Sources

Bibliography (MLA)

1) “Energy Use at the University of Delaware.” University of Delaware Sustainability, The University of Delaware, sites.udel.edu/sustainability/energy/. Accessed 24 Apr. 2017.

2) Hoffman, Melody K. “Campuses Growing Greener.” Jet, vol. 117, no. 16, 19 Apr. 2010, p. 35. EBSCOhost, search.ebscohost.com/login.aspxdirect=true&db=8gh&AN=49467284&site=ehost-live.

3) Knox, Nora. “Green Building Costs and Savings.” USGBC, U.S. Green Building Council, 25 Mar. 2015, www.usgbc.org/articles/green-building-costs-and-savings. Accessed 24 Apr. 2017.

4) “Sustainability.” EPA, Environmental Protection Agency, 18 Oct. 2016, www.epa.gov/sustainability. Accessed 24 Apr. 2017.

5) Sutter, John, and Rachel Rodriguez. “COP21: 9 Questions for a Renewable Energy Expert.” CNN, Cable News Network, 10 Dec. 2015, www.cnn.com/2015/12/10/opinions/cop21-facebook-chat/. Accessed 24 Apr. 2017.

How I Use These Sources

Source #1 focuses on the University of Delaware’s plan to become more environmentally sustainable. According to this website, “in 2008, the University set a goal to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions by 20% by 2020.” This information demonstrates that the University is taking steps towards becoming a “greener” campus, which leads to my argument that other colleges and uniLOGO-Sust-LG-108suqp.pngversities should follow in UD’s footsteps. Source #2 explains how more colleges are now offering sustainability degrees to students. According to this article, 200 colleges and universities across the nation currently offer a sustainability degree. In my paper, I use this information to argue that more colleges should offer sustainability degrees to students considering that there are over 5,000 colleges in the U.S. (200/5,000 = only 4%). I use source #3 to discredit the opposing side’s argument that converting buildings in an environmentally sustainable way is costlier than traditional building renovations. This is meant to show readers that I’ve acknowledged the other side’s views, yet still believe that mine is correct which gives me ethos. Source #4 provides background information on environmental sustainability in the U.S. and the role of the EPA which I use in my introduction to introduce the topic. Source #5 is another source I use to challenge the opposing side as it explains how converting to more environmentally sustainable practices will actually create more jobs than it replaces, contrary to popular belief. Overall, I feel good about each of these sources and what they add to my paper.

Research Paper Topics

When trying to decide on a research argument, topics that I have an interest in should obviously be explored. Arguments that involve sports, cultural diversity, and public health are probably more down my alley so my topics deal with these three areas of research.

Question 1: Should universities have such a large portion of funds invested in athletic programs?

This topic is brought up very frequently because of the issues of student debt and quality of education that surround it. Students are upset because numerous schools put money into sports that are drawn from their tuition. There is also the converse argument that the athletic programs are generating a profit, so ultimately it benefits the university.

Motivation: Too often I hear people complain about how easy the student athletes have it. They receive a full scholarship and then just take the easiest classes. I think about it differently. A lot of recruited student athletes desperately need the scholarship. Athletics can be their only way out of poverty. Also, maintaining a balance of commitment to both education and athletics is very difficult. I want to explore this because I also value both athletics and education.

Information and Arguments: I hope to find information and statistics that display the statistics for money placed into athletics programs at major colleges. Ideally, data on the revenue that these schools receive would be very effective in backing my argument on the productivity of emphasis on athletics for schools as a business. Another argument I could include is the idea that placing too much money into athletic programs hinders the educational quality of the university. This cannot be true since there are so many schools that are sport great educational programs as well as athletic programs (Examples include Duke, Stanford, Northwestern, and many more). My major points will probably be the three stated.

 

Question 2: To what extent does race influence opportunity?

This topic is one we hear typically in the debate for equality between men and women, however, there still may be a prevalent disparity between the hiring or acceptance of people of certain races or religions. This is a very touchy topic, but it is still very important because the overall goal for society should be that every individual regardless of race, gender, or religious receives identical opportunities.

Motivation: This topic is important to me because I am a person of color and I am saddened whenever I hear stories of discrimination. As a college student, I want to receive similar opportunities for success as my peers of other races or faiths. The hard work I put in should be rewarded and the same goes for all students.

Information and Arguments: As of now, I don’t know how great the difference is between the races in hiring and such opportunities, but hopefully I can find some data that presents this information and the differences will not be negligible. I could also mix gender into the argument as well, so a total analysis of racial and gender differences could vividly paint the picture of the situation. I would make the argument that people of color perhaps don’t receive identical treatment as other do when it comes to the work force. Additionally, I would argue the reasoning behind this and how certain races are stereo-typically veered towards jobs that ‘suit’ them.

 

Question 3: Should all campuses be smoke free zones?

Smoking whether it be cigarettes or any other drug is harmful for the user, but it can also be detrimental towards those around them. Secondhand smoking is a contributor to health issues. Society is so much more accepting smoking, but it can still have repercussions for people in the proximity. In close packed areas, inhaling smoke from cigarettes can also trigger asthma attacks and other breathing issues. Additionally, smoking can lead to addiction and addiction to anything is usually negative.

