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Getting a Glimpse of the Future in Hon 380

One chilly spring morning, a view on top of the Preston Center illuminates a rarely seen perspective of WKU. Eighty-eight solar panels on Preston’s roof transfer heat from the sun to the pool. The sustainability tour of WKU’s facilities is just beginning.

Swimming in the Natatorium, students rarely realize the sustainable source of our heated pool hidden on the roof.

Swimming in the Natatorium, students rarely realize the sustainable source of our heated pool hidden on the roof.

This insider access to the mechanics of our University’s sustainability efforts are part of  HON 380: Trends Shaping our Future: Local and Global Perspectives. The class addresses the trends shaping our local and global communities over the next 30-50 years and our part in creating the best possible future.

Each day in the class is different. Discussion drives the course, allowing students to take the talks in the direction they want to explore. It makes class exciting. Innovative ideas open up and students engage with the content more than in any lecture.

It’s mind opening to say the least. After taking the class, I became conscious of the impact of even seemingly inconsequential choices and how they affect our future. Noticing the key trends unfolding inspires action. We all impact the future, for better or worse. HON 380 questions how you will impact it.

HON 380 provides multiple outlets for observing real world instances and applications for the trends discussed in class. Taking a tour of WKU’s sustainability highlights brought course material into the real world. This type of class is as much about application as class discussion and content.

Last year, motivated by a desire to bring attention to hunger disparities, the two sections of the class teamed up to engage with the community through hosting an international banquet.

Dinner discussion revolved around class content, inspiring other members of the community to think about the future and their place within it.

Dinner discussion revolved around class content, inspiring other members of the community to think about the future and their place within it.

The banquet’s guests assumed the roles of people in different parts of the world and received a meal according to actual data from that area. Plates ranged from a full steak dinner to a petite bowl of plain rice to demonstrate disparities in the world’s food systems. Local eateries donated all the food.

Applying information is a critical part of the learning experience, making HON 380: Trends Shaping our Future: Local and Global Perspectives a perfect opportunity to enhance your education at WKU.

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