Infrastructure – Our Lives

James Houser
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Most of us are blissfully ignorant of the infrastructure around us that delivers the goods and services we are so dependent on for our modern lifestyle. It is the quality of that infrastructure we take so much for granted that gives us the quality of life we enjoy in this country and is often the primary reason that developing countries have problems with public health, safe drinking water and market development. Few people realize the extent of the expense and labor that is required in the installation and maintenance of this infrastructure and yet all of us are dependent on it for our drinking water, transportation, energy, food, communication and waste removal. It is not an issue often discussed in public forums or in political debates because things like waste water treatment plants are not “sexy” or “hot-button” issues for voters, but that is because the public at large is ignorant about how important facilities like waste water treatment facilities are in maintaining the quality of their life, public health and a clean environment. The course will serve to introduce students to the technology that affects their world and their lives and will introduce a global perspective as the issue of infrastructure is explored on a global scale.

The course will be divided into six sections dealing with specific aspects of infrastructure: (1) Water, (2) Waste, (3) Transportation, (4)Power, (5) Communication, and (6) Food.

The nature and implication of these six components of infrastructure will be examined on a local, national and international scale, exploring how the quality of these infrastructure components affects the quality of a society. The following perspectives will be used to explore infrastructure issues: History, Current state, Future needs, Policy, Political and Budget Implications, Social and Public Health, Economics and Markets, Environmental, and Engineering and Science.

Contact FYS

The First Year Seminar is part of the General Education Program located in Anne Belk Hall, Room 250.

Phone: 828-262-2028

Our mailing address:
First Year Seminar
ASU Box 32065
Appalachian State University
Boone, NC 28608

Director of First Year Seminar:
Dr. Martha McCaughey

QEP Global Learning