The only way to summarize this post is to say thank you. Thank you to all of the amazing friends that I made in Hubli and on this trip. You truly made this the trip of a lifetime, and you helped me to grow personally. And of course, the fun never stopped! Every moment was made better by the students in Hubli.

One thing that I will never forget was how welcoming everyone was. I remember being exhausted after the long flight from Boston and the seemingly never ending bus ride from Bangalore to Hubli. However, when I stepped off the bus, a necklace was put over my head and a traditional bindi was put on my forehead. This warm act meant so much and really made me feel at home.

During the two weeks we were in Hubli, we made so many memories. The constant dancing, selfies, and singing “Cheap Thrills” are things that I will miss so much! Shopping and trips to the market began on the second night that we were in Hubli, and needless to say, we all loved traditional Indian clothing! Traditional Day was a highlight of our stay, as we were able to fully partake in Indian culture.

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Each day became more than just an agenda of things to do. We truly enjoyed and made the most of every minute that we were in Hubli.

Below, modeling the hair nets at Akshay Patra, the largest kitchen in all of Karnataka and making new friends at the market.

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On New Year’s Eve we celebrated by lighting (trying to light) lanterns. We were able to be a part of many festivals and parades.


Working on projects proved to be the greatest challenge and greatest bonding experience. From collaboratively strategizing on our business plan and practicing presentations, to going out in the community and getting primary data, all of it was very valuable entrepreneurial experience. For our market research, our group split up and went around to area schools to survey principals, science teachers, and students. I believe that I learned the most from working with my project group.

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There are countless memories like visiting temples, getting mehndi, trying new foods, and the last night in Hubli that we spent dancing outside. This was all thanks to the amazing people of Hubli. There are no words that can convey the amount of love and gratitude I have for my new friends.

“Danyavad” and “Mate seguna” –  thank you and I will meet you again.


Lessons from Hubli

One of the greatest eye opening experiences for me personally was visiting the all-girls orphanage in Hubli. The trip to the orphanage was one that our group had planned before arriving in India. The day of the visit, I was excited to meet the children and spend some time with them. I had purchased some little bags of candies that I thought they would enjoy. To get to the orphanage, I was riding on the back of a moped with one of the very good friends I had made. While driving we came to a crowded stoplight where we were surrounded by other mopeds, rickshaws, and cars. Through the mess of vehicles, a poorly dressed, tiny, old woman walked up to my friend and I on our moped and she asked for money. I did not know what to do at that moment. In the U.S., giving money to beggars is discouraged, but here we were and I knew this old woman had nothing. I fumbled around and handed her 100 Rupees as the light changed and all of the vehicles began to move again. As we pulled away from this woman, I became teary eyed. This woman had absolutely nothing and I had given her a bill that could maybe buy her a bag of chips. Instead of continuing to the orphanage, I decided that I was able to and wanted to do more for the children at the orphanage. A little over an hour later, we arrived at the orphanage with school supplies, toys, health and hygiene products.



The gratitude that the children had was small in comparison to how thankful I was for them. Collectively, they had reminded me that I can make a difference, there are opportunities every day to make a change, and it all comes down to you personally being willing to see and take that chance.


Akshay Patra

The first day of this program, students were split into groups and told to find problems around campus and to brainstorm solutions. This problem-solving mindset is something that I have been trying to hold onto throughout this program in order to learn more and potentially make a difference. Today the Entrepreneur students visited the Akshay Patra factory, the largest kitchen in India. My background and work experience has been in Supply Chain, so visiting this factory was something I have been looking forward to. Akshay Patra produces 1.6 million meals each day to feed children in public schools around India. In total, there are 26 kitchens throughout India that allow Akshay Patra to meet the needs of all the children.

Akshay Pakra has a three story factory. The top floor is used to clean rice, and then distribute it out to be cooked. The second floor is where the meals are prepared. There is rice served at every meal and sambar is also frequently served. The bottom floor is where the food is packaged up to be delivered to the schools. Akshay Patra has done an incredible job lowering its operating costs. Each meal costs $0.16, and $30 per year. While these costs are low, and many meals are produced daily, I observed some opportunities for improvement.

The greatest opportunity for improvements that I noticed was regarding manual labor. On the third floor, the rice was cleaned by hand in small buckets. There were three people using a constant stream of water to rinse and rub the shells off of the rice, and then pouring the water into a trough that would get rid of it. On the second floor, where the food was cooked, there were huge machines and equipment used to prepare a lot of food in a small amount of time. I noticed that there was food waste from when food would be moved between cleaning, cooking, and packaging. Also, once the food was made ad ready for packaging, an employee would scoop the rice out of the pot and into a trolley. There was a lot of rice remaining in the pot. The trolley full of rice then had to be wheeled across the floor to the vents to feed it down to the bottom floor. The food packaging was no standardized between containers. There was an employee who would syphon out rice until the containers were full, and then without stopping the flow of rice, push another container into place to be filled.

My recommendation for limiting food waste, cutting labor costs, and ultimately being more efficient are to buy or develop a device to scrape the sides of the pots, cook food closer to the vents to reduce time between batches, and to invest in an assembly line belt so that the distribution of rice will be more consistent between containers. img_9246img_9247