Christina Townsend, Teacher at Long Beach Polytechnic High School
Lizette Tejeda, Program Manager at Junior Achievement of SoCal
William Bridge, CEO at Global Green
Jomar Hontiveros, Student at Long Beach Polytechnic HS
Mirei Takashima Claremon, Director of Behavioral Sustainability at Global Green.
In a collaboration between Junior Achievement of Southern California and Global Green’s pilot program Glocal Economics, forty-four high school seniors at Long Beach Polytech developed innovative projects that showcased the capacity for impactful environmental changes.
Designed to empower students from underserved communities, the Glocal Economics Program prepares students to tackle both local and global environmental issues.
Through Global Green, four JASoCal volunteers taught Long Beach Polytech High students about the interconnectedness of various issues through an understanding of psychology, behavior, and stakeholder needs. Students have gained a comprehensive understanding of the impact behaviors of both groups and individuals have on the environment.
The second portion of this program has been custom curated in conjunction with Junior Achievement’s Be Entrepreneurial Program. This is where creative problem solving, design thinking, and entrepreneurship take the forefront. By the end of this portion, students have identified key problems and are prompted to brainstorm products and services to address environmental concerns.
In the final section of the program, two classes of students developed a business plan and proposal that addresses environmental and/or social issues that affect their community.
The first project involved exploring Sustainable Vertical Gardens and how they could be utilized on school campuses. By involving student body gardening and recycling clubs to maintain on-campus produce, students concluded that both fuel consumption, carbon emissions, and cost could be cut when supplying food for cafeteria use. The students identified relevant legal proceedings that would affect the implementation of sustainable vertical gardens, such as:
– Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids act
– The Secretary of Agriculture
– California School Instructional Garden Act
The second project showcased Carbon Consulting and Electric Vehicles. Students presented data that illustrated the environmental benefits of successfully educating local trucking companies about Electric Vehicles and securing their investments. This conclusion is the result of findings that prove electric vehicles to be a significantly cleaner energy alternative to combustion engine vehicles. By making the switch, we could see a dramatic reduction in greenhouse emissions should trucking companies implement these new practices. It was noted that Truck companies spend roughly $37,250 on gas per year, while conversion cost is estimated at $6,000 in parts and $1,100-$3,500 for maintenance and repairs. It was also mentioned that Charging an electric vehicle generally costs 0.23 cents per kilowatt-hour, as opposed to paying around $6.61 per gallon for gas.
A group of Glocal Economics consultants is mentoring both presenting classes to establish local business enterprises around their projects, where they will continue to impact and serve their communities through environmental entrepreneurship.