Dr. Shamma Alam, International Studies

First-Year Seminar: Should We Fear Globalization in the Twenty-First Century? 

Course Syllabi for First Year Seminar

I participated in the Valley and Ridge program as part of my preparation to create a new first-year seminar titled “Should We Fear Globalization in the Twenty-First Century.” The goal of this seminar is to introduce the first-year students to many facets of globalization, such as trade, migration, technological advancements, and sustainability concerns arising from these factors. When I was preparing this course before the workshop, I was aware of some of the key sustainability issues that should be covered in class, but I was not sure how to present those issues and how to structure those issues into my broad-ranging course. The Valley and Ridge program helped me structure a focused course with relevant course content. Through interactions with faculty members across different disciplines, I was able to learn new ideas and course content that I was able to integrate in my new course.

With the help of this workshop, I was able to create about four weeks of focused content for my FYSM. I will be covering the following sustainability issues in this course: understanding why global warming is increasingly becoming an urgent concern, understanding the water-food-energy nexus, understanding the megatrends of the near future regarding world resources, understanding social sustainability by examining changes in world population, understanding how technological innovations are likely to affect sustainability concerns, and examining some of the U.S. climate change policies and its implications. With the help of this V&R workshop, I was also made aware of a number of useful resources available on campus that I am integrating into my course. For example, with the help of CSE staff, my class will be doing a tour of sustainability initiatives on campus. We will also be attending sustainability related lectures, such as the Priestly lecture titled “The Good News on Energy, Environment and our Future.” Moreover, I will be taking advantage of several engaging sustainability related video content available in our library.