Thursday, October 16, 2008


Delia Saenz, the director of the Intergroup Relations Center at ASU, defines diversity at ASU in terms of representation and Inclusion. “Representation is the extent to which our students, faculty, and administrators proportionately reflect the regional and national populations served by our public institution. Inclusion entails creating a positive learning and working environment, and a climate that is respectful of, and welcoming to, all members of our university.”

If you go to school at ASU, you can’t help but be immersed in an ethnically diverse setting. ASU is devoted to the representation of many different cultures on campus. As one of the nation’s most diverse public schools, more than 25% of its student body is colored. Students here come from all 50 states, and 141 countries from around the world. Maya Angelou, an American poet and civil rights leader once said, "We all should know that diversity makes for a rich tapestry, and we must understand that all the threads of the tapestry are equal in value no matter what their color." ASU is one of those rich tapestries, as you can’t walk ten feet without seeing someone who is of a different ethnicity than you.

Living in a diverse environment helps you to gain other’s perspective. You can learn a lot from speaking with someone from another country. For example, someone who’s financial situation wasn’t that great might remind you not to take the things that you have for granted. On the other end of the spectrum, hearing about another country, like Brazil, might intrigue you so much that you learn Portuguese and take a 3 month vacation checking out the Amazon.

Stereotypes are a major challenge to the acceptance of people for who they are. Believing something about a person because of a pre-conceived notion, without ever talking to them, is just plain ignorance. It is unfair to judge someone based on what you heard from someone else. Getting to know someone for who they are, and not making judgments based on stereotypes can only be good for you. Who knows, maybe you’ll make a new friend.

Global Engagement

Global engagement is essentially how you are connected in the world. From the shoes that you’re wearing that were made in India, to the war in Iraq, we are all involved in global engagement to some degree or another, whether you like it or not.

Being more globally engaged can only be good for you. It helps you to appreciate what you have and where you live. It makes you more knowledgeable of your surroundings, and more understanding of other’s perspectives. As Kofi Annan, Secretary-General for the UN, states,"We have to choose between a global market driven only by calculations of short-term profit, and one which has a human face." Gaining real-world experience in global engagement also helps us to make sounds business decisions; better decisions that one could make based out of any book that you might read.
An example of global engagement is sustainability, an
issue that affects us all. Sustainability is the balance of economic growth with environmental safety and social development. The people of earth as a whole, not any individual country, are responsible for the environment and what it will look like for future generations. Will people years from now have to find alternate sources of energy because our generation has used up fossil fuels? Questions like these can only be addressed on a global level, as one country alone can’t make or break the balance between the environment and the global economy.

There are many ways that you can become more globally engaged! For example, you can simply eat at an international restaurant, attend cultural events, or volunteer at an international organization. Another way to get more involved globally engaged at ASU, is to join the study-abroad program. A study abroad program does so much for you in that it presents new opportunities, it’s a great learning experience, and completely immerses you in a different culture.

In conclusion, becoming globally engaged can give you a new view on things, open doors, brighten horizons, and at worst make you more aware of the planet we live on. As Anthony Rock, the VP of Global Engagement at ASU says, “You will want to have the ability to solve problems, whether they are on a local or global scale, and to work effectively with other cultures.”


As Dan O’Neil, an entrepreneurial coach of the ASU Edson Student Entrepreneur Initiative programs, stated, “Entrepreneurship is the act of creating new ventures that generate and capture value by realizing opportunities through creativity, innovational, knowledge, skill, and passion while assembling resources and managing risks.” So what does this mean, exactly? The entrepreneurial spirit drives the American Economy. It is what makes someone start a new business, invent a new product, or create an organization that they envision.

If the idea of a career as an entrepreneur makes you cringe, then you are probably trying to picture yourself sitting in an office all day, pushing papers and answering phone class. In reality, an entrepreneur does work a lot harder than others, usually more than from 9-5 on Monday through Friday. That hard work and dedication, however, is what turned Bob Meyrowitz into the founder the UFC, for example. That same persistence and innovation is also what made Hugh Hefner a fortune as the owner, and Editor-in-Chief of Playboy magazine. Entrepreneurs see a vision, and then they work hard to turn that vision into a reality, taking risks along the way.

Entrepreneurs decide which product/ service to promote in their new business based on three parts of the global market context; the economy, environment, and society. The economy deals with globalization, such as the world-wide web, which makes it possible to do business around the world. Entrepreneurs also take an environmental view to their businesses, and sometimes provide solutions to earth problems, such as pollution. They might even just have a more eco-friendly approach to how they run their business. The society approach deals with the developed world, and the developing world. This means that some people face challenges like poverty or sickness that their entrepreneurial venture might be able to help address.

As a student at Arizona State University, we have almost 60 entrepreneur related courses that we can take, and five different certificate programs to choose from in entrepreneurship. ASU has a number of programs to help all types of entrepreneur students start their own business. Last year alone, ASU helped 28 students to start their own business. The Entrepreneurial Advantage project, for example, helps ASU student lead teams to develop business concepts, prototype projects, and other entrepreneurial ventures.

