May 8, 2008

Improving Maternal Health


Millennium Development Goal: Improving Maternal Health

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Region selected: Ethiopia due to its highest rate in maternal deaths

Some of this issues at hand include:
The timing and spacing of the pregnancies but also poor access to emergency care. DFID is making a difference by making it easier for poor women to see a midwife or doctor, get emergency treatment during their labour and have better access to family planning services and information so they can choose when and how they become pregnant.

Another main issue that was talked about was the illness of Fistula where the women are kicked out of their village as well as their families from the effects of the illness, including the foul odor that is given off by the women.

One of the main sponsors that is trying to aid in the improvement of Maternal health is Johnson and Johnson who is helping with many contributions for this MDG.

To overcome these obstacles with maternal health, countries must first invest in health systems to ensure universal access to healthcare before, during and after childbirth. Another aspect that will help would include simple changes in mothers' diets and better medical screening can dramatically reduce the number of children in poor countries who are born with genetic birth defects.

Great Knowledge from Gender Equality


Millennium Development Goal: Promot Gender Equality

This topic focused mainly on the ratios of girls to boys in primary and secondary education, but also to eliminate gender disparity.

The region that the focus was on was Pakistan due to its lowest girls education rate in the world

They brought up the idea to build more facilities and schools closer to teh girls and families homes to they wouldnt have to commute so far just for some education and to learn, then maybe the closer the schools, the higher the girls rate will rise. Another posed idea was to provide free books and school supplies for those children and families who cannot afford them. Lastly they proposed making some of the school non-formal schools just so the kids will feel more welcomed and have a more inviting feeling when they come to learn.

One of the main contributions of help was brought on by the World Bank which is a main funding sourse for this MDG and is supported by many countries around the world today.

As of today, with all of the help and donations from sponsors, the girl enrollment in schools has risen by 40%, and this MDG is on the right track to reach its untimate goal my 2015.

April 3, 2008

Covers Galore

One way to "wow" your audiance is by catching their attention right from the beginning. One way to accomplish that in a presentation, or even our final written product, is by designing a catchy cover sheet. The cover page needs to have color, pictures, and text, but it has to be designed in a way that is pleasing to the eye. Figuring out the layout of all the text and pictures is also a challenge one has to think about.

Below are three starting proposals for my group's cover sheet. I think we will take all three into consideration,and combine aspects from all of ours to develope our final cover sheet.

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March 13, 2008

Presenation Styles

For my research project I think the best way to show off and portray our message is through both a power point and a brochure. I think you need to make a brochure because it is a neat way to display the information. And by making it in paper form, you are allowing it to be portable and therefore people can take the brochure with you. To catch the attention of the viewers I would put a giant picture on the front, possibly of a small child, which shows off child mortality. Then the interior would contain both words and images to break up all the information being stated. I would fill the interior with only the useful facts, perhaps some stats and then some backround information on our goal to inform those who dont know about our goal.

Here is a possible image of what it could look like:

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As for the presentation, I would definately use a power point. This is the place where we would get into detail about how my group approached the project and our goal. We would talk about what is currently being done to imoprove the situation and also some of the designed ideas that are proposed.

Ultimately, with the use of two forms of data, I think the message gets across better. The brochure is used to catch the viewers attention and to inform them on the backround information, where as the powerpoint is for the in-depth creative side of the project that shows your ideas as approaches.

March 6, 2008

Blog Prompt #5

When I look around at the built environment, the first thing that draws my attention is all the well built buildings and standing structures which each serve their purpose and affect those that enter them. I do admire all the tall sky scrapers and commercial buildings, but what really defines me and what I'm interested in, are all the well crafted, unique homes that are built within our environment across the country. One of my favorite examples is the Frank Lloyd Wright home of Fallingwater.

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This home to me just puts me at awe. I love all of the features that Wright put into this home. The fact that he used clean lines throughout his construction just makes his design and work look flawless. And with the intertwining use of natural elements and materials, like the edgy stone, into the final design is briliant. I think the use of the water flowing through the home is very innovative and it makes the home one with the surrounding environment.

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The photos above are great examples of the clean lines of the materials and the rock stone in both the interior and exterior of the home.

This built environment affects me in several ways. It first affected me when i was younger because the sight of homes as spectacular as Frank Lloyd Wright inspired me to want to someday design homes just as exceptional and worthy, but also functional as his. It also affects be in the fact that to this day I am still drawn to the sight of new innovative homes. I love exploring and viewing the new techniques used in homes today verse in the years past. And I cant help but imagine designing homes that incorperate both new and old styles and techniques in the future.

So this environment that we live in today, which consists of all structures from large sky scrapers to malls, to homes, to sheds; all have an affect on someone everyday. The one thing that grabbed my attention at a young age was the wonderful design of well crafted homes in our society. These homes affect who I am today because I am on the path to follow in the footsteps of the great residential architects of my time. They have drawn me to want to design master pieces just as they did. I want to be able to achieve the feeling of success when you know that the home you designed is the best it can be, not only to you and your mind, but to the rest of the world and also the homeowners of the home.

