The last and final blog post…it is so crazy to think that just about 8 weeks ago I came into this class with little to no understanding of the issues our world was really facing, and now I have a whole new understanding on ways I can help diminish the carbon footprint being left behind. I had absolutely no idea what a “Wicked” problem was, and no idea the light this class would shed on how much our world needs our help. We face situations everyday that put our world more and more at risk and in order to find the best solution we have to be able to understand the problem and analyze it from all angles. 

The learning community this semester was absolutely amazing. I think all of us were able to build on one another’s input and ideas, and it created a very natural flow within the learning environment we know as zoom. I am a visual learner, so being online has been a big struggle for me this semester, but with the interactiveness of this class and being able to work with other students has really helped, and although this semester was bizarre and not what we are used to I think being able to lean on each other’s understanding helped solidify my understanding of the material being covered. I really enjoyed the breakout rooms and working with my team on the infographic project. The infographic project was a fun and interactive way to bring more awareness to one of the many big issues in our world today. 

My biggest takeaway from this class is that of being mindful and practicing mindfulness. I guess I thought of mindfulness as a way of taking my mind to a different place to distract myself from what was stressing me out, and with everything that has happened this year I have definitely put mindfulness on the back burner.During all of this craziness that 2020 has thrown at us I realized I kind of lost myself, and with the mindfulness practice that we have done in class I have taken a step back and looked at the kind of person I am and the kind of person I want to be.

It is so important that we as humans are mindful about what is happening in our world, and we need to make sure that our actions day in and day out reflect that mindfulness. Thinking back to before I took this class I thought a lot of the global warming, save the turtles, recycle, etc… were more for publicity than for the actual benefit of our world. It’s sad to think that that was my mindset, but I was never provided an opportunity to step back and truly evaluate the big issues at stake. Earth is designed to adapt the same way the human body is designed to adapt to its surroundings however with the way that we are running our world right now and it’s causing issues that are becoming irreversible. The eleventh hour movie was a very eye-opening educational opportunity. The topic in class this past week was the final hour of the 11th hour movie, and we discussed as a class what steps we could take to be able to take action and start taking care of our world, our home. We are in our final hour before it will be too late to fix these issues. I plan to take all of the material I have learned about sustainability and put that into practice. I want to be part of the chain reaction that helps restore our world into what it is meant to be. More than half the time we are all wrapped up in our cellphones on social media to even realize what is happening outside of the little box in our hand. If we paid half as much attention to what is actually happening in the real world as we do to what’s going on on social media we would actually be able to make a difference, and diminish our carbon footprint. I really want to take all the material that I have learned from this course this semester and just run with it. I want to keep learning about it, I want to keep promoting it and I want to let other people that may not be aware of what’s happening in our world aware and how they can help as well. I think it is so important that we as the human race start practicing what we’ve been preaching for years, because this is it. I loved practicing mindfulness in class with meditation, because it helped me escape all of the stress and chaos that this semester has been and brought me to a moment of peace and tranquility that I think we can all use from time to time.

In conclusion this was one of my favorite classes I have taken at OSU. The way the learning material was presented made it easy to understand, and Dr. Armstrong made sure to be as interactive as possible despite the unprecedented circumstances of this semester. From practicing mindfulness to identifying wicked problems that surround us every single day I will be walking away from this course with a much larger and stronger understanding of what is happening in our world. My perspective has grown and my horizons have been broadened about what I myself can do to help our environment, but also what I can do to help myself. Through the mindfulness practice I have learned that I need to step back sometimes and look at the bigger picture. Now that I have a better understanding of the real issues our world is facing, I am looking forward to being more aware of what is happening in our world and doing my research to make sure I do my part to help. Here’s to a new and better understanding of a sustainable future. We are in our final hour and it is time to take action. 

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