Project Title: Haven’t come up with a clever title yet, but it is in the works! ….(Park your car, it’s not too far!)?
Project Participant: Alexandra Bishop
Overview and Description:
For my project this year in Geography 360, I would like to raise awareness about the usage of your legs or a bicycle as the primary means of transportation in getting to class instead of using a car. Personally, I do drive to class sometimes, and every time I go to park at Selby stadium or anywhere else near the academic side of campus, I notice parking lots that are full of students’ vehicles. I feel that is important to raise awareness about this issue because right now the world is beginning to run out of natural resources such as gas, and walking to class could have a large impact on the amount of resources we consume at Ohio Wesleyan. The basic idea behind this project is that it is very important to protect the resources that we have, so we don’t run out! If more people walked to class instead of driving, they would save a lot of money that they would normally spend on gas, and have a lot more money to spend on other personal items! Therefore, this is a win-win situation! In order to accomplish raising awareness about this issue, I would like to send out an all-campus email which would include a survey asking people how they get to class: biking, walking, or driving. I would also like to spend days counting the numbers of cars in the parking lot of Selby and other areas where students park, then separate the types of cars into small cars, small SUVs, large SUVs, and trucks. After doing this, I would search the average gas mileage that these cars get, in order to figure out the cost of gas that these students are spending. I will also figure out the amount of miles that a student would drive to class and back everyday, separating groups into dorms, SLUs, and other student housing such as fraternities, in order to calculate how much money each student would spend on gas per week. After doing this, I would post flyers around campus with information in a “Did You Know” fashion about the money they are spending by driving, and possibly also include the amount of calories that could be burned while walking (i have a Nike+ watch which counts the amount of calories burned), in order to provide another incentive. After posting flyers and trying to raise awareness, I will continue to count the number of cars in parking areas, to determine if the numbers have changed. This project is meaningful to me as I realize how much we are affecting the environment in emissions and usage of natural resources, and I think that it is also a project that can easily be continued in future years.
I will begin the project by collecting data through surveying students with a campus-wide email, as well as counting cars in student parking areas around campus. After doing this, it is time to separate types of cars, then figure out mileage from residence areas to the designated parking areas. I will then research the average gas mileage that each type of car gets to figure out the weekly cost of driving to class, and figure out calories burned from walking instead of driving, in order to create a flyer that can be posted all around campus that will raise awareness for this issue. I will make sure to post flyers in all popular places around campus, so that everyone will have a chance to see the impact they are making when they drive to class. After raising awareness, I will continue to count the cars several times per week, and continue to post different types of flyers that would encourage students to walk instead of driving. When the project is finished, I will have plenty of data that we can use to determine if the awareness has changed people’s’ minds about wasting our natural resources and polluting the environment.
As I have just recently decided to use this as my project (Monday), I have not had time to find many sources on the issue. I will be able to use resources to find gas mileage, and other informative sources about the pros and cons between driving and walking. My project is still in the works, and I am open to any suggestions that anyone might have!