One thing I really enjoyed about my topic on food policy was discovering the hidden side of food. For example, “natural” foods are not organic. “Natural” is a marketing tool to make people think they’re eating healthy. It’s a narrow word that doesn’t include how food is produced or processed. We also know that advertisers target sugary cereals to children watching cartoons on Saturday mornings. And advertisers market sugary drinks to children and teenagers. But did you know that food as a national security issue??
As you may know, Dr. Patti and I decided on an alt-ac (alternative academic career) life after earning our doctorates. These careers include jobs outside of academia (research or administrative positions in the public or private sectors). For example, academic affairs (advising, admissions, recruitment), student affairs (career services, international services), research and developments (grant writing, fund-raising) and business affairs (president’s office, community affairs) fall into this group. But what if you want something else? What if you want to find creative scholarly projects? How do you find that career path?
Food swamps reflect the imbalance between fast food restaurants and healthy food choices. A few weeks ago, I wrote a blog called Food Swamps: A New Urban Reality. A study by the Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity concluded that food swamps contribute to obesity in adult populations in low-income areas. Food swamps are a better predictor of obesity rates than food deserts or areas with little access to healthy and affordable food. But what happens when you shrink the number of fast food places in a neighborhood? How does that affect the obesity rate? Does food policy solve a problem or create new ones?
* Note: This piece was originally posted by Dr. Patti Mason in 2016. Recently, I spoke to a colleague who is a talented and skilled health professional. She is an older worker looking for a job. She helps children learn about nutrition, give presentations at conferences, and receives awards from businesses and professional organizations. She would be an asset to any organization. But she’s struggling with doubt and self-esteem. I found a job and sent her the link – it looked like a good fit for her skills. The good news is that she applied and was interviewed last week! I am re-posting this blog to remind people that older workers have added value. It’s still hard to find good workers and age is just a number.
~~~ Dr. Bessie ~~~
Age is the most widely experienced myth in the workplace. Although older employees are more loyal, reliable, and committed compared to their younger colleagues, research suggests stereotypes still exist.
This week’s blog is about advice from a seasoned academic advisor (SAA). I wondered how that advice compared to advice Dr. Patti and I share on this blog. While the dissertation process (SAA calls it dissertating) feels like a mystery, it isn’t. When you start the process or when you’re deep in the bowels of it, you don’t know what you don’t know. You don’t know what questions to ask, what ideas are important, what a good research project looks like. And that’s the real mystery: When do you know what you know? When does the light goes on and your thinking starts to flow? When do you feel like you’ve got this?
When I started my dissertation on urban agriculture, I learned about the different ways that a city can grow food. Urban agriculture is growing, processing and distributing food in the city. It also is a link between agriculture and urban development – housing, commercial and business development, schools. Urban agriculture is also about food production and urban planning. It includes the suburbs and fringe areas near the city. Urban agriculture means growing food in containers, window sills, backyards, rooftops, freight containers, farms and community gardens. In 2018, I wonder how urban agriculture is evolving and if it can be a stable food source for the future. Below is a snapshot of urban agriculture today...
Anyone in education knows that its culture is in turmoil. Critics of public funds for higher education make the claim that college is a waste of time. Compared to trade schools, college doesn’t guarantee a job, a good income, a retirement plan, or peace of mind. I’ve written a blog, School is Not for Everyone about education as a personal choice. Higher education has a culture of academic snobbery and leaders who support this outdated culture. And part of that culture includes scholarly writing – bad scholarly writing.