Water and Food: An Exploration of Hong Kong
Cost: $1500.00 (approximate) includes airfare and tuition (for most Whittier Students)
Professor Cheryl Swift
May 15, 2016-June 5th 2016
Pre-req: Envs 100 or Bio 251
This course explores the culture of food in Hong Kong, and examines the role of traditional shrimp farming practices in maintaining one of the most important mangrove forests in southeast Asia. We will spend about 40% of our time in Hong Kong working with an elementary school that hosts a certified organic roof top garden, and working on an organic farm. We will be spending the other 60% of our time working on self designed research projects in the Mai Po wetlands. This course provides an opportunity to engage in service learning both at the elementary school, but also with WWF Hong Kong. It also provides an opportunity to conduct self designed research projects in one of the most important wetlands in the world.
Hong Kong provides a great laboratory for understanding the problems of sustainability in an urban setting. Because land is so expensive, farming is not considered an important land use. Yet, people in Hong Kong are aware of issues of food safety concerning food that comes from mainland China. So, the class provides an opportunity to look at unique solutions to the problem of land use planning and food security such as the elementary school garden. In addition, my contacts in Hong Kong will enable us to spend a day working on an organic farm. The Mai Po wetlands offer a great laboratory to understand wetland function and structure. We are welcomed by the director of WWF Hong Kong that oversees the wetland. So, location has everthing to do with this class.