I attended the Curriculum portion of the Sustainability Symposium at 1pm and listened the the panelists discuss their new plan to advocate for a sustainable university and more well-rounded students.Tom Distefano (Civil and Enviro Engineering) kicked the lecture off by discussing some of the misconceptions our generation has. He stresses that we need to dispel theories like:  technology will solve all problems, growth can be infinite, humans are separate from the natural world, and other cultural assumptions of the sort. Instead of leaving population stabilization, GHG reduction, and conservation of biological diversity on the next generations “to do list”, we must motivate our students here at Bucknell to become technically-educated leaders. To do so, Tammy Hiller (Management) explained how we need our students to be environmentally and socially challenged in order to combat our growing population in ways we can solve our most intractable issues. She wants the new curriculum to nurture student’s ambitions and goals, and approach social relationships with each other without hurting individuals in  the process. Paul Susman (Management) gave his speech on Bucknell’s Brigade to Nicaragua and voiced that the trip gave students a way to see how communities oversees promote sustainability in their daily lives. This was meant to prompt changes in the lives of students after experiencing Nicaragua. To cap off the lecture, Duane Griffin stressed the importance of how the professors would integrate the sustainability courses .

I thought this lecture was extremely informative, and thought it was a great idea to take professors from diverse interests and use their fields to drive the point of how important teaching our students about sustainability really is. As a Management major, I appreciated Professor Hiller’s  analysis of the prospective curriculum. She proposes to teach students going into business how to understand the ways multiple decisions about sustainability  influence workers, consumers, communities, and the environment. With a background in legal and economic studies, along with business and sustainability courses, students will be well equip to take on any business career. Although it is bothersome that I was not able to benefit from this new program, I feel that Bucknell is headed in the right direction and am certain that the School of Management will benefit greatly as well.

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About Steph P.

Business Government and Society

2 responses »

  1. eric says:

    I agree, Sustainability should be a more integrated part of our education. Both “green” and “enduring” sustainability should be central to a Bucknellian’s thinking – though it is not. Perhaps a more centralized program that all students would, in some way, participate in could help the problem resolve itself. Perhaps, sustainability can bring all the disciplines of the University together for some events (required for all students) that could be followed up by Nature Trips (everyone has to go on at least one over their 4 years). This would ensure everyone is exposed to Nature and thus has a core understanding of what we seek to preserve!

  2. eric says:

    Then again, if the Administration really cared, the new buildings they are set to build would be environmentally friendly… Too bad the words and actions don’t always match.

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