As many of you know, I have an environmental studies minor. I've been pretty passionate about environmental issues since high school, and I've recently been reading much more about the environmental concerns of urban communities. Although I am not currently taking any classes for my minor this semester, I've been trying to keep up with current events in ES and staying informed on what's going on locally and globally.
Huang's lecture was actually a part of a lecture series facilitated by our Peace and Justice program as well as other campus organizers. I also went to the first lecture in the series, held earlier this month with Aziz Abu Sarah as the guest speaker. As a celebration of Ghandi's 144th birthday, a peace pledge was held and each part of the pledge was read in a different language by a student or faculty member. Then, Sarah spoke about his experiences growing up as a Palestinian in Israel. As one of the directors at the Center for World Religions, Diplomacy, and Conflict Resolution, much of his work revolves around peaceful approaches to reconciling conflicts.
I also attended another environmentally-themed lecture on Monday, when Christiana Peppard, a professor of Theology, Science and Ethics from Fordham University, came to speak to some SMC students about the global water crisis in the context of theology and ethical decisions. I was interested to hear about the Catholic Church's role in calling attention to the global water crisis--I have researched the issue for various projects, but I never looked at it solely through the lens of how religious groups have addressed such a massive ethical problem. Her talk was very interesting, and she brought a renewed sense of passion, decent sense of humor, and realistic approach to what can otherwise be a very depressing, very scary topic. I'm looking forward to reading her book, Just Water: Theology, Ethics, and the Global Water Crisis. It's definitely on my list of must-reads (it's quite a long list, but I'm determined!).
Anyway, I hope you're all doing things that fascinate you. I'm off to work on my homework and then attend a pizza party facilitated by SIT, my study abroad program. I can't wait to meet the representative coming to speak with us--I have tons of questions for her and I'm so excited about Morocco! It will also be really cool to speak with students who have traveled with SIT in the past. I'll be sure to let you all know how it goes!