Skip to main content

Approved Student Projects 2018


Bioreactor Optimization (Student: Andrew Yen)

The project objectives include identifying suitable second generation biofuel, creation of process to breakdown of lignocellulosic feedstock into starches, fermentation of starches into ethanol, and refurbishing existing bioreactor to industrial standards. In addition, the students worked with biology students and professors that used bioreactor systems to ferment bioethanol. 


Boys and Girls of Zyon photo collage 

Boys and Girls of Zyon (Student: Lakisha Johnson)

UHD student Lakisha Johnson organized a two-week classroom session in summer with activities for children from ages 8-18 in Aldine neighborhood to teach them the fundamentals of personal development, hygiene, money management, food preparation, gardening, recycling and waste management at home and school, and how to be resilient in times of despair. The children planted flowers and plants in front of Monument of Faith Church as part of their gardening activity. 22 children participated in different sessions throughout the program.

Communities United for a Green Future (Students: Mariana Grijalva, Mariana Cano, Xena Orozco)

In this project, the students aim to bring awareness about air pollution contaminating neighborhoods in the East side of Houston with low-income, immigrants, and people of color. During the first semester, the students held an event at UHD to create awareness on how humans create pollution every day and the effects of it. During the event they conducted an activity to show what students can do at home and become more sustainable. In the second semester, they interviewed families from the East side of Houston where all the refineries are located and created a video over 10 minutes which was shown in the main hallway at UHD while giving away reusable items in return for recyclable items.

Data-driven Hydrologic Time Series Analysis and Prediction for Water Sustainability in Harris-Galveston District (Students: Trinh Bui, Cuong Pham)

In this project, students investigated spatial and temporal evolving patterns of water conservation via data-driven methods, therefore analyzing and predicting potential protection, evaluation, and restoration of safe and sustainable water resources in the Harris-Galveston district.

Native Plants for Monarch Butterflies (Students: Janeth Garcia, Daniell Wilson)

This project aims to increase the diversity in the UHD pocket prairie by planting milkweeds, nectar flowers, and grasses. The students also got the pocket prairie certified as a Monarch Waystation. To promote the prairie, the students attended workshops on Monarch Butterflies and conducted volunteering events for UHD students to highlight the importance of native plants to attract native pollinators and how to create a suitable habitat for Monarch butterflies in an urban setting.

Promotion of Compost Production (Students: Leonel Hernandez, Samuel Landaverde)

The purpose of this project is to increase the promotion of compost production and attract volunteers to help meet the needs of the compost center. Students continued collecting materials from the cafeteria, food pantry, and facilities management and monitor compost production. As part of promotion, the students organized a class on composting for other UHD students at the UHD sustainability garden.


small rainwater collection system

Rainwater Collection (Student: Rachael Vinson)

The objective of this project is to minimize water use in the UHD sustainability garden by building a rainwater harvesting system for the garden. The student worked with the facilities management to determine the amount of water needed for the garden and to design a cost effective and efficient system fit for the garden. The system will be maintained and used by all current and future garden club members. 


Fig. Rainwater harvesting system in the UHD Sustainability Garden 

Large rainwater collection system

Revitalization and Optimization of the Sustainability Garden (Students: Sergio Diaz, Sean Glen Wood, Victoria Valencia)

UHD students revitalized and optimized the aquaponics system in the UHD sustainability garden from a technological aspect. The students redesigned and implemented the control systems to make the garden run by solar power and therefore, making the garden sustainable and more efficient. 

Fig. New aquaponics system 

Solar, Hydro, Wind, Agriculture, Garden

SHWAG: Solar, Hydro, Wind, Agriculture, Garden (Student: James Adams)

In this project, student James Adams built a modular garden that aims to increase food production in an urban environment. The garden base/foundation serves as a water collection reservoir with a prop structured vertically into a wind turbine. Through modular assemblies, water collection reservoir will double as a hydroelectric turbine powered by the wind turbine. The student designed and developed a scale model of the garden's structure using 3D modeling software and printing.