The Pothos Project is a five week program that allows students the opportunity to have real-world consulting experience. Students collaborate together to improve the sustainability of a business. For every week of the program, students will participate in meetings with both alumni mentors in the consulting field and local businesses in Worcester to receive guidance on possible solutions to their business’s concern. At the end of the program, students present their sustainable recommendation to representatives of that business.
As a student consultant, I have gained valuable knowledge and insight into the consulting field. First, I learned that sustainability can be applicable to different target areas of a business. For instance, while my team’s main focus is community engagement for our business partner, we are also working on reducing paper usage for ticket printings. Secondly, I have learned how to professionally connect with stakeholders and foster communication on what they wish to gain from the consultation. The meetings with our alumni mentor were highly beneficial to establishing a good relationship with our business partner as he gave us tips on how to converse with the stakeholder.
Even with the proposed initiatives implemented, the community determines whether the practices remain in place. If the business does not receive better profit margins, they might revert back to their old methods. Therefore, students can support sustainable businesses in Worcester by purchasing from these local stores rather than big brand names. Students can also spread the message about these sustainable businesses in the area to their friends and family. In the case of my business partner, choosing the sustainable option, mobile tickets, would show the business that sustainability is a concern that is important to their customers.
Written by Esmeralda Garcia ’24