Some of our recent Sustainability Initiatives include:
The Design Center has hosted several workshops oriented around sustainability. These include those led by staff using recycled materials to make new functional items. We led the Reusable Bag Making Workshop; Upcycled Tie-Dye Workshop, and Upcycled Crochet Bag Workshop.
Our Design Talk Series, inspired by Barnard’s Year of Science, featured artists and designers orienting their creative practices around sustainability. This included FIELD collaborators who led us through making grass-based bioplastics in their workshop How to Grow a Field? as well as Ana Mengote Baluca, whose interactive workshop Creative Circuits instructed on how to wire a solar-powered charger to a tote bag.
The Design Center sources sustainable materials and tools when possible, including recycled fabric from FABSCRAP; biodegradable 3D printing filament, and gently used equipment and materials from Rheaply, an internal reuse platform for students, faculty, and staff. Our 3D printing system includes a 3D Printing Filament Dryer and air-tight filament containers by PrintDry to extend the shelf life of our printing filaments. We added iFixit Tech Repair kits to our tool inventory. We’ve updated our Materials Resource Guide to include local vendors and green options. We also order materials from Barnard preferred vendors that meet equity and diversity criteria as minority owned, registered small businesses.
We have continued to support recycling and proper waste management in the Design Center by keeping organized scrap material available in the space for students to use, including textiles, wood, and acrylic. We recycle in the Design Center and participate in a 3D printing filament recycling program through TerraCycle.