MDG Presentation Reflection
After listening to the honors class present their Millenium Development Goal projects in class, I feel like i can respond to a few of them in different ways.
The first one that interested me was the group that had a goal of improving Minneapolis slums through sustainability. One of the things that really interested me about this project was the vicinity. I am interested how they planned to change something in Minneapolis. It was also interesting how they chose the Cedar-Riverside Apartments, which are just a couple blocks from the West Bank Campus. I was suprised that when these apartment buildings were built, they were used by high and middle class occupants. This is obviously a far different clientel than what occupies the building now. These apartments are now pretty low income apartment. There are multiple problems with trying to build low income housing. First of all, there is always the sayuing "not in my backyard", which means that nobody wants low income housing around them, and the problems that low income housing may bring. Also, apartment buildings which may be affordable are being made into more expensive condominiums that are far out of the price range of low income families. These are serious problems that lead to the shortage of low income housing. Looking back at the Cedar-Riverside apartments, the goup brought up different ideas on how to make the apartments more sustainable. Many ideas were thrown around, with water and energy conservation leading the ideas. Simple things like energy saving light bulbs and conserving shower heads are things that could help save resources. They also talked about replacing all the random colored plywood on the exterior to make a uniform facade. One other suggestion was to put in more efficient elevators, because the old ones are slow and don't always work. When I was listening to this presentation, I kind of thought that all this group had really done is gone on the energy star website and looked at products that saved energy and said "lets put that in the building". I felt like they really didn't put too much thought or effort into the solution. I also wondered about who would pay for all these changes, considering it is a low income apartment building.
One presentation that I thought was very good was the presentation on child mortality. Even though the video they made did not work during their presentation did not work, I looked at it afterwards and I was very impressed. The images were very powerfull and the music fit very well with it, and the text they had in it was very nice. I just thought this was a step above a presentation on powerpoint, and it brings the message across in a different way. I also thought that the layout of their presentation was very strong. The images were powerful, and it was not cluttered with too much text. They brough out very good stats and it was overall a presentation that caught my attention right away. The area they decided to concentrate on was Sierra Leone, and the numbers for child mortality there are just unbelievable. For every 1000 children under the age of five, there are 270 deaths. This is just horrible. I thought that they did a good job of showing what was being done right now, with the organizations like UNICEF and Action Against Hunger working to help this issue. Their solutions were very sensible and realistic, with ideas of immuniztion, mosquito nets, and promoting health habits. These are not expensive things to do, and I belive that these actions could really help to reduce the child mortality rate. Overall I thought this was the best presentation of the day, with the images and the whole layout really catching the audience's attention.