Monday, October 13, 2008


“Sustainability development can be defined as developing in such a way that we can achieve our objectives today without compromising the ability of future generations to reach their own goals.” (The Bruntland Report (1987)) What does this mean exactly? Specifically, sustainable development consists of environmental sustainability, economic prosperity, and social equity.

Deforestation and a general disregard towards the environment is also another issue facing sustainability. “Half the world's original forest cover of some three billion hectares has been destroyed in the last 40 years; only 20% of what remains is undisturbed by human activities.”(New Internationalist, Nov. 2000) In addition to looking much prettier than anything man made, trees help to absorb Co2 emissions, and create the oxygen that we breathe. With our forests dwindling, the quality of our air will just continue to decrease.

As the world’s population grows, our resources aren’t, quite frankly. As a matter of fact energy use and the global population are both growing exponentially. In 1950 there were 2.5 billion people on the planet, now there are over 6 billion, and in about another 40 years there are expected to be somewhere close to 9 billion people! At this growth rate we must be aware of the possibility of a food scarcity, let alone an energy scarcity.

We all must make choices have less of an impact on the environment. These simple choices, for example, are to carpool, take public transportation, or walk instead of driving your own car. You can also watch how long you take showers, turn the lights off when you’re done, and not use the air conditioner/heater so frequently. If we all chip in a little, it will make a big difference on the energy being consumed by us on the whole. The development of alternate energy sources would also help to alleviate the global energy crisis, such as windmills, solar panels, and other, undiscovered sources.

To ensure that generations down the road have the lifestyle that we hope they would have, we must ask ourselves how our decisions today will affect impact the environment. Will it be able to replenish itself fast enough to meet our ever-growing demands? Will we eventually be forced to walk rather than drive when our supply of fossil fuels runs out? Of course, no one has a definite answer, but being aware of our fuel consumption habits today could mean a brighter tomorrow.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Succeeding at ASU

Getting good grades is not the only aspect to being successful as a student at ASU. Time management, proper study habits, and balancing work with your social life are all important to becoming successful as a college student. Going to class, and getting your homework in on time are the most basic ways to make the grade, but being truly successful is so much more.

The transition between high school and college might be one of the biggest challenges that a student may face. No longer does a bell ring to remind you that it's class time, your parents don't get on your case about finishing your homework, and your teachers don't care that your dog ate your homework. A great quote that exemplifies what college is all about is, "Formal education will make you a living. Self-education will make you a fortune." (Jim Rohn) In college, you quickly learn that you could just go through the steps to get by in your classes and get your degree. If you want to get everything you can out of the time you’re in college, you must teach yourself something every day. You teach yourself to manage your time wisely, to be accountable for your actions, and to become completely self-reliant.

Time management is by far the most important aspect to being successful as a student at ASU. As college students, we have 2-3 hours of homework for each hour in class, which can mean anywhere from 45-60 hours of schoolwork a week! This is in addition to the part-time job that most students have to pay for their own food, and help pay for tuition/housing. On top of that, some students are committed to organizations that require several hours of work each week.

Motivation is another important factor in the equation for success. If, in your heart of hearts, you really don't want to ace all of your classes, then you won't. Motivation, determines priorities, and dedication to those priorities determines the grade you will receive.

In conclusion, there are many factors in determining your success at ASU. Good grades, completing homework, going to class, time management, commitment, dedication, and motivation all contribute to what you will become as a college student. "Take charge of your success at is up to you." (Afsaneh Nahavandi)

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Academic Integrity

What is the price of a college degree? For some of us, it is some $20,000 a year and up that we have saved over the years for tuition. For others it is spending our summer days working to pay for housing and food. Some of us dedicated ourselves to countless hours of studying to get an academic scholarship, and few of us spent countless hours at practice to earn an athletic scholarship. For some of us, however, a college degree may come with the price of one's integrity.

"Academic integrity is what we do, what we say, and what we say we do". (Don Galer) We have all been tempted to "check the answers" of our friend's homework, or "just take a quick peek" at the kid's test on the desk next to you. Unfortunately, some of us fail to realize that high school is over. Academic dishonesty at the college level is grounds to fail a course, or even worse, you might receive an "XE" grade. This grade appears on your official transcript and prevents you from participating in extra-curricular activities and is only removable by petition to the dean. A grade of "XE" is a major red flag to any prospective employers once you get your degree, making it more difficult to get a good job.

Types of academic integrity range from the old school tricks such as writing the answers to a test on your hand or your pencil, to taking a test for someone else or doing their homework. One of the forms of academic integrity that gains more gravity as we continue our education is giving credit when you cite sources, something that wasn't nearly as important in high school.Furthermore, cheating in any form is completely unfair to those who paid their dues, so to speak. If someone were to cheat, they would really be slighting themselves too. They don't learn the material, and once you’re in the real world, you are expected to apply that material in your career.

In conclusion, getting good grades is important to us all, but it shouldn't come with the price of our integrity. It is better for everyone to fight the urge to cheat, even though it may seem like an easy way out. Thomas Jefferson has captured the essence of academic integrity at ASU, "Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom."

Saturday, September 6, 2008


Hello I'm Gavin. I am a freshman at ASU and my degree is in Global Business and Leadership Management. I stay at the west campus during the year, but I am going back to New Hampshire for the summer. I play racquetball, tennis and I also like to make delicious food back at Las Casas.