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Re-Imagine Learning: Community Empathy

Additional part to the previously posted idea: An app, providing a platform for the community to show their empathy.

Photo of Aakar Mehra
3 2

Written by

I am a.....

  • Student
  • Coach, ex-teacher, engineer, ideator, designer.

Tell us about your idea

Community always plays a crucial role for the place that we create for our younger generation. In a city or suburb or a small town, the value of the community is always seen as they have empathy towards each other. 

Building on that idea, we can create an App that allows members of the community to log in and post about their old laptops, computers, phones, modems, tools, instruments, etc. that they/their family doesn't need anymore. Many households either donate or throw away some of the older equipment to keep up with the latest technologies. This will allow students in and around the same area to check for available equipment that are in need of. The app would let people either borrow the item or give it for no cost. 

In these times any surface/item that is touched by multiple people should be sanitized before and after use. As a part of the creating a post on the app for an item or returning an item, there will be a checklist for sanitizing items. In addition the app can provide links to good YouTube videos for proper technique.

Delivery/Pick-up of the item are definitely something to be careful with. To try to keep people socially distant from each other, the best solution would be to make a common place as a delivery/pick-up location. One option is to use some school buildings that are closed these days, we can use one of the easily accessible rooms (school authorities need to be involved) and schedule a delivery time on the app for the community member. Another option could be a grocery store counter. Once delivered, the item will be kept there for a day and then the requestor can schedule a pick up time on the app. The app can be a common place to make sure the only one member is scheduled to go at that time slot to avoid cross contamination. This would also resolve any safety concerns people might have about potential strangers coming to their house to pick up things.

The same App can also allow small industries or big companies to post regular items in bulk. This could be useful for smaller schools or families that have multiple children but not enough remote learning platforms. 

What part(s) of the pre-COVID school system do you wish to leave in the past? Why?

In the pre-COVID school system, the equipment and gadgets are generally bought by the school and we never had a platform where we can provide infrastructure items to students directly.

Tell us a little bit about yourself and what inspired you to share this idea.

I am a research engineer, a sport team coach, used to be a part time teacher and I am always interested in learning new techniques and skills (student). In my early education life in India, I was never interested in learning anything and now since I have realized what all learning can be and do for me, I feel that we need to re-imagine the education system to ensure creativity and skill development.

What region are you located in?

  • North America

Where are you located?

Ypsilanti, MI. It is a small college town with great community and a lot of students. It is right next to Ann Arbor.


Join the conversation:

Photo of Sarah Nethan

Hi Aakar Mehra 
Love how your idea has bloomed over the past few weeks!

With the deadline for the Ideas submissions approaching quickly on May 26, I would love for you to update your submission with any additional information (eg. reflections, feedback received, questions answered, etc here in the comments), to ensure that all of your insights are well captured for our evaluators. You can edit your post by hitting the Edit Contribution button at the top of your post.

Thank you and good luck!

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