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August 2021-June 2022
Project Role: Project Manager & Designer

Tools used: Figma, Excel, Illustrator, Trello

For my graduate capstone project, my team and I wanted to find a tangible way for people to make a sustainable impact on their own lives. We started from just the seed of an idea and grew it through comprehensive customer research, developing a complete business and marketing plan, and followed through with prototyping and testing our designs. We presented our product and business plan at multiple pitch competitions and were selected as finalists for both the Tufts 100K Competition and Columbia Venture Competition.

Working on this project helped me to develop my project management and design skills simultaneously. Organizing myself and four teammates to maximize each of our skills and collaborate to lay the groundwork for a viable business venture and accompanying product.

Preliminary Research

Key Questions

  1. How do people currently conceptualize sustainability?

  2. How knowledgeable do people currently feel about their sustainability impacts?

  3. What, if anything, do people currently do to lessen their environmental impact?


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18 interviewees randomly sourced across demographic groups with varying levels of interest in sustainability


100+ respondents gauging current attitudes towards sustainability against current actions

Market Research

Analyzing current market offerings to help users with personal sustainability goals



Consumers lack knowledge about the origins of their products and their environmental impact. Current labelling is inconsistent, and at worst misleading, making it impossible for consumers to decipher the impact their purchases have.


Currently, consumers must do all of their own research to understand their sustainability impact. This time commitment creates a major barrier for many consumers, resulting in many purchases happening without consideration of the environment.


Consumers often wonder if their individual impact actually makes a difference in comparison to large corporations. Because environmental effects are not immediately tangible, consumers don’t find it as compelling as other considerations such as price.

How might we empower users to make more
sustainable purchasing decisions by giving them access to information at the time of purchase?

Business Model

Originally, our plan to monetize our business was based on a freemium model, allowing users to upgrade their insights for a fee. We soon realized through talking to users that there wasn't a lot of motivation to pay for this service, and figuring out which features would fit into the premium version versus free version was very individualized.

We discovered that through using our platform our users would be giving us really rich data on their shopping preferences and sustainable actions that we could leverage to generate actionable insights into marketing for other companies. This would also allow our customers to maximize the impact of their individual voice for sustainable change-making.

In order for our business model to work we needed to understand both our target users and our clients' target customers. Through our research, we determined that a great beachhead market would be young, outdoorsy individuals with some disposable income.

Target User Persona

Eco-Conscious Emily


Emily works at a tech firm in New York City. Outside of work, she keeps herself busy doing yoga and spending time with friends. She loves keeping up with the newest trends and relaxes by shopping online. She eats all organic food and prioritizes sustainability. 


  • Shops frequently for timeless items

  • Keeps up with latest trends in fashion 

  • Compares similar items to find the best option for her 


  • Understand her individual impact

  • Ability to make decisions based on total information

  • Power to make her impact larger

Age - 28

Occupation - Software Sales

Location - New York City

Current Feelings 








  • Lacks clear information about what makes something sustainable

  • The most sustainable items are often the most expensive

  • Unsure how she can actually make a difference


Before finalizing our designs, we focused our testing in two key areas: what metrics do our customers want to make-up the ratings and what is the best way to display the ratings?​

Through a combination of surveys, interviews and A/B testing, we developed a clear picture of what our prospective consumers expected out of Nourish’s rating system in terms of level of detail and importance of different factors.

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I generated this list collaboratively with my teammate who worked more closely on the data collection and ratings generation, incorporating salient parts of our user research with the limitations of our datasets

Rating Display

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Color coding allows for quick-glance interpretation

Numbers give a little bit more granular detail

Final Designs

Quick tab shows on shopping page

Easy access to important links

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Numbers allow for closer differentiation

Shows quick metrics on all criteria

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