This week in Wicked Problems of Industrial Practice we read about different ways large companies should invest in people in poverty. I really enjoyed the example that Professor Armstrong showed us in class of a city that built “halfway houses” for people who could not afford their own houses. They built half of the house for the people and they were to finish the rest however they feel. I feel that this really encourages people living in poverty to do better for themselves. This gives them a starting point where they can only go up and they know that people care. If the government can support impoverished people in shelter, better sanitation, and jobs, this can take a lot of stress off of the environment and of course the people. I read the “Yes” argument and that basically stated that poverty does in fact cause environmental degradation and it also has a direct relationship. This side of the argument also said that good governance is the way to help this issue. When my group came together and discussed the Yes and No sides, we all decided that the Yes side was very valid. We agreed that good governance can help the environmental degradation by helping the poor. We also agreed that through helping these people, large companies can benefit also. Many people in poverty will take any job they can get, and by the companies allowing them to take the jobs that no one else wants to do, the company can fill needed jobs and the poor can support themselves. And when the poor can support themselves, you see less unsustainable materials being used and less waste issues because they can now afford good materials and basic needs such as plumbing.
The interaction that we are forced to have with the class has really improved my learning ability and understanding of the issues we discuss in class. I really enjoy being able to hear other people’s opinions on these issues and it helps me to be able to form an opinion myself. A lot of my peers are very educated on these topics outside of the readings we do, so hearing from them really broadens my knowledge. In my learning group this week, I was placed with one other Yes reader and two No readers. I really enjoy the way this is set up because it gives me knowledge to both sides. I am still weary to really speak up in these breakout rooms, but I have felt more comfortable doing so over time. This is not only helping me gain knowledge but also interpersonal skills.
The mindfulness practices during class have really been good for me. They make me slow down and be able to take a brain break. This week I have done a couple mindfulness exercises! Since class I have taken time to finish the mandala and I have used the Calm app before bed. The Calm app gives you many guided meditation sessions, calm playlists, and even mental fitness exercises. I think that doing these guided sleep meditations before bed have really helped me go to sleep faster and sleep harder. It takes my mind off anything I am thinking about and makes me focus on my breath.