Nevia Selmon

ENST 246 : Environmental Activism

Points Total

  • 0 Today
  • 0 This Week
  • 840 Total

Participant Impact

  • up to
    300
    minutes
    spent exercising
  • up to
    1
    public officials or leaders
    contacted
  • up to
    1
    documentaries
    watched
  • up to
    8
    more servings
    of fruits and vegetables
  • up to
    220
    minutes
    being mindful
  • up to
    580
    gallons of water
    have been saved
  • up to
    4
    whole food meals
    consumed
  • up to
    140
    minutes
    spent learning
  • up to
    8
    pounds of CO2
    have been saved

Challenges

Simplicity

Meditate

I will meditate or create a moment of silence for 10 minute(s) each day to reflect on things important to me.

COMPLETED 22 OF 90
DAILY CHALLENGE

Water

5-Minute Showers

I will save up to 20 gallons (75 L) of water each day by taking 5-minute showers.

COMPLETED 29 OF 90
DAILY CHALLENGE

Energy

Power Down the Computer

I will power down my computer and monitor when not using it for more than 2 hours, saving up to (1.1) lbs of CO2 each day that I do this.

COMPLETED 8 OF 90
DAILY CHALLENGE

Health

Happiness

I will write down three things every day that I am grateful for, or send one email every day thanking or praising someone.

COMPLETED 21 OF 90
DAILY CHALLENGE

Simplicity

Go for a Daily Walk

I will take a walk for 15 minutes each day.

COMPLETED 20 OF 90
DAILY CHALLENGE

Nature

Support Local Pollinators

At least 30% of crops and 90% of flowering plants rely on pollinators to produce fruit. I will spend 20 minutes researching which plants support local native pollinators and plant some in my yard or local community garden.

Completed
One-Time Challenge

Nature

Forage for My Food

I will use the resource below to find where I can forage for my own food locally.

Completed
One-Time Challenge

Health

Avoid refined sugar

I will adopt a diet free of refined sugars, which eliminates sweetened beverages, candy, and processed foods.

COMPLETED 4 OF 90
DAILY CHALLENGE

Food

Whole Foods Diet

I will enjoy 1 meal(s) each day free of processed foods.

COMPLETED 4 OF 90
DAILY CHALLENGE

Community

Express My Support

I will find out who in my state makes decisions that impact the environment and express my support for more environmental actions.

Completed
One-Time Challenge

Simplicity

Needs Vs. Wants

I will adopt a "Needs Vs. Wants" approach and only buy things I need.

COMPLETED 12 OF 90
DAILY CHALLENGE

Health

Support Pollution Reduction

I will spend at least 15 minutes learning about water and air quality issues in my area, how they are impacting human and environmental health, and how I can help.

Completed
One-Time Challenge

Simplicity

De-Clutter My Home or Dorm Room

I will de-clutter, clean, and donate or recycle unneeded items in my home or dorm room.

COMPLETED 4 OF 90
DAILY CHALLENGE

Create Your Own

Decluttering my mail

In order to attempt to better organize my life, I will unsubscribe from the clutter of mail that plagues my days.

Uncompleted
Create Your Own Challenge

Health

More Fruits and Veggies

I will eat a heart healthy diet by adding 4 cup(s) of fruits and vegetables each day to achieve at least 4 cups per day.

COMPLETED 2 OF 90
DAILY CHALLENGE

Food

Watch a Documentary about Food Sovereignty

I will watch 1 documentary(ies) about food sovereignty: the right of local peoples to control their own food systems including markets, ecological resources, food cultures and production methods.

Completed
One-Time Challenge

Waste

Go Paperless

I will reduce the amount of paper mail that I receive by opting into paperless billing and ending unwanted subscriptions.

Completed
One-Time Challenge

Transportation

Car Share

I will sign up for a car-sharing service or organize car sharing with my neighbors or classmates to cut down on the number of vehicles on the road.