Motivation: I am completely against smoking because of how detrimental it is to the human body, but more than that, growing up with asthma made me very conscious of when people were smoking around me. On campus, I see countless people smoking and numerous cigarette butts lying around in the sidewalks. This is bad for the environment as well as public health.

Information and Arguments: The most necessary statistics to pursue this topic would be effects of secondhand smoking on people. This is crucial because the ‘public health’ issue is concerned with the people around the smoker. Additionally, it would be helpful to know about other campuses that have implemented a smoke free policy and how that has changed both the environment and the public health of the school. My key arguments revolve around the consequences of smoking both for the user and the public. As stated before, secondhand smoking is a thing and should be a major concern for everyone, but most importantly those with breathing conditions such as asthma.

Researched Argument Possible Topics

When thinking about the researched argument, the kinds of topics that interest me are regarding athletics, health/environment, and food waste. These topics interest me because I know what it’s like to be on an athletic team, I am a student of the college of health sciences, and I care about saving food, rather than just throwing it away.

1.) Question: Should college athletes be paid?

This is an important question because college teams bring in a lot of money for universities, their coaches receive salaries but college athletes themselves, who dedicate countless hours, are not paid for their time and hard work.

Motivation: I am motivated to explore the topic of whether or not college athletes should be compensated because I have always been an athlete so I know how much time and energy goes into being part of a team and participating in a sport (while being expected to balance all other activities).

Information: I hope to find specific numbers regarding how much revenue college teams bring in, how much money their respective coaches make, and how many hours athletes spend each week with their team.

Arguments: I hope to argue that because of their influence, the amount of time spent dedicated to their team, and the amount of money that they help universities make, they should be rewarded for their time, just as professional athletes are. They are recruited just as professional athletes and should be compensated.

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2.) Question: Should more hydration stations be implemented on college campuses in order to help the environment/promote easy access to clean water?

This is an important question because many students love the idea of being able to quickly fill up their water bottles with clean, filtered water. These hydration stations also help save plastic, but it’s important to keep in mind the cost of adding more of them to campuses.

Motivation: I am motivated to explore this topic because I am a health behavior science major and staying hydrated (through easy access to clean water) is an aspect of wellness that drives/influences so many other parts of health. Also, these stations reduce the risk of plastic water bottles, so they are also environmentally friendly.

Information: I hope to find specific numbers on how many plastic water bottles are used annually and how that number contributes to the waste in the environment. I also want to explore the varying costs of hydration stations.

Arguments: I hope to argue that more hydration stations will eliminate excess plastic waste and encourage students to drink more water and stay hydrated, positively impacting their health.

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3.) Question: What should be done about food waste in dining halls?

This is an important question because so much food is thrown away and there are plenty of people/places lacking food that could benefit from donating the food.

Motivation: I am motivated to explore this topic because access to food is something that is critically important to all and the fact that so much food is wasted makes me want to combat it and find plausible ways to repurpose wasted food from dining halls.

Information: I hope to find specific numbers/statistics on how much food is wasted each day in a typical dining hall and compare those numbers to the local people/places that are in need of food.

Arguments: I hope to argue that excess food in dining halls should be collected to some extent and donated to local food banks or poor people/families who are in need of food.

Fresh Food In Garbage Can To Illustrate Waste

Media and the American Environmental Movement

Benjamin von Duyke

For the environmental movement, a website is a way to mobilize supporters and to deliver information. The Internet is an extremely useful tool for ensuring that the environment is maintained and that businesses operate ethically. Movements against the Dakota access pipeline were organized through internet activism and BP was held responsible for multiple spills using Twitter and websites focused on environmental advocacy. On many environmentalist organizations webpages, they speak out for not only environmental activism, but political activism, encouraging voters to support the politicians who support the environment and to oust Donald Trump and his climate change denying cabinet. These movements use photographs to show how companies misuse public lands and to show images of protestors mobilizing and affecting change.

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              For my own website, I will be using images and videos for two distinct purposes. The first will be to show the natural beauty of the United States and the areas within which we must protect and defend. This will encourage people to act as proper stewards for the natural beauty we all share. The second use of videos and images will be to show people the consequences which arise when regulations are loosened or become lax, and to reveal how private interest group can abuse our shared Earth when left unchecked. These two purposes act to show what we have to gain from the protection of the natural American environment, and how people and the Earth at large suffer when we fail to regulate businesses.

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I would also like to incorporate poetry as a medium in my website. I think that poetry is inextricably linked to the American Environmental movement. In my opinion, American Transcendentalism is one of the most important artistic movements in America and its writers chose to capture the natural beauty of the American landscape through lyrical lenses.

