Student Spotlight: Sarah Porterfield
An interview of Sarah Porterfield by Kwan Hopkins
Tell us a bit about you: your major/minor, year in school, where you’re from, some of your interests.
I’m a sophomore in the College studying English and minoring in Economics. I’m really from all over. I’ve been lucky enough to live all over the country. My longest stints have been in Pennsylvania, Colorado, and where I’m currently living (California!) when I’m not here in D.C.
Could you explain your background in environment/climate change? — this can be activism, previous classes, policy experience, etc.
Like a lot of people our age, I’ve been worried about how climate change will ultimately change the lives of the people I know and the people around the world. As a student hoping to make an impact when I leave college, I thought it was crucial to try and learn more about climate change so this is really where I’m starting.
Can you tell us all the Core Pathways courses you’ve taken while you’ve been at Georgetown?
So far, I’ve taken Climate Change with Prof. Zimmerman to try and tackle the Science-for-All requirements and paired that with Intro to Global Cinema: Climate change with Professor Sky Sitney for fun.
What interested you most about the Core Pathways program/courses?
I’ll admit, things started out mostly because I saw in Core Pathways a creative way to complete some credits and to do so early in my Georgetown career. As I learned more during that first registration, however, I couldn’t help but try and expand my horizons and make participating in the program more worthwhile. The wide array of courses was surprising–I wouldn’t have imagined seeing climate change through the point of view of film, for example. I can’t wait to do more.
What’s been your favorite activity/experience in all your Core Pathways courses?
I was really lucky to have two great team members in Prof. Sitney’s course. For our final project, fellow Core Pathways students Kwan Hopkins and Caroline Keidel, and I were tasked with doing an environmental viewing of a film. We chose Spike Lee’s Do the Right Thing. Exploring the disparate impact extreme weather can have on communities of color or low-income communities was incredibly interesting and we managed to have fun too.
How do you plan to involve yourself in climate/environmental related projects in the future?
I know Georgetown has some organizations like GREEN that make it easy for students to get involved and may try to go to a meeting or two this year. Additionally, I think events like the producers of the documentary The Grab coming for Integrative Day are so useful and hope to attend more of those as I enroll in a couple more Core Pathways courses.
How do you think the Core Pathways program can be improved or anything you really hated?
I don’t quite know how to say this but Integrative Day can be hit or miss. I’m not quite sure what might make it better but I know it isn’t always working in its current form.