard to determine whether or not our product is actually making an impact. The last difficulty is the lack of infrastructure. There aren’t many roads like those in the U.S. so transporting goods can tend to be difficult and challenging. This is one aspect of the project we are beginning to look into now.

5) The African context also benefits us in a few ways as well. There isn’t an FDA program that is to the scale of our in the U.S., so it is much easier to bring new products such as ours to the market. This will hopefully allow us to start making an impact on the people there in a quick manner so that those in need can get our help. I mentioned before the street food market that is so prevalent in Sierra Leone. That is another aspect of the African context that will allow us to reach more people in rural areas, compared to the U.S. where we would be fighting for shelf space in stores, and that’s only after we would have to sell the product online at first. It will be much easier to spread our food in villages in Sierra Leone, than a town in the U.S. The last point was also made previously but is such a huge benefit, I had to mention it again. The labor in Sierra Leone is much cheaper than that in the U.S. and will allow us to keep the costs of such a product minimal to ensure that both the producers of our street food and the ones selling it can both be profitable which will encourage them to keep selling our food. This is a key factor in the businnes model of our food, and wouldn’t be possible without the context of Africa.

 

Blog 1

1.) The reason I enrolled in this course starts with a good friend of mine, Naakesh. At the beginning of the fall 2018 semester, Naakesh told me that there was an opportunity to do some research and that I should check it out, so I emailed Professor Herz and was invited to the join to course. At the time all I knew was that it was research but Naakesh told me that it was so much more than that, and I learned that for myself over the course of this past semester. It’s great to be apart of a program this isn’t focused on memorizing terms, or learning formulas, the course is focused on helping students make an impact in that field. The course allows us to make visible progress every week and adjust it and learn from our mistakes. The reason I wanted to continue taking this course and pursue the fellowship comes down to a few things. The biggest one being the ability to interact with the people we are trying to help. Approaching problems that are affecting people in different regions of the world is difficult due to the lack of understanding that region’s culture. This program allows the students to follow through with a project and deliver it to the people that need it most, and then learn from them to improve the product and their quality of life. But it was Naakesh’s words are what put over the edge and made me fully committed. Naakesh told me that the program changed his life, and seeing another culture in that light, and then being able to help, changed his entire outlook on the world and that the work he did will help change their outlook at the world too.

 

2.) I see this course helping my career as an engineer in a few different ways, the biggest being the ability to start on a project from its conception, and being able to see it through for hopefully a full 2 years. Throughout college, we learn different material, everything from thermodynamics, to biology, to economics, but rarely are we able to apply those subjects to the real world, and especially apply them to the fields we want to purpose after college. This experience will supply me with invaluable experience is working on an engineering project that will be helpful when I’m applying to graduate school, and when I’m looking for a job after that. Another reason this course will benefit me in the long term is that of the leadership experience and knowledge that I will gain from leading a team of my peers. In the future, I hope to get my doctorate in bioengineering and hopefully lead a group on a cancer research team. I’ve wanted to do that since I was in the seventh grade, and the experience that I gain through this course will help me achieve that goal. Another reason this course will help make me a better engineer is because of the mentors that help teach this course. Professor Kahnjan has already taught our groups about all the different aspects of a project an engineer must consider when developing said project. There are so many different factors that must be accounted for, and many of them were things I had never considered before. Professor Lori Herz has also been an excellence advisor for the project and has taught our group a lot about how to develop an idea and adjust when things don’t go as planned. I look forward to learning more from both of them over the course of the next semesters.

 

3.) The first step to addressing that problem, of course, is being able to provide glasses in the first place. For this, I would propose setting up a collection system, in which we either are donated or buy back old glasses for a fraction of the cost. Of course, we would also collect the prescription to later match with their new owners. The next step is being able to prescribe the glasses to the people that need them. For that, a portable optometrist tool would have to be developed in order to provide the ability to give a point of care test. Locals would be trained on how to use the tool and could begin selling glasses at a reasonable price, to both provide affordable eyewear and jobs for people throughout Kenya. Of course, more advanced prescriptions would be needed for people with more advanced eye issues, but the people that need more general eyeglasses would be able to be helped, and a large portion of the problem could be addressed.