February 28, 2008

Blog Promt #4

According to a 2005 census by the Institute for the Study of Homelessness and Poverty at the Weingart Center, I found the top homeless cities within the United States. They would include: Los Angeles with 91,000 homeless at count, New York with 48,155, Orange County with 34,898, and Detroit with 14,827 homeless people.

If I were given the opportunity to be released from the constrainsts of the architecture school, I would take a semester long trip across the United States and visit these four cities. When arriving in each town, all the architecture students would be devided up into teams and we would all work together to rebuild a portion of each town. This task would measure our ability not only to think on our toes, to be creative at a cheap cost and to develope the useful skills of what it takes to become an architect.

I chose such a task because someday I wish to be designing homes, not houses, but homes for families to live in and enjoy for a long time to come. It is just so heart warming to know that you are building a home for people just like you, to live in, and in some cases get off the streets.

In building these homes, we would not only gain knowledge of how homes are built, but we will gain the knowledge of the environment around us. Building houses in California is certainly going to be different than building homes in New York or even Detroit. So, we will get accustomed to zones and building codes and we will get familiar with all the people and forces needed to get the job done.

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This is a map showing the homeless areas within Los Angeles, California. We would obviously choose an area in purple to build in and improve upon.

Hopefully we can prevent these types of things from happening in the future, by just helping out one step at a time.

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I hope that someday our school can be apart of a program such as this where the students not only gain education on architecture around the country, but help out those in more dire need of something belonging to them, like a HOME!

February 21, 2008

Blog 3

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What is Child Mortality? It is the rate of deaths per 1,000 inhabitants of children under five years of age

In our world today nearly 11 million children under the age of 5 die in the world every year - well over 1,200 every hour most from easly preventable or treatable causes.

First coming into this assignment, I didn't know much on the topic of child mortality, but after reading some depressing stories about young children, I couldn't help but read on. You don't normally hear too much about what's happening on the other side of the world. When in reality, it is a huge issue that millions of kids face every year. Just the fact that these young children all around the world are dying so young, for no reason hurts me.

"Research and experience show that six million of the almost 11 million children who die each year could be saved by low-tech, evidence-based, cost-effective measures such as vaccines, antibiotics, micronutrient supplementation, insecticide-treated bed nets and improved family care and breastfeeding practices."

In doing this extensive research project, I will do my best to become involved in this tragic nation wide issue, and I do hope that within the next few years the child mortality rate will drop significantly.

Here is a song that is dedicated to reducing child mortality:

Goal 4: Reduce child mortality
KUNG SANA’Y
Performed by Sharon Cuneta
Lyrics: Jingle Buena
Music: Mike Villegas
Download WMA 2.88mb

After listening to this song, I could understand it at all due to it being in another lanjuage, but just ly listening to the singers lyrics, you could feel in her voice the emotion she puts in and you can just imagine her singing about the helpless children around the world. I really found this song to be very warming to listen to.

I also found some lyrics from a song that really show the child's side of the situation:

I'm not scared of dying
And I, don't really care
If it' s peace you find in dying
Well then, let the time be near

It continues in the chorus with:

And when I die, and when I'm gone
There'll be, one child born
In this world
To carry on, to carry on

After reading these few lines, you tend to side with the child, and how brave they are and need to be.


February 14, 2008

Blog Promt #2

In August of 2007 a terrable tragity occurred involving the collapse of the 35-W bridge in Minneapolis, MN. According to investigaters, they discovered that gusset plates at eight different joint locations in the main center span were fractured. The undersized gusset plates were found at eight of the 112 nodes on the main trusses of the bridge. Sixteen of the gusset plates - two at each node - were about half the thickness required and were too thin to provide the safety expected in the properly-designed bridge, according to NTSB.

This bridge collapse isn't the only design problem in the Twin Cities. Consider the I-35W bridge alone: According to Minnesota Public Radio, Minnesota will get $195 million from the feds to help replace the fallen I-35W bridge. On another note, Minnesota just finished inspecting its 4,000 bridges and found 15 that needed to be closed, repaired or replaced. While low-volume bridges, they represent a financial burden to be addressed. As you can see, the inspections and care of other bridges in Minnesota are also receiving the same poor attention as the 35-w bridge, and that is not acceptable. One would think, what exactly are the workers doing on the job, if they aren't inspecting and keeping up with the bridges like they are supposed to? I guess we will never know though.

In order to eliminate the problem of poorly designed infrastructures, we as Minnesotan's and American's need to make sure and have trust in our engineers and architects; even thouth it can be hard at times. We are holding them responsible for (like the bridge case) our lives. Supposidly, the bridge's mistake was made over four decades ago with the engineer that designed the bridge. But it wasn't all his/her fault. Throughout the past few years, there hadn't been very good inspections on the bridge, or they weren't taken very seriously. In the future; after going through such a terrible ordeal, I hope that workers will take more precaution and will be more precise in their inspections of not just bridges, but all infrastructures around the country, and I hope they will learn from this mistake.

February 5, 2008

Blog Promt #1

When I think of a city, I imagine the heavy flow of traffic on every street, as well as on every sidewalk. The energy that comes from the busy work people. Whether they are briskly walking to work as they are half an hour late, or they are throwing themselves in the street just to flag down a taxi to get home. Everywhere you look in the cities, you see some form of energy being carried and transformed from each person to the next.