God and the Natural World

This is it! We are about to experience the final full week of new colloquium material before we reach the second round of student presentations. And we are also about to welcome two additional guest speakers to our classroom!

On Wednesday, Environmental Biology Professor Barbara Sullivan-Watts will join us to discuss our relationship with the natural world. Here is her autobiographical information:

I have degrees in Biology (Catholic U), Environmental Engineering (Johns Hopkins), and Oceanography (Oregon State U). As a research scientist at the U.S. EPA and URI I studied and published on the impacts of pollution and climate change on Narragansett Bay and Georges Bank (the fishing ground off the coast of Massachusetts). Now I teach Environmental Biology 121 at PC and spend as much time in the out-of-doors as possible, including monitoring shore bird populations – osprey – a success story of environmental management due to banning DDT, and piping plovers who still need our help.

Before we meet Barbara, in advance of Wednesday’s class session, please read an article about the piping plover. It was written by a native of Cape Cod who studies Environmental Humanities and Film and Media Studies at Whitman College.

In addition, to prepare for Wednesday’s class, please review the Spring 2017 Report of the Audubon Society of Rhode Island. You can download it from the Documents folder of our blog site; it is saved as the handout entitled Drowning In Place.

Then, on Thursday, PC Masters in Theology graduate William Patenaude will join us to discuss our relationship with God and its impact on the sustainability of our planet. Bill is an environmental engineer with the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management, and the author of a blog entitled Catholic Ecology. Here is his autobiographical information.

Before we meet Bill, in advance of Thursday’s class, please review a blog posting by Bill entitled Pope Francis Challenges The World. Then watch the brief video at the bottom of that web page, and click on the link immediately above the video to find and read the Pope’s address.

God, the natural world, and sustainability. That’s a nice summation for our entire course, isn’t it? We still have a few weeks to go, but we are certainly heading into the home stretch.

P.S. Here is a brief administrative reminder. Our 5:30 section will begin and end 15 minutes later than usual this week. We will convene at 5:45 pm and end at 7:20 pm.