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July 14, 2023

Evergreen – Joel Yong, BFA Industrial Design 2025

by joelyongg

It is crazy to think that there are only two weeks left of my Fellowship! As of late, I’ve been trying to pause every now and then to try to soak in the time I have remaining in Singapore. It’s not to say I don’t miss home in the States, but I know I’ll miss Singapore much more once I leave.

Lots have been going on! If you’ve been following my previous blog posts, you’d know I’m working on developing a national curriculum alongside Singapore’s Ministry of Sustainability to introduce students to the expanding green sector in Singapore. Throughout the summer, I’ve been exploring various learning styles and methods, and what we’ve landed on is a curriculum plan to be reviewed for implementation in secondary schools across Singapore, partnered with a gamified learning workshop that Terra will be able to host. The key learning objectives cover critical topics like sustainability and circular design and engage students with how we can reimagine more environmentally-forward, regenerative urban living.

Coming from the States, I wanted to prioritize amplifying local perspectives and learning styles as I went through the design process. Accordingly, I was able to host rounds of user testing to measure learning and retention rates, and it was such a rewarding process to see Singaporean students interact and learn with the tools I had designed. After each round of user testing, I refined and reiterated the various learning plans, and I am proud to say that I am ending my time here with a comprehensive and considered project that will help further Terra’s mission of redefining climate education in Singapore.

Additionally, I’ve been able to walk the Terra team through the foundation of biomaterials and biocomposites sourced from local food waste. In the previous blog, I mentioned that I had started experimentations with eggshells, and since then I’ve been able to develop a workshop guide that will help Terra further explore biomaterials at a more long-term capacity. Terra has many exciting plans coming up after my internship ends, so I wanted to be sure they had a clear understanding of the process so that they can seek how to adapt various biocomposite experimentations to their large-scale events even after I have left.

Lastly, we’ve partnered with Singtel (a local telecommunications company) to throw a large-scale public event to bring the community together! I was able to help lead their upcycling programming, in which my team and I facilitated workshops and conversations about sustainability and a carbon-zero future. Throughout the Sunday afternoon, we saw over 500 people and it was such a privilege to be able to engage with them on such pressing issues. The highlight for me was able to work with Singaporeans from all different walks of life – I felt especially excited about working with the young kids!

For the remainder of my time with Terra, I’ll be focusing more on wrapping up and handing off my projects. The weather is as humid as ever, but I have undoubtedly been treasuring my time here nonetheless.

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