Learn to design and build with the IDEASS community!

IDEASS projects take place at a variety of places in the Santa Cruz area and most are designed to mitigate problems recognized by community leaders as important to develop sustainable societies. Over the course of the year, teams of 2-4 students pursue projects that enhance their academic and professional skills. They also learn valuable techniques for working with professionals that will prepare them for the workforce and serve them for the rest of their lives.

Program Goals

1. Design sustainable solutions for the built environment
2. Build campus and community coalitions to design and launch new sustainability  projects
3. Prepare students to meet the demands of the 21st century workforce
4. Promote civic engagement within the Monterey Bay community
5. Increase interaction between academic majors
6. Broaden participation and retention in STEM fields
7. Train students to use quantitative reasoning and problem solving skills for sustainable design work.
8. Initiate changes that serve the needs of community.

Project Impacts

       IDEASS students develop project objectives within their areas of interest cooperatively with community mentors and experts in the field. Projects usually focus on sustainable technologies and practices in the built environment, such as energy, water, food, transportation and waste. Depending on student experience and partners’ needs, projects may use any number of approaches to address environmental concerns, such as technological innovation, education and behavior change, participatory research, policy planning, and other modes of sustainable design.