Getting the Green Light

By Sarah Chiang

The Grand Challenge Team’s research phase has officially begun! Recalling that the Grand Challenge goal has Los Angeles slated to use exclusively renewable energy and local water by 2050, the Grand Challenge Team has been preparing to interview professors. Equipped with a list of the faculty involved with the Grand Challenge, our team read up on each professor and their research contributions in preparation for our upcoming interviews.


This week, we met with Mark Gold, Associate Director of the UCLA Institute of the Environment and Sustainability, and Cully Nordby, Academic Director of the UCLA Institute of the Environment and Sustainability, to outline our team’s plans for the coming weeks. During the meeting, we discussed strategies on how to tailor the wording in our emails and interview questions to elicit the most detailed responses. While every Grand Challenge contributor is significant, we realized that in order to streamline the process, we must focus on interviewing faculty members involved with the technology for water and energy conservation and generation. Ideally, once we have this information, we will be able to create our database in hopes of connecting professors with undergraduate students working on similar projects. This may aid in making the Grand Challenge a campus-wide effort.

We will soon be able to contact professors and have interviews set up within two weeks’ time. As a part of the Grand Challenge effort, our team is excited to discover the various solutions professors at UCLA plan on applying. But before proceeding with our plans, preparation for our interviews is still necessary. During this time, our team will learn more about each professor’s research in order to take full advantage of interviews.