A student from St. Clair College was awarded Young Tech Professional of the Year by WEtech Alliance for using technology to help waste management.
The winner, Trevor Ramieri, is a project manager for reVERT, a program that aims to reduce environmental waste using technology and collaboration.
“I’ve always been passionate about the environment, and that’s how it came together. It’s always been a labor of love, and I love what it’s done for me. It’s pushed the scope of what I believed I could do,” Ramieri said.
What won Ramieri the award was creating a five-tiered sorting station located at the St. Clair College residence. It added new areas for organic, plastic and aluminum waste. Aside from that, sensors in the station actively measure and weigh the waste inside. Data analytics student and team member Soma Sekhar Reddy Mandadapu also helped with the project.
This project helps environmental efforts in two ways. For one, the added sections of the sorting station ensure the waste thrown away goes into the right areas. This prevents issues like certain products ending up in the wrong categories or other products being made impossible to reuse due to cross-contamination.
Collected data also allows Ramieri and Mandadapu to calculate information like how much waste is thrown out and what times the most waste is thrown away. Both features ensure waste is managed effectively.
reVERT also attracted the attention of other groups beyond WEtech Alliance. One of these is Samsung’s Solve for Tomorrow Project Accelerator, which chose to support the project through mentorship.
“A lot of the mentorship they’ve been providing us has been how to talk about tech in a non-tech language, their insights from industry experience on how to market in the future.”
reVERT began as a program created by St. Clair’s Enactus club, a global charity using entrepreneurship to help solve society’s problems.
Ramieri also credits St. Clair College for aiding the project in many ways. This includes the faculty adviser for reVERT having previous experience in waste management and St. Clair students allowing reVERT to place the sorting station in the student residence.
He also said he was surprised to be recognized with a technology award.
“Even though I manage a tech project, I guess I’ve never considered myself a tech professional. When I came into reVERT, I was a passionate person who wanted to do better by the environment and the community. That’s all I came in with.”
Looking at the project’s future, Ramieri said reVERT is currently in talks with the ownership of Devonshire Mall to install another sorting bin there.
Beyond that, he has plans to grow reVERT even more.
“The next step we’d love to go into is the industrial sphere, and then maybe pivoting from there to something true to my heart, which is food sustainability.”
- Tyler Clapp