An Update from PInT - Part 5 in Our Series: Olin Teams in a Virtual World

Even in the middle of a pandemic, PInT (Public Interest Technology) has been able to accomplish a lot this year including starting a new subteam and expanding their skillshare events. This is part 5 of our series on different build and project teams here at Olin and what’s changed with COVID-19. Today, PInT is our focus as we look at how their pre-existing events have changed and what they’ve added this year.

Over the last two semesters, PInT has been able to start a new hydroponics subteam which is an incredible feat with the challenges of zoom meetings and not having every member gathered in the same location. The team has a goal of supplying the dining hall with plants grown through hydroponics and have been working this semester on building the foundations needed to achieve that. PInT is even hoping to have a meal with everything they’ve grown sometime next year.

There are definitely things that have stayed the same or even improved from previous years as well. One thing that has stayed the same is the PInT Fellowship program. There will be 5 PInT Fellows over the summer who will hopefully be back next semester to lead seminars and community events then. Another thing which has stayed somewhat the same or even improved is the design reviews and skill share session that PInT hosts. Being completely virtual has allowed PInT to rely on the vast alumni network and expand the roster of people they are able to learn from. The logistics around bringing someone to campus are rendered irrelevant by zoom meetings which makes it so less time needs to be spent on figuring out who is able to actually be present.

PInT Virtual Club Meeting

One thing that’s changed significantly is when meetings are run. Previously, it’s always been that PInT would have a team meeting once a week with everyone present. However, similar to what we’ve seen with other teams, PInT has found it more effective to work and meet within sub-teams. After all coordinating the zoom schedules of 30 people is a near impossible task. They do hope to have some socially distant in-person meetings as people become vaccinated with the intention of hanging out and team bonding.

PInT has experimented a lot over the past year and some of those experiments worked and others didn’t but overall the team has learnt a lot and is ready for next year. Look forward to seeing more community events and projects from them!