The main goal of this trip is to showcase environmental and public health issues through writing a book and in our blog. As a recent graduate from the School of Public and Environmental Affairs with a MPA and MSES I focused on water resources and environmental education. While many of the concepts covered during my education were dire and important, I realized many topics were only reaching people in specific fields. Let's be honest, a majority of the general public isn't going to pull out a research paper on shrinking of the Colorado river and say "my, isn't this just riveting."
In my work experience, which includes working at the US Forest Service, the IU Office of Sustainability, and an outdoor trip guide, I have found that environmental awareness is lacking. I believe that if the information is presented in an engaging, entertaining manner, the general public is more likely to absorb it, or at the least, pay attention. While I focus on environmental issues during our adventure and in the book, Austin, my partner in crime, will be tackling America's largest epidemic: obesity.
By sharing environmental issues through an engaging manner, I believe it will generate conversation and mindfulness in environmental topics. In a time where it is easier to live vicariously through others, this method of engagement can be successful.
In all the trips I have taken, whether small or extravagant, my eyes were opened to a new energy. I have always developed deeper levels of appreciation for the people and places I experienced. I don't just travel with the expectation that something exciting will happen to me; my travels are more active rather than passive by seeking new people, places experiences and fulfillment. There is something incredibly inspirational about wandering unplanned into the unknown; therefore a major point of this trip is to welcome spontaneity.
Now, I know that sounds a little staggering, to focus on all those issues at once, but we are looking forward to the serendipity of the adventure and to be able to reach so many people. We want to share this adventure with everyone and in the process raise awareness to some of the Nations most prominent environmental and health issues. During the trip we will be looking at observing trends in our specific concentration (environment and public health) and increasing awareness through our blogs, videos and spontaneous teachable moments in the field.We are looking for sponsors and benefactors to help us achieve this goal- any donation will be thankfully received. Please follow are adventure along the way by following our Facebook page, Twitter and Blog !