Uncompleted
One-Time Challenge

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  • Nevia Selmon 3/06/2019 9:38 PM
    ENST Unit 2 Mid-Journal 

    709 words

    This was definitely the most difficult week, in terms of the surplus of challenges on top of the mass amount of work that other classes and activities have amounted to the lasts two weeks. Speaking on the daily task of taking a walk, I have been much more mindful on these walks, outside of my usual walks. I usually put my headphones in and autonomously go from one location to the next. I cannot imagine walking from the ELC to my dorm or another building without the background of music. I feel the constant need to be multitasking and doing as much as I can in each moment. When we are in such an intensive environment, it leads to these mentalities. I was thinking of times when I do not listen to music, and it is always when I am in nature and hiking. I want to be fully enriched by my surroundings. It is almost as if I am using my music to dull the monotony of daily campus life. I do not remember a day that has past where I have not had a constant immersion of music between or during the many activities that I have completed. Upon looking on the resources for walking daily, I found that walking for 30 minutes each day improves the digestive system. 
    On another note, going paperless has had its drawbacks and pluses. There were some unavoidable instances where I needed to print and hand in an essay that I had written, but for most other tasks I was able to keep it all online. Due to this challenge, I have been a lot more mindful of the many places on campus that paper is unnecessarily used. In the bison and commons, there are paper slips that have to continually be filled out with your order. Each person, order, meal, and day starts to add up. All of this paper used can easily be avoided, if ipads were used to take orders instead. This would not only be saving paper, but also would be more efficient. People could have their order’s connected to their phones and get a notification when it is done. This would help prevent waste, from those who leave before getting there food and paying when the wait is too long.  
    I have not yet had the time to devote to fully cleaning/ decluttering my room and mail. Before I leave for break on friday, I plan to take home all of the clothes that have been sitting in my drawers and never used. I have been especially stressed with the amount of “stuff” that I have been aware of that I have. I wish that there were sharing boxes in every dorm or common room to allow for me to put the clothes I no longer wear in, and exchange it for something new. This would promote the idea of not fueling capitalism and this materialistic world. It is much more sustainable to thrift and borrow clothes. One of the resources for decluttering explained the healthy aspects of decluttering. I personally have a lot of trouble getting rid of things because I feel as though I have or have had a personal connection with each of my things. The article mentioned that you should thank objects and the purposes they've served in their lives before giving them away. I think that this will help me to feel more at ease when getting rid of my possessions in my decluttering process. 
    I have noticed that when I do not have enough time in my week, I let a lot of things fall by the waistline, that would actually have benefitted my health and work attack more. The first few weeks I was adamant about meditating daily, but the last week I have been stress with my workload and constantly running from class to the gym to a meeting to doing homework. My mind was constantly buzzing with what I would do next, that I couldn’t even sit still enough to allow a meditation to calm and refocus my attention. This is definitely something that I want to work on. Being able to meditate in the wake of stress and heavy workload would immensely benefit my mental health. 



  • Nevia Selmon 2/27/2019 8:36 PM
    Word Count: 551 

    This week was one of the most difficult weeks so far. The first two weeks were a breeze compared to the number and choice of challenges. The one time challenges that I added on to this week were: avoid refined sugar, avoid processed food in one meal, and need verses want. I was excited to attempt these healthier lifestyle choices. I soon learned that it is extremely difficult to eat, even a single meal that isn’t processed with the all-time access meal plan that all first-years are required to have. For breakfast, I usually grab a bagel with peanut butter and jelly before I head to class. A bagel is processed, and the jelly that is provided probably has added sugar. I would eat oatmeal, but it is not appetizing in the moosh format that it is found at Bostwick Marketplace. I am vegan, and have been for 3.5 years now, and eating at the cafe under added restrictions added another difficult dimension. I have problems finding food that is vegan and properly labelled, let alone that has no added sugar and isn’t processed. I eat tofu frequently for protein, and that is quite processed. The only unprocessed food available would be a salad, to which could not sustain me day in and day out for all of my meals. I really wanted to take these steps in making a lifestyle change, and will hopefully be able to in the near future. 
    One of my one time challenges was supporting pollution reduction by learning about water and air quality issues around my area. I originally tried to use the attached link in resources to find out the quality in Lewisburg, PA but it was not assessed. I did my hometown of Orange, CT instead. Ct’s air quality was 60.7% moderate, and 39.3% good. For moderate, air quality is acceptable; however, for some pollutants there may be a moderate health concern for a very small number of people who are unusually sensitive to air pollution. I was surprised, at first, that three of the four water areas mentioned were impaired. Then, I thought about the body of water, the Housatonic River, that I rowed on and all the pollution I saw. My friend did a research project on mercury in the Housatonic and it was unbelievably high. 
    Another one time challenge was expressing my support for environmental actions to those of power in the given state. In order to dig deeper, I used the resource of GovTrack to find the PA Senators. The democratic senator for PA was Robert Casey. He took a pro environment position and is considered an environmental champion.  HIs website states that, “Senator Casey believes we must rise to the challenge of climate change and revitalize our economy by increasing our efforts in the areas of energy efficiency; developing and adopting cleaner ways of producing electricity; and creating jobs.” The challenge was to express my support, but I am not exactly sure how to go about expressing my support to him and his efforts. What is the most effective way to reach this cause? I found it very valuable to research the stances of the senators in this area, for it allowed me to feel more connected to all that is going on around me. 



