Students in Associate Professor of Political Science Pablo Toral’s Global Political Ecology course recently traveled to Minneapolis to meet up with Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness. The Friends are watching the development of a couple of mining projects on the edge of the Boundary Waters Canoe Wilderness Area, and asked Toral’s students to prepare a report on the economics and politics of mining, with a focus on four metals: platinum, palladium, copper, and nickel. The students were also asked to create a brochure that the Friends can use to educate the community about mining.
The trip fulfilled a class assignment that requires students to conduct an internship with an environmental non-governmental organization, Toral says. Over the course of their time with the group, students delivered a presentation, took questions from the members of the organization, and provided expert analysis and advice.
“Their presentation was flawless,” Toral says. “They conducted themselves in a very professional manner. They explained everything by providing accurate data on mining and made use of some of the concepts and theories that they learned in the course to help the Friends understand mining.”
Paul Danicic, the FBWW director, later told Toral that he was very impressed with the Beloiters he encountered. "I feel we learned a few things too,” Danicic wrote--he then went on to invite the Beloit students to apply for internships with the organization.
The students in this project were Phillip Amdsen, Jonathon Hammon, Nora Holte, and Sophie O'Connor