This course definitely turned out to be more than I had thought it would be. Most of the electives I have taken in the past are just classes that soon become memories, that honestly, I struggle to remember details about in the future. Although, it’s not a surprise that I found it very relatable and interesting to me since this class does appeal to my major, unlike most other electives of mine. From reading about different people’s opinions on blogs, in the class assigned books, and even hearing opinions in class, it was all very eye opening and helpful. I loved that I was able to get a taste of how my peers think about different subjects such as the communication between professionals and regular society in the health or science field, or even with the environment. I’ve never actually been able to have a class where we discuss things I love hearing about in the real world aspect, rather than the typical biology and chemistry that I am used to.

I learned so many things from this course that are apart of everyday life but I just never seemed to notice or think about before, such as greenwashing. I am a shy student that doesn’t particularly enjoy speaking up in class but this class helped me in expressing my thoughts in a different way, through blogs. Being able to talk about things like greenwashing in the blog, and actually being able to comment back to someone (since I’m not very good at doing that in class) has really helped me become more confident in my abilities to talk to other people about these kinds of topics.

Overall, I really enjoyed having this course in my schedule and I would recommend it to others as well. So thank you to my peers, our professor, and our teaching assistant for being so helpful and open minded throughout the semester!

finals-week       finals-week-2


By: Josie Silvey

Polar Bears

During last weeks class we had watched a documentary about global warming and the effects it has on our planet. One specific part of the movie that had a huge affect on me was the coral reef images when they had went into the sea, but another topic of global warming that I also have a weak spot for is the animals affected by the ice melting. No, it is not just polar bears, but polar bears seem to be the media and peoples main focus when thinking about the extreme amounts of ice that has began melting each year. This ice is not only a way for animals to not drown but it is their homes, where they feed, seek shelter, breed, and live in the beautiful eyes of nature. This is all disappearing, taken from them, and they are all dying. Not only is this decreasing our animal population but it is also increasing sea levels, bringing water onto shores and destroying homes and man made built things. These are all things that we can help, probably not stop completely, but we can stop this from happening so drastically and so quickly. If it was possible for us as a society to put ourselves in a polar bears life, or any living creature that lives or benefits from coral reefs, maybe we could change our actions. Maybe we would be able to understand the full force of these changes and truly change ourselves and our actions in return. This will never happen though, at least until society (all of society, not just parts of it here and there), our having their everyday life necessities taken from them without a means of replacing it or finding a new way to get the job accomplished. Animals don’t have the choice to create a new means of not drowning, they don’t have the choice to die or live from our actions. I hate to be the negative one, but I don’t see society as a whole changing until we are being forced to change. It’s truly sad.


By: Josie Silvey



Have you ever been watching TV and a commercial came on talking about how if you use their product you will be making a difference for wildlife or for the environment? Most people would probably agree that they have, because it’s everywhere! It’s almost hard to escape these misleading advertisements.

The commercial that I will always remember is the dawn dish soap commercial where they are washing the little duck. Dawn was able to find a way into my emotions by using wildlife as a benefiter from their product. Although, if we really think about it, is this actually the case? Dawn may make a small contribute to aspects of wildlife but definitely not the type of impact they display on their website, commercials, and all other advertisements. “Save on the brand that helps save wildlife” is an easy way to draw people in, and the baby duck is without a doubt a hook. When the Gulf spill happened Dawn seemed like a good way to “make a difference.” It is important, though, to keep in mind that they only show animals that come in contact with water, but don’t permanently live in it. The Gulf spill affected so many fish, and sea life that Dawn never advertised helping, because in reality they couldn’t, no one could. Their donations aren’t able to clean the ocean, nor is most other products donations. So although they may have a small impact it is us people and companies who must make the change, not rely on misleading advertisement. As Colbert says, “Apparently we just preemptively buy products from eco-unfriendly corporations who then donate some money and detergent to help clean up the next environmental mess we humans are sure to make.” This is true. We rely on company’s advertisements to show us what products we should and shouldn’t use in order to slightly impact our disasters. Greenwashing is real and is hard to see without further research, we must change our actions before disasters, not after.

By: Josie Silvey





Key Ingredients to Being 1 of the 12

adThink of how many advertising logos you see a day, really try to think about it. It doesn’t matter if you think really really hard or just barely at all because either way, you will remember roughly the same amount. This amount that you can recall is only a very small fraction of all the advertising logos that you had come across in that given day. To be more detailed, you see roughly 3,000 a day, register 80, and only remember 12 of them. That’s insane! I wonder why this is.

It’s not a tough question to answer when you take into perspective how many different advertisements your eyes come in contact with each and every day. Whether you notice or not, almost every piece of clothing, every object, car, restaurant, and almost everything else has some type of advertisement to it. That is a lot of little details for the mind to not only notice but to pick up on and remember.

n advertisement, to be successful is be be noticed and to draw people in. So what makes a successful advertisement or logo? Experts agree that there are “key ingredients” when it comes to how they are designed in order to be successful. Some of these ingredients include simplicity, and should be relatable, memorable, unique, appropriate, and definitely timeless. Simplicity will help to to keep people interested by not being too complex and making sure the people can make sense of the ad. Relatable helps a person to connect on a more personal level, memorable allows a person to think back on the advertisement that’s being displayed, and unique keeps it separate in one’s mind from all the others that the mind sees. Lastly, being timeless helps to make the product travel from generation to generation without changing, and therefore creating a consistent image for itself. Take McDonald’s and Arby’s for example, each have a slogan. Many more people could recite the McDonald’s slogan of “ba da ba ba ba im lovin it” as compared to Arby’s “we have the meats.” Another example would be the symbols of two different phone brands, apple and droid. The white apple symbol is much more widely known when compared to the green guy that droid has. There is an infamous amount of things that could be compared and many will run across some that are well known and some they may not even know. Although, an advertisement doesn’t depend on going viral in order to be successful. Many different advertisements are intended to reach different crowds, and as long as that goal is accomplished, it can lead the success.  Advertisement is, in a way, a hit or miss thing and can really make or break a product, it’s a tough and forever changing business to keep up with.