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Conservation of Elephants

An online platform for the movement of conserving elephants will add another voice to the community of conservationists who are already working to save these animals, along with all of the other wildlife conservation efforts. Save the Elephants, an UK organization based in Kenya, was founded in 1993 and is one of the leaders for conserving elephants and their habitats. Their website has details of all of their past, current, and future projects to reach their goal, and contains information that is easy to interpret by anyone who reads it. It contains logical information presented in a way that shows their passion toward preserving elephants. In addition to Save the Elephants, there are other organizations working to protect elephants, African wildlife, and wildlife in general that use online platforms to provide information. Some of these include the World Wildlife Foundation (WWF), Save Elephants, and Ninety-Six Elephants. Many of these organizations and websites encourage the conservation of elephants and ending the ivory trade that is pushing them to the brink of extinction. 

Another way this movement uses the online community to build their platform is by selling products. For example, Ivory Ella is a clothing and accessory brand that donates 10% of their net profits to Save the Elephants. With the slogan: “Good Clothes for a Good Cause,” Ivory Ella, in less than two years, has donated over $1,000,000 to Save the Elephants to help them in their projects to conserve elephants. Their products also reach people in their every-day lives and raise awareness for preserving elephants when their customers wear their products. Walking around our own campus, I usually spot a few people every week wearing an Ivory Ella shirt. Ivory Ella creates a branch between the online community of conservationists and people in their daily lives. It also helps because selling a product makes people more likely to donate money. The donation is incorporated into the price of the clothing, so customers don’t really feel like they are spending extra. Because many people are hesitant to hit the “donate now” button, offering a product in exchange makes people more willing to put some of their money toward the organization. Plus, considering some people buy Ivory Ella products as gifts for people they know love elephants, it reaches another audience of people who may actually just be neutral on the subject.

For my own website, I want to portray the information I gather as effectively as some of the other websites I found related to this cause. A lot of the websites incorporate images that support the text on the websites, or that will grab the reader’s attention to make them read that part of the website. For example, Ninety-Six Elephants uses an origami image of an elephant to say, “Join the fold,” making a clever pun for people to join others who already support the cause. They also use an image with police tape to emphasize that wildlife trafficking is a crime, and that we should work to end it. I also want to remind readers that they do not have to make a direct donation to a charity to help this movement, but that they can help by purchasing products that will raise awareness and contribute some of the profits to the cause. I want viewers of my website to have enough information on the issues facing elephants and their habitats, and to know that there is more than one way to help conservation efforts. 

 

Advocacy

To me, advocacy means to create a voice for a cause that you believe in, whether it is online, or physically at a march or protest, or just talking to the people around you. It also means that if you are creating this voice, then you have to be able to support the cause with facts and not just say that others should support it because you do. Movements that work/worked to create change that immediately come to mind are Black Lives Matter, women’s suffrage, and the Civil Rights Movement. Some interesting current movements I’d like to explore include environmental justice, conservation, pro-choice, and ecofeminism.

Conservation is one that interests me because part of what I am studying here is Wildlife Conservation and Ecology and I believe it is important to conserve what we still have of the natural world for future generations to enjoy, as well as to keep the earth healthy and in a livable condition. The pro-choice movement is one that I also feel strongly about because I believe it is an important part of women’s rights and health care that could be threatened by the new presidential administration.

A movement that I just learned about recently and find really interesting is ecofeminism. Ecofeminism focuses on all oppressed/dominated groups, including women, people of color, and the natural world. Ecofeminism is one that I find important because it connects different movements that I think are important, such as conservation, preserving nature, and advancing the rights of women and minorities. I think exploring this movement would be interesting because it would bring to light the relationships and connections between different areas of oppression in a male-dominated society. Moving forward with exploring ecofeminism might be difficult because there are many different definitions and interpretations of what “ecofeminism” is really considered because it covers so many areas, but I also think its wide variation of concerns is part of what makes it interesting and important.

What is Advocacy to Me?

Advocacy to me means standing up for what you are passionate about and what you feel needs to change in society. I believe that when people work together for these movements and collectively want things to change, amazing things can happen. The feelings of collective effervescence that occur when people are all gathered for the same cause is something that makes advocacy so empowering. One of the most recent example of this that comes to mind for me is the Women’s March on Washington! Before attending the March on Jan 21st I had never really been a part of a huge protest such as that, and it was one of the best experiences of my life so far. With the current political climate and the controversial situation with our new Commander in Chief, it can be hard to remember that there ARE people in this country/world that want positive change. That being said, seeing the half a million people gather in Washington (and all over the world!) to stand up for women’s rights AND stand in solidarity with all minorities was so empowering.

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The ideals behind the Women’s March definitely are one’s that resonate with me in my life. One, being that I am indeed a woman, and simply the general ideals that enforced love, acceptance and equality between ALL people. I would definitely like to look more into this modern movement along with the reasons that led to it, (the Presidential campaign for example), or possibly even other movements that are being emphasized during this difficult political climate, such as the debate on Refugees & Immigration or the movement to emphasize climate change’s existence and risks. I personally try to be a huge advocate for climate change and its threats to the planet, as I am a huge outdoors lover, so I would enjoy looking into that more. A challenge to exploring the climate change movement is the fact that many people will overlook it simply for economic benefits or to avoid inconvenience in their every day lives, however the benefits would be the fact that it can literally help save the environment and Earth that we live on!

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