This site contains the archives of my travel blogs from 2010-2016.

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Wednesday, February 11, 2009

a little update....

This week has just been incredibly busy, but in a good sort of way.
Here are just a few of the interesting things in the works:

  • 40 Days Across America: this innovative domestic "study abroad" trip has never before been atempted by any university. 11 students. 2 professors. 1 tour bus. 40 states. 40 days. $6,800.
    Yeah ok. So the price is a little steep. But the experience is going to be totally worth it. Right now I'm working on getting corporate sponsorships -- both personally, and for the group if possible. If you know anyone in any industry who might be interested....please let me know!!
  • ETP 3000 -- Foundations in Entrepreneurship: I won't lie, this eight-week course gets a little hard to sit through going on hour 3 of the 4-hour Tuesday night session. But overall I have learned an enormous amount about entrepreneurial activities and the business mindset in general. This is my first business class; I just changed my majors last semester from Sociology and French to International Business and Entrepreneurship. So, after 14 years of studying mostly the arts, it's been an interesting and somewhat challenging transition from a Humanities to a Business mindset.
    I'm currently investigating and putting together an analysis of the Public Relations Industry. It's an area I've been interested in for a while, but it's great to really get in and get familiar with how everything works. I'm amazed not only by the complexity of some aspects, but also by the simplicity of others.
  • Art & Music: I've never had very much of a passion for creative or fine art. I've always appreciated music, but haven't dissected the parts of a finished piece and looked at how they all fit together. It may be that Belmont's fine-arts-driven environment is influencing me; I've just been so inspired lately by paintings, photographs, music, statues, and even poetry (which, that right there is amazing in and of itself -- I've always loathed poetry!)
    Some of my recent favorites: Wynonna, who I saw in concert earlier this week; Jean-Michel Folon, a Belgian painter whose collective work I would describe as "peaceful" (see a few of his works featured in the left column of this blog); Yaël Naïm, a musician who sings beautifully in both French and Hebrew (listen to one of her songs at the top left of this blog); Joshua Bell, an amazing violinist -- his work is just breathtaking; Yannick Noah, a French-Jamaican Reggae pop singer; and various amateur photographers whose work is displayed privately and inconspicuously.
  • Seven Futures: Today Erik R. Peterson, Senior Vice President of the Center for Strategic & International Studies -- a Washington D.C. think-tank, spoke at Belmont. His hour long talk focused on the Seven Revolutions that will take place in the next 15 years. The question of the hour: What will the world look like in 2025? Peterson's scientifically- and sociologically-based argument featured seven areas which will undoubtedly help shape the world as we will know it in 2025. These areas include: Population Demographics (developed vs. undeveloped world, global aging, urbanization); Resource Management (Food, Water, Energy); Technology (Computation, Robotics, Biotechnology, Nanotechnology); Data Information & Knowledge (he predicts that by age 38 people will have gone through 10-14 major career changes -- how will we handle acquiring the specialized knowledge for each of those? Also, he stresses the opportunity people the world over will have to "innovate without having to emigrate"); Global Economic Integration; Conflict (Bioterrorism -- there is a high probability of increased conflict, so we need to focus on resilience); and Governance (who will be controlling what?
    It was a highly informative and thought-provoking presentation. If you want to know more about the concept or the agency, visit www.csis.org.
  • FYI: This little fact kind of jumped out at me during Erik Peterson's talk this morning-- Did you know that the World Health Organization's budget last year was $2.2 billion?
    Last year the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation gave away $2.3 billion.
  • P.S. -- My mom just had oral surgery this morning after being in a lot of pain for about a week....so if you're the praying type, please include her in your prayers! :)


  1. shirah, i'll pray for your mom!

    also, i'm going to check out some of the artists you listed - thanks:)!

    i 'tagged' you on our blog, so you better get your little tail in gear, haah!

    love ya!


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