Here’s the link to my E-Portfolio!

Emma Price E-Portfolio

Advocacy Project Proposal

For the advocacy project, I’d like to address the topic of gender equality and the role that both genders play in the issue. So many times, gender equality has been sold as a solely woman’s problem, but there is an entire portion of the population that that view distances. The end goal would be for people to visit the He For She website and sign their petition to join the fight for gender equality.

As for the medium, I plan on making a video with graphics representing the need for cooperation between both sexes. I plan to share the video on youtube and further encourage audiences on reddit forums and other social media to hear the message.

Persuasive Essay Topic Proposal

For the persuasive essay, I’d like to look into the topic of vaccination mandates and regulation, but more specifically how the power to mandate and regulate vaccines should be in the hands of the federal government, rather than in the states hands, as is the status quo. The topic of vaccinations has a wide range of facets, and there are plenty of debates over whether or not vaccines should be mandated or not; but I’d like to focus on how these mandates should be implemented.

A big idea going around in relation to the vaccination debate is herd immunity, which says that there is a fraction of the population that must be vaccinated to protect those who are unable to be vaccinated. How is this possible if each state has its own laws regarding which vaccines are required, when, and for whom? Giving this power to the federal government would set a standard across the country, so we can hope to protect the individual as well as the public.

Deliberation Reflection

For the past few weeks, we have been working on preparing to facilitate a deliberation with our peers and other community members. Many times, discussions like these turn into debates, where certain people can’t share their beliefs without others coming back with attacks, and nothing is truly accomplished. Our goal for this project is to facilitate a deliberation, in which we can discuss our topic with a wide variety of people, ultimately coming away with a greater understanding of all the different sides of the issue, and every person’s perspective.

We were given this task of facilitating other people having this conversation and have focused our effort largely on how we can get the members of the community to have a productive conversation about our topic. In order for us to experience the other side of the deliberation, we were required to attend and participate in a deliberation of another group. I chose to attend one before our deliberation, so I could see how best to facilitate our own.

This past weekend, I attended a deliberation that focused on the learning objectives of the modern classroom. There were a good amount more group members at this deliberation, so they were able to spread themselves around the room. Walking in, I liked how they seemed like they were a part of the deliberation as much as we were.

The values that they focused on were traditional individual learning, critical thinking, and community based learning.

They explained that traditional individual learning centered around memorization and general knowledge acquisition. We talked about how it is important to have a base knowledge of a subject before you are able to take the topic any further than simply memorization. We got into a discussion about what the base knowledge includes, and how it should be assessed. Standardized testing came up a lot and we discussed the pros and cons of the common core and what we could do to change it.

After we talked about what the base knowledge everyone should have is, we then touched on how best to utilize this knowledge. We talked about how classrooms could better foster critical thinkers, rather than students who simply memorize and regurgitate information. Students should be able to take risks and shouldn’t be afraid to be wrong every once in awhile. Critical thinking is hugely important for any type of forward movement of our current understanding of the world.

Community learning was the third approach, and focused on the logistics of how to change the common classroom into something more tailored to life-like group efforts. Collaborating with others and using their creativity and critical thinking is much more beneficial than trying to fix problems on our own.

Overall, I thought that the group did a great job leading the conversation. Their approaches all fit together nicely, and kind of followed the flow of the conversation in a way that mirrored our thought process of the issue.

This I Believe: I Don’t Have to Decide

151980136A rock star princess on the moon. When I was little and was asked what I wanted to be when I grew up, I would have told you that I wanted to be a rock star and a princess and an astronaut. Yes. I had some pretty big aspirations starting before I could even walk. I remember telling that to people, and they would laugh, and say how cute I was. But what they didn’t realize is that I was completely serious. My dad would say, “If that’s what you really want, you can do it.” It was what I really wanted. I couldn’t choose between my dream jobs, so I was just going to do them all.

This theme of not being able to decide has been pretty consistent since I was little. My parents always tell the story of how they would take my sister and me to a candy shop when we were little and I would just stand there looking at all the different options, until I got so overwhelmed that I left, or had my mom choose for me. It’s funny looking back at it. But at the time, it seemed like the biggest decision in the world. What if I don’t like the candy that I choose? What if I make the wrong decision?

Now that I’m “all grown up”, the types of decisions I have to make have changed, but they aren’t any easier. Now, I’m faced with questions like, “What do you want to study?” and “What are you most looking for in life?” Somehow, I left the time of you don’t have to know what you want to do yet and entered the make these decisions that will alter the rest of your life.

Throughout my life, I have been given opportunities to open my eyes to so many different options and to put myself in those situations and see what really appeals to me. I have more plans than I can even keep track of, and I honestly get anxious sometimes, worrying about how I will accomplish all that I want to do.

In a world that places people into neat categories, I have found that making decisions only accentuates that single-mindedness. People tell me that I have to choose, but I believe that I don’t have to decide.

I can play sports and do well in school. I can travel and have a career. I can become a surgeon and have a family. I don’t have to place myself in a single category. I don’t have to decide.

Blog Post #1

This I Believe Topics:

  • “I Don’t Have to Decide” – If you ask anyone who really knows me they’ll all tell you one thing about me: that I am incapable of making decisions. Of any kind. In life, people will tell you to make choices. But I believe that I don’t have to decide. If I want to be a surgeon and have a family and travel the world, I can do it all. They say you can’t have it all, but I believe that if that’s what I want to do, then I’ll do it.
  • “Don’t be Pushed by Your Problems” – My favorite quote is by Ralph Waldo Emerson and says, “Don’t be pushed by your problems, be led by your dreams.” I heard this and it really spoke to me. For my entire life, I have worried about the most trivial things. I’m a worrier, always have been. But I also have big plans for the future. I believe that it isn’t always possible to live in the moment, you have to think about the past and the future. But motivating myself by seeing all the things I could accomplish is monumentally more helpful to me than being chased by my problems.

