A Goodbye From Our Summer Intern

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Kae Wang:

in.gredients‘ summer intern; photojournalism student at UT.

Hi there! I don’t know if we’ve been properly introduced. My name’s Kae Wang and I’m a photojournalism student at UT – that’s me (top left) with my handy reusable water bottle. For the last two months, I’ve helped get the store off the ground by piloting our Twitter, Facebook, and blog handles. It’s been great to have experienced the initial response to our store. I’ve watched you faithful fans help us hit our IndieGoGo Goal (with 9 days to spare!) and read every single one of your encouraging bits of feedback. All I can say is WOW.

This is my last post for in.gredients, and I want to give you each a big hug and thank you for following!

Before I bid you adieu, I’ll share some fun things I learned and a few behind-the-scenes secrets:

  • Sometimes ideas for my Facebook “curious” questions came from the most unlikely places. Example: My roommate was cleaning out our pantry and our apartment was literally filled with cereal boxes.

  • The most facebook “like” we received was from one of our readers’ clever quote on tomatoes:

Oops, mistakes happen…did you catch me?

  • Once I tweeted how we were $5 away from $13,000, but we were really $555 away. Guess it’s a good thing I’m a journalism major and not a math major.
  • Sometimes I would forget to link pictures in my tweets including this one: Solution to bringing home groceries when biking  <woohoo, I was able to to it properly this time

A sampling of the things I learned:

  • The guys behind in.gredients work non-stop. It’s a small, dedicated team working round the clock to get the store up and running.
  • We have the best fans ever. You want in.gredients to happen, and you have supported us from the start.
  • Always carry a reusable water bottle. If you’re like me and guzzle water like a camel, all those plastic cups you use eating out really adds up.
  • Reusable grocery bags aren’t just for grocery shopping!
  • Working towards a zero-waste lifestyle means “refusing” as much as you can. No more accepting random free stuff from college tabling.
  • Taking the time to shop, cook, and sit down to eat is an important habit to build NOW… yes, I mean it, right now, please start. In this fast-paced world, we need to slow down and teach our children and friends that organic, healthy eating needs to be a priority.
  • We only wear 20% of what’s in our closets. What a waste. When I moved into my new place I made sure to donate everything I didn’t wear to Goodwill. Here’s a tip: my friends and I like to do a clothes swap twice a year. I also resell my clothes to Buffalo Exchange. If you refuse a bag, they will give you a 5 cent token to donate to a local organization. Great concept!

In case you missed it:

My first entry on the blog: Zero-Waste Home

My favorite blog posts were always somehow photography related: Sprouted Kitchen, The Artful World of Food

My favorite tweet: Toilet Paper Roll Art

My takeaways:
Before working at in.gredients, I thought I was pretty health-conscious and environmentally aware. But boy was I wrong. During my internship I learned more than I ever thought I would about healthy eating and real food – emphasis on the word “real” – and how important it is to reduce waste. I remember when I walked into the grocery store a few weeks into my internship, I was completely floored by the packaging. In the past when I went to the store, I just thought, “hmm… where’s the milk… I need grapes,” but now all I see is how much unnecessary packaging there is in the store, and how much it contributes to waste streams!

This internship’s been great, even when I gave up shampoo/conditioner ;) Thank you again. Look out for me, I’ll be the first one at the door when the store opens.

Written by kbrotherslane

August 23, 2011 at 10:03 am

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