Three student teams from the Virginia Tech Industrial Design program were recently selected as winners in the European Product Design Awards’ “Design for Society” category. Congrats to students who designed menU, Enrich, and Tuju Solar Water Still!

MenU is a reusable retail coffee shop menu, that uses a visual system of communication between customer and employee, reducing the need for verbal interactions and empowering the capabilities of deaf employees. The customer would pick up a menu for their drink of choice when they enter the store (coffee or tea), while waiting in line this simple system absolves the customer from order anxiety as they can be precise while waiting and pop out their order. The clear visual language then allows the employee to have an easy understanding of the order.

Enrich is a community greenhouse service forging lasting human connection and bridging generational gaps. Gardening promotes physical and mental activity that has been proven to positively impact our mood and health. Combining this lifestyle with an environment that cultivates multi-generational relationships is the embodiment of purposeful living.

Tuju utilizes solar energy and sponge technology. Tuju brings clean water to Haitian families. Tuju focuses on bringing clean water through solar distillation. Our design emphasizes accessibility, efficiency, and practicality.