Global Environmental Policy

Global Environmental Policy was another class that greatly enhanced my understanding of sustainability. This course was taken in Madrid, Spain and addressed many environmental issues, and it also included many opportunities for hands-on learning. One of the most outstanding experiences was gaining the local knowledge of my professor through a tour of the most sustainable aspects of the city. She introduced us to banks that avoid investing in fossil fuels, to markets that promoted the advancements of local farmers, to artwork that conveyed the detrimental effects of gentrification. During these few hours, I came to realize how extensive sustainability could be. A sustainable lifestyle could be taken as far as I wanted it to be. It was not simply just switching from single use plastics to reusables. I could change my entire behavior based off online research. Around the same time, I also recognized the power of the consumer. By making deliberate choices of what to buy, I was choosing to support companies that aligned with my morals.  For the rest of my time in Madrid, I stopped buying from stores that revolved around fast fashion. I was now aware of their profit off of low wages in impoverished countries, where these companies additionally took advantage by manufacturing without regulations on emissions. Although the information was horrifying, I also felt incredibly empowered. I possessed the ability to monetarily express my viewpoints, even if it was only happening on a small scale.

Plaza de Cibeles- Madrid, Spain