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This year's One Book, One Campus selectionWhat will you be doing this Fall? Discovering new things about yourself and the world around you? Developing plans for your future? Doing something new, great, exciting?

Every fall at C.O.D. 3D works with students, staff, faculty and the community to kickstart conversations that can help you achieve these goals. 3D– and you guessed what those three Ds stand for, right?– challenges you to think critically about the important issues which effect us all.

This year’s 3D focus is Nurture|Nature—Enriching Our College Community through Shared Ethical Values. Throughout the academic year, 3D will be promoting discussions and activities which will encourage exploration of the explore the values cited in College of DuPage’s Institutional Priorities: Integrity, Honesty, Respect, and Responsibility.

To spark the conversation, this year’s One Book, One Campus selection is This I Believe: The Personal Philosophies of Remarkable Mean and Women. Here’s a description of the book from the website GoodReads:

Based on the NPR series of the same name, This I Believe features eighty Americans from the famous to the unknown; completing the thought that the book’s title begins. Each piece compels readers to rethink not only how they have arrived at their own personal beliefs but also the extent to which they share them with others. . . The result is a stirring and provocative trip inside the minds and hearts of a diverse group of people whose beliefs; and the incredibly varied ways in which they choose to express them reveal the American spirit at its best.

We hope that This I Believe will inspire you, too.  Borrow the book from the Library (more copies will be arriving soon), visit the This I Believe website (http://thisibelieve.org) and keep an eye out for 3D activities throughout this semester and next.

Interested in sharing what you believe? Tell your stories here on the blog!

Many of the essays we have read, discussed and written about so far this term (in my English 1102 classes) have focused in some way on an individual’s role/place in a community — relating in particular to the growth of technology.  This emphasis on community involvment is, I think, an essential component of the 3D focus.  Therefore, I invite the students in all three of my English 1102 classes (as well as others who want to share their ideas) to blog about how, as members of the College of DuPage community, they can become more environmentally responsible specifically in relation to the use of technology.

Professor Sue Frankson

Adjunct English Instructor

Listen to COD English Professor Tom Montgomery-Fate’s essay on the topic.

http://www.loe.org/shows/segments.htm?programID=08-P13-00042&segmentID=8

What Have You Discovered…

about your relationship to the environment since the fall semester began? This is the week to blog about it! Click “comments” below and tell us!

   The following math/science project was adapted from material found in the book Mathematics for Human Survival by Patricia Clark Kenschaft. Her intent is best expressed by her own words “With luck, the mathematical concepts and exercises in this book will help you better understand the current threats to global sustainability and develop the skills to help you address these threats. Maybe it will help readers reconsider financial and lifestyle choices, as well as public policies. Just possibly this book will play some role in helping humanity survive on this globe.”
   She includes background information about the environmental importance of rainforests and the business reasons that rainforests are being destroyed. In these contexts, she has quantitative information addressing, as examples, effects of jet engines on carbon dioxide levels and rainforests being destroyed to graze beef cattle.
   I (Jim Bradley) adapted these exercises slightly and provided projects within the 3D context to two sections of my Mathematics 1100 – Business Math classes. Over forty-five students participated in the activity. The students were to solve the problems using dimensional analysis and data conversions. The answers to the questions as posed implied:

  • The daily departures from O’Hare International Airport effectively cancel the daily oxygen production of a rainforest almost as large as the state of Illinois.
  • Producing a quarter pound hamburger can destroy 55 square feet of rainforest

   I asked them to work the problems in groups, individually reflect, and then discuss the results again in the same groups. One of the students who participated was very passionate in opposition to the statistics and positions taken in the book. That student may end up developing a minority report English paper on the subject in her writing class.
   We captured data on how many of the students were either unaware of the issues and/or surprised by the results. Moreover the students were asked to indicate lifestyle choices they may consider changing based on the results. These results are summarized in the comments.

                                                                                    O’Hare     Quarter
                                                                                                     Pounders

Percent previously familiar with issue                                30            19
Percent surprised by the numerical results                        79            81

Sample of Math 1100 Students
Suggestions relative to changes in lifestyle suggested by the analysis

  • Fly less
  • Use public transportation
  • Eat fewer quarter pounders
  • Eat less
  • Plant a tree
  • Plant another tree
  • No changes
  • No changes because statistics can be manipulated to support theory
  • No changes
  • Plant more trees
  • Alternative transportation
  • Recycle
  • Be environmentally aware
  • Cut down on airplane usage
  • Eat vegetarian
  • One person can’t do anything
  • I never really fly
  • I just don’t want to
  • We can reduce the amount of meat used every day
  • Don’t waste food
  • Stop eating quarter pounders
  • Does not agree with the current practices of both issues
  • Reduce consumption of quarter pounders
  • Reduce consumption of beef
  • Travel less
  • Ride a bike
  • Use alternative travel
  • Drive less
  • Eat less meat

   In summary, the problems proved challenging and relatively interesting for these students. They enjoyed the group-work and discussion as an alternative to the lecture. Moreover, a significant percentage of the students gained an increased awareness of or appreciation for the magnitudes and controversies associated with these issues.

Each student in my calculus class is collecting data on a 3-D related topic. These include amount of recyclables they produce each day, amount of water used in a shower, amount of electricity used. They will then be analyzing the data using calculus and writing a blog about their project.

My students get lost in the maze.

My students get lost in the maze.

Thursday, September 25, the sun shone warm and bright—a beautiful day to wander Morton Arboretum for an hour. Forty of my (Linda Elaine’s) English 1101 students, some for the first time, converged on the Arboretum grounds to complete the first part of an observation and description essay assignment, the double-entry journal. Read their thoughts on what they discovered.

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