  • Nevia Selmon 2/20/2019 8:15 PM
    Word count: 581

    This week I added on the challenge of writing down three things every day that I am grateful for, foraging for my own food, and taking a daily walk. I realized that the three challenges I had chose for last week were all every day challenges, though I had originally thought that powering off my computer for two hours was a one time challenge. I also added another one time challenge onto this week in order to even out this misconception. I added the one time challenge of foraging for my food. I really enjoyed the one time challenge of taking a daily walk because I was able to be more mindful and at peace during it. Most of the day I am in a rush walking from one class to the next, never taking time to walk with a clear mind set. One day Julia and I took a walk to the quad to watch the sunset, which was one of her daily challenges. It was nice to combine both of our daily challenges this one day for a more enriching experience. I definitely plan on adding watching the sunset to my challenges next week. We stayed as the sky changed hues from orange to red to purple and set over the hills in the distance. I never realized the grand space of hills to such an extent and beauty that they had before Saturday. A barrier that I faced with the one time challenge of foraging for my food was the realization that there are not many places in a close enough radius. I was surprised to find that in a rural area, like central PA, that there were very few areas with fresh foods could be easily obtained. I used the falling fruit to find trees with fruit to pick in the area. I found a tree on this website that was part of the Bucknell Arboretum Walk, which I did not know existed. I will definitely have to look into it. It seems like it would be up my alley. On the topic of sustainable foraging, I definitely hope to lean towards this direction in the future, but I am currently a first year and on the anytime access meal plan. When I have a chance to choose a different meal plan for next year, I will definitely be conscious of where to obtain sustainable food. I have found great benefit in keeping a daily journal on what I am grateful for. One day, I decided to write a thank you know to Barb. She is a woman who works in the women’s locker room washing all of the gear. She is such a kind women and always has a smile on her face. WHenever I walk into the locker room, she always greets me so positively and I am truly grateful for her. It felt really good to give her the thank you card because she deserves it and so much more for all that she does for all of the athletes. I looked into the resources on writing a grateful journal and it explained how it helps you to gain clarity on what you want to have more of in your life, and what you can cut from your life. I will definitely be continuing with this because it has helped me to be positive on days that I am feeling down, and to really appreciate the people I am grateful for in my life. 



    • brooke shepherd 2/25/2019 7:45 AM
      When I walk around campus, it’s normally to only walk to class. I’m happy that you had a positive experience of taking a walk around campus, even with the weather being chilly. I think that we take the outdoors around us for granted and it can be peaceful to walk around campus with no end destination. I’ve never thought about combining my eco-challenge with someone else, but your sunset experience with Julia seemed very calming. Most of the people around our campus don’t understand the challenges that we are doing, so it can be nice to share one with someone else. I think that your challenge of foraging for food was hard to complete given the weather conditions. Especially in rural Pennsylvania, there isn’t access to a lot of fruits and vegetables that wouldn’t be considered stealing. I found the “Anytime Access” to be frustrating when I was a freshman last year. I didn’t feel the need to have an unlimited supply of food. I think that the Bostwick Marketplace wastes a lot of food with their meal plan options. When I put my dishes on the conveyer belt to be cleaned, I constantly saw that their was a decent amount of food left on people’s plates, which was frustrating. With an unlimited access to food, people take food without actually needing it, which contributes to a large amount of waste. I’ve found it rewarding to be able to properly utilize my food choices this year, and have felt as though I have wasted less food. Once you are able to choose your meal plan next year I think you will have the same reaction. 

