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OCAD U offers three workshops as part of Waste Reduction Week

Park design using recycled materials

Photo: A park design using repurposed and reused materials | Photo credit: Nour Abdulhussain

With Canada's Waste Reduction Week just around the corner, OCAD U’s Office of Diversity, Equity and Sustainability is offering three workshops to help students, faculty and staff learn strategies for using resources we already have close to home.

“The goal of the week is to inform, celebrate and participate in sustainability action,” explains Victoria Ho, coordinator of OCAD U’s sustainability initiatives. “In the context of the pandemic, we’re noticing the disruption of supply chains and we’re being asked to stay at home. So, the sustainability strategy of making use of existing resources actually overlaps with public health decision-making due to COVID-19.”

She points to the October 22 art and sustainability workshop, being co-led by Ilene Sova, Ada Slaight Chair, Contemporary Drawing & Painting and Julius Manapul, Associate Chair, Drawing & Painting, as an example.

“Through this practical workshop, students will be able to find out how they can use items within their own home in their creative practice. Faculty tell me that working within material resource constraints is an amazing creative incentive. Some faculty members have been using expired makeup and condiments like hot sauce as an art material,” says Ho.

“These interventions help us to question why we have waste in the first place. There’s a saying that there is no such thing as waste, only wasted resources,” she says.

Waste Reduction Week – Workshops

Students, faculty and staff are encouraged to participate in one, two or even all three of the upcoming workshops:

Oct 19: Webinar: Use it up, use it all! Autumn pumpkin & fruit preservation

Oct 22: Art & sustainability talk: Raid your closet! Raid your kitchen!

Oct 23: Student panel: Finding nine lives in materials for model-making

Campus Sustainability Month

Ho points out that October is also Campus Sustainability Month, an international celebration of sustainability in higher education. The goal of the month is to raise the visibility of campus sustainability and provide campus sustainability advocates with a platform through which to deepen campus engagement around sustainability.