Saturday, November 8, 2008

The Symposium

Today was packed with tons of things to do starting from 9:00 all the way to 4:45! After breakfast we heard from a few alumni students about their projects, which were doing pretty good. They had some real interesting topics, one girl was trying to ban the use of styrofoam in her county. I really liked her topic because I'm very into the environment and going GREEN. After the student presentations, we split up into groups with people that had projects very similar to ours. In the group I got a lot of feedback, and a bunch of interesting ideas for my project. The girls really helped me plan out my project and take the steps I need to execute it.
For lunch we went to a Vietnamese restaurant, it was really good and kind of reminded me of home. After lunch we took a few classes that would help us with our projects, my first class was persuasive communication. It was just a re-cap on public speaking, and we had one minute to put together a presentation to the "people we are targeting". Unfortunately, the class ended before i had a chance to go. the next class was peer motivation, which I will need a lot of help in. It was really interesting to find that psychology had something to do with motivating people. and now I'm going to go have dinner, and catch up with old & new friends.


Charles Ramsey said...

Thanks for the comprehensive update and how the program is allowing you new ideas and how to bring back some creative solutions to Richmond High School. I know that you have worked hard over the last two days and I am glad that you had a chance to return to Brown University.

As a junior, you have a lot of time to reflect and forge a direction for college. I am sure that Brown University will be on your list as you decide next year where you want to spend your four years in college.

Please have a good time and make sure that you bring back a "little bit of Brown" back with you. Remember to take a final stroll down Thayer Street.

Charles T. Ramsey

dongosney said...

Gina⎯We send you a gazillion miles away from home and these people cheat you out of your chance to speak your presentation? I think they owe us some of our money back.

I think that if you give it some thought, you’ll see that the Persuasive Communication skills and the Peer Motivation go hand in hand. Master one and you can’t help but master the other. Fail at one and you’ve failed at both. I’m pretty sure the former is the way to go here.

There was a time in the not-so-distant past when we really didn’t care about the environment. The world was full of stuff so we could pollute our hearts out and there was always more to feed our desires.

Then we all had a collective light bulb go on over our heads and we realized that we were killing our planet. [Some people had thousand watt bulbs go on while others only had nightlights.]

Once we realized what we were doing we had to use some of those skills you wrote of to convince others of the error of their thinking. It wasn’t an easy task and didn’t happen over night but we made enough small steps to change the world. We still have a long way to go but at least we know what has to be done. Now we just need to convince others of the wisdom of our viewpoints.

Look at cities like Bezerkely where styrofoam cups and food containers are no longer allowed and look at San Francisco where plastic grocery bags are no longer permitted. These changes didn’t happen over night and they didn’t happen without the efforts of a lot of people but in both cities it all started with just one person standing up and voicing their opinions. They then used their communicative skills to motivate their peers to take action. Before long, the voice of the many became the law of the land. Now, other communities are heading to SF and the People’s Republic of Berkeley to learn from them so they can change their own community.

You’re on the right track, Gina. Stay the course. For what issues can we expect you to stand up and be counted?