Design for America at WashU

Home page of Cubic, recipient of the DFA at WashU's inaugural Innovation and Design Award.

Posted by May 8, 2015

 

Founded by WUSTL students Alex Mei (College of Architecture), Libby Perold (College of Arts & Sciences), and Julia Kong (School of Engineering & Applied Science), Design for America at WashU challenges its members to use human-centered design to create local and social impact.

This marked the chapter's first full year as an on-campus student group, after receiving official studio recognition from the national Design for American organization in May 2014.

In fall 2014, interdisciplinary student teams addressed issues related to food access, exploring topics from nutrition for children to relationships between donors and food banks.

This spring, the focus shifted to upcycling, with teams undertaking projects that explored increasing composting, reducing waste during the student move-out process, and managing trash from campus events.

The chapter awarded its inaugural DFA Innovation and Design Award to the project Cubic, an online facilitator aimed at connecting students on the South 40 who are in need of storage with off-campus residents who have extra storage space.

The Cubic team—which consisted of Rebecca Resnic, Ananya Benegal, Eve Bobrow, Julia Kong, Mitali Avadhani, Taylor Tuteur, and Kelly Wisneski—spent the semester gathering user research from residents in the Pershing/Waterman neighborhood to inform project. They also produced a design and marketing strategy for the project’s website, www.cubicwashu.com, which is ready to undergo beta testing.

The team hopes that in future semesters, Cubic will become a dependable, affordable, and efficient means for students to address their storage needs. In the meantime, area residents and students are encouraged to visit cubicwashu.com for further information or email cubicwashu@gmail.com.