    • Andrew Stuhl 2/21/2019 6:09 AM
      How sweet about your note to Barb! I can't wait to hear her response, if you get to hear it. And I appreciate the reading/learning about sustainable foraging. This time of year, it will be slim pickings (winter and all). In future journals, I want to hear more specifics about what you found in your resources and more about what barriers, if any, you will face in making these changes permanent. I can see some of that last part here in your journal, and some seems implied, but I want you to be more explicit. Happy to talk more on this.

  • Nevia Selmon 2/13/2019 8:02 PM
    Mid Journal Unit 2: EcoChallenge
    Nevia Selmon 
    Word Count: 615

    I started with challenges that were easy to assimilate into my daily and weekly life to ease into the eco challenge. For my daily challenges I chose to take 5 minute showers and meditate. For my one time challenge I chose to shut my computer off for two hours. It was crazy to imagine that I save 20 gallons of water each day by shortening my showers to just 20 minutes. This seems like such a simple task, yet its impact goes so much further. In just the past six days, I have saved 120 gallons of water. It surprised me by how much water people overuse just by taking long and leisurely showers. I feel as though this is a change that I can adopt permanently into my life, for it is not difficult to cut my shower time to five minutes. Upon looking into further resources for taking five minute showers, I discovered that most people take ten to fifteen minute showers, which use upwards of 80 gallons of water and emit four pounds of CO2. I had absolutely no idea that CO2 was emitted every time I showered. This makes me want to make signs about water usage and CO2 emissions to put in every bathroom in my dorm and throughout campus. I feel like very few people are aware of how much water they really are using when they shower. If they are as astonished as I am by the amount of water is used DAILY to shower, they will be as prompted as I am to make a change. I am going to urge all of my family members and friends to get low flow showerheads.The resource provided on eco challenge about five minute showers made me realize the importance and I will definitely stick with this and spread the word. 
    The daily challenge of meditating was quite beneficial to my health. I have heard of the benefits of meditation in the past few years and have tried it on the occasion in the past years. When I saw it on eco challenge, I saw this as a message that I should try meditating. Doing it over the week time period that I had, I was able to see the change in my mood after the first few days. I had chosen to do the meditation right before I went to sleep. This allowed me to go into a calm state of sleep. I was able to fall much easier than before I started meditating. This may be because I didn’t have thoughts constantly whizzing through my mind. Time went still and I was able to be with the moment and address each individual thought calmly. I noticed that my mood the past week has been more relaxed, happy, and accepting after embarking on daily meditation. I will most certainly continue with daily meditation. I have also become a lot more aware of my breathing when in meditation, as well as when I check in on myself throughout the day. I hurt my back in rowing three weeks ago, and have been out and unable to exercise. I have been in the athletic training room nearly every day, and my trainer is also a yoga teacher and into mediation. She continually emphasized the importance of breath throughout every exercise that I do and channeling my core with each exhale. The breath is vital to our daily lives and relaxing allows a sense of calamity and ease. The reference of the New York Times meditation provides insight as to the importance of using meditation to train the mind. I look forward to embarking on more challenges in weeks to come! 



    • Andrew Stuhl 2/20/2019 5:42 AM
      Awesome! I would love to hear more about what you learned through meditation -- or maybe I should take up this challenge in the next week of our EcoChallenge. That's so great that you found this as a personal benefit to mindfulness, rest, and recovery. The older I've gotten, the more convinced I am about the restorative power of sleep. It heals so much, not only in terms of our body, but also our mind and emotions. I try to get at least 8 hours a night...which was hard for the past 7 years when we had kids who did not sleep through the night!! So that's awesome that you felt you dove into deep sleep faster. This is actually an issue among young people in the US today, as the direct exposure to screen lighting (phones, iPads, computers) right before bedtime does prevent folks from accessing the deep REM state of sleep (as compared to those who do not have screen time in the hour before attempting to fall asleep).  I also very much appreciate the energy you brought to your shower commitment. Did you talk with friends about this? Did 5 minutes feel like too short? How did you cope with the fact that it is often so relaxing to sit under hot water?? I know I'd have trouble turning off the tap!