By: Josie Silvey



Keep Shopping. But Not Too Much.


After the events of 9/11 President Bush had given advice to the American people to go out and go shopping. His intentions for this advice was the idea that we, as a country, did not destroy ourselves and our economy from the inside out. If we would have stopped the producer and consumer circle the terrorist would have won in many different aspects beyond taking down our Twin Towers and all of the physical and emotional damage that came with it. This shows that each individual plays a role and has a duty to be an active consumer, but is there such thing as too much consumption? Can this actually be damaging for not necessarily our economy but for our relationships, environment, self-control, and other extremely important details that makeup our lives? 

It is obvious that too little of consumption can have extreme, negative results. Aside from too little, in my opinion, we are also seeing that too much consumption can do the same. By becoming obsessed with consumptions, we lose self-control. Instead of having an iPhone 5S or 5C, people feel obligated to go out and buy the newest, shiniest gadget. This can go beyond electronics, flowing into things such as fashion. When self-control with shopping is lost, it can have many effects. Such as, relationships with family or partners. This can cause conflict through arguments and disagreements over money.Is it worth  On the other hand, it can damage our environment, destroying the world around us one tree and one landfill at a time. Is this worth it?
Is buying the newest style or electronic really important enough to risk basic parts and necessities of our lives? Some may say yes, but many will probably agree that preserving these things are vital and should be in just as high of a rank.
-Josie Silvey

What Do You Think of When You Hear the Word Environment?

Kaola saved from deforestation

We had recently discussed in class the topic of what comes to mind when you think of nature or the environment. For me, my mind had an immediate response, my backyard. I was raised on a farm with plenty of untouched land as well as farm land in order for me to explore. Although, other people may have had a different response due to there being no one correct answer. These variations of images and words that our generation, and past generations, had used were all relatively similar. Many consisting of trees, animals, water, and the basic forms of life outside of the indoors and the electronics. Nut can we say for sure that this will always be what “nature” or “environment” brings to mind for future generations?

Forests are vital for human and animal life, providing everything from oxygen and medicine to clothes. But we are losing our forests rapidly, quite faster than what our future generations may be able to handle. On average, 46-48 thousand square miles of forest is lost each year, that’s 48 football fields.. a year! Even with people protecting and conserving some of the wildlife, it is still obvious that forests are not just magically forming as fast as they are being destroyed. What happens when we run out? How will basic life necessities be filled, how will “environment” be described? Will it consist of the next way that technology finds to solve of world problems? Artificial trees?

I guess my point is, the image of nature or environment is much more deep than what it may seem. How the given generation views these two words, and what comes to mind, is a reflection of our actions, years and years of actions. If we are to ask future generations to describe or draw what comes to mind and it is in the form of 100% technology rather than having fundamentals of the outdoors, have we really done our jobs of preserving and caring for the Earth. This is a scary thought, with a much more difficult solution. It has me wondering and torn about which is most important between anthropocentric, ecocentric, or one of the betweens. Is there a common ground? Is there one right answer? Or should society focus on the now and here, teaching and showing children all the up to date forms of our world.

Source: http://www.worldwildlife.org/threats/deforestation

By: Josie Silvey

Is There Too Much Separation Between Science and Society?


Science is based on fact more than anything else, whereas society is more based on experience. We had discussed in class how “scientists are ‘walled off’ in their own world and don’t relate to the needs and concerns of the larger community.” This, though, can also be said about society with relating to science. Most of society relies on personal experience and only really deals with fact when it is presented to and broken down for them. So can the two collide? Or are we too far past the point of intermediacy?

Science is a topic that does not relate easily to topics outside of its own comfort zone, such as media, entertainment, and politics. Therefore, people of society that have a natural liking or gift for areas in art, music, politics or even theater, may not have a natural understanding for science like those in math, or research. This can make it difficult for the “outsiders of science” to understand what is basic to those who are in the loop, and vise versa. This is exactly why scientists must recognize the difference and work to discover new ways to better others interpretations. But this takes us back to fact, and scientists see fact in a much different way than society does, fact is much more clear and grounded for scientists. This is where the two struggle to find a common ground. Can we even understand one another enough to find this common ground? This, I believe, is very possible, but it takes a lot of patience and elaboration for one another, which I strongly believe our world lacks.


This picture is a great representation of how the two, even though they are programmed very differently, can work together to help support and actually have a better overall understanding of the issue or topic in question. Even though the two may not naturally collaborate together well or enjoy “hearing each other out,” there is not too much of a separation between the two to where we can’t pull ourselves out of it. But, I do believe there should be more understanding and working together between science and society. Separately, they are average, but put together they can be extraordinary.

By: Josie Silvey