Civic Issue Blog Ideas:

  • Military Veteran support – I have enormous respect for anyone who has devoted time to serving the country for the rest of us. I have people close to me that have given up so much so that we can feel safe. It is only reasonable that we should provide support for them after they are done serving.
  • Alternative Fuel – It is widely known at this point that the climate of the world is changing and the only way to stop is if we do something about it. Finding alternative fuel will help decrease the damage to the environment because they release fewer emissions and could be more readily available.

Passion Blog Ideas:

  • “Gluten Free Living” – Last year, I found out that I had a gluten intolerance. I wasn’t diagnosed with celiac, but I would still have to gut gluten entirely out of my diet. At first, I didn’t know a whole lot about gluten, as I’m sure most people don’t. I’ve faced some difficulties, but it is all worth it if I feel that much better without it.
  • “Organized College Life” – Yes. I am one of those people. I have to have everything organized at all times. And I feel overwhelmed if everything isn’t as it should be. Now some people might say that it is unnecessary to color code my planner, or make lists for everything, but it helps me keep everything under control.

HW Post #9

From the beginning, I was excited to have the opportunity to craft a presentation like this. I have always welcomed challenges of public speaking and the level of freedom we were given for this assignment enabled me to have many different ideas of where I wanted to go. I had thought about many different topics, all of which, I thought would lend themselves well to this type of presentation.

I wanted to do something abstract, something that people don’t think about in their everyday lives. I wanted to make people think about the way they live their lives, and question what they had been doing for so long. I played around with a variety of different thought processes and came up with this one.

My paradigm shift was about coffee houses and how their role in society has changed as the views of society have changed. In the past, there was a boom of innovation and every aspect of a person’s life had something to do with advancing knowledge. Even their thoughts and conversations in, say, a coffee shop. Now, there has already been so much innovation in the past. And there is still plenty more to learn, but the people of today’s society are beginning to appreciate the past and not push so hard for advancing. Hence, the old fashioned coffee shop that is so common.

I thought about how I could relate this back to the audience, and make them really take to heart what I was saying. That’s where my idea of analyzing the effects nostalgia can have on a person’s emotions and thought processes.

A challenge I faced with this topic for a presentation like this, was how I was going to take something so abstract and be able to break it down and say what I wanted to say in 4-5 min. I struggled with how concise I needed to be. I also wrestled with the best way to represent these ideas visually that would stimulate the audience’s attention. I ended up connecting something the audience knows well, and may have some emotions to go along with it: The Incredibles.

I tried to make my visuals simple enough that the audience wouldn’t have to work hard to follow along, especially since the topic was so abstract. Because of this, I used simple fonts, formats, and color schemes.

Looking back, I think that the visuals I had were effective in supplementing my presentation, however, if I could go back and do it over again, I would add a few more slides. There was a lot of time that the screen was blank, and I think my overall presentation could have benefitted from some more simple, yet informative slide.

Looking at the explanation and delivery of my performance, I think that the fact that I didn’t memorize the lines exactly helped with the conversational tone I was going for. However, I wish I would have been more confident with the information, so there wouldn’t have been as many pauses. However, this was definitely partly because of nerves.

I liked the storyline about The Incredibles I weaved throughout the presentation. However, I think I could have delivered the story more effectively as well.

Overall, I think that there weren’t any major aspects I would change and I was happy with how the presentation turned out.



Two weekends ago, I went on my first canning trip with my THON Committee. I had heard a lot about what canning would be like: how much closer you get with the people you go with, how cold it can be, and most of all, how good it makes you feel to spend an entire weekend doing something that will ultimately benefit others.

People would come back from canning weekends and rave about how that weekend restored their faith in humanity, and how nice and willing to help everyone was. So I knew a little about what it would be like. But I didn’t really.

The people I talked to while I was out there on the street corner decked out in Penn State and THON gear inspired me to be a better person. I had always seen canners around my hometown, and always donated, but the generosity some of these people showed took me by surprise.

While I had heard about some canning horror stories, where they didn’t get any money and the people were rude and standoff-ish, I didn’t experience any of that. People would donate no matter what car they were driving, or how many kids they had. And even if they couldn’t donate, they would smile and wave and thank us for what we were doing.

I don’t know what it is. Maybe it was the name that they associated with what we were doing, or their sense of civic engagement coming out. Or maybe we were just especially approachable. Whatever it was, the kindness people showed, I will never forget.

Kitchen Inferno



Today, Food Network is premiering a new cooking show called Kitchen Inferno. Chefs compete in a variety of cooking challenges, and must decide if they would like to take their earnings and run, or risk it all for the grand prize.

A regular on the show, Mikey Robins is 16 years old, from Lower Gwynedd, Pennsylvania. He got his start by appearing on Teen Chopped in 2013. He has since started an event planning and catering business, all the while continuing his high school classes.

I went grade school with Mikey’s sister and have known him and his family since I was little.

As with any new TV show, there is a lot of advertising that goes on before the show actually begins. Commercials, ads, interviews.

One thing that I have seen a lot of recently that I didn’t used to see is the use of Social Media. Before, networks would advertise for their shows and that would be that. But now there is a whole new side to advertising: one in which every party involved can play a part.

Both Mikey and his family have been posting about the show on their social media sites for the past few weeks. They get likes and more people to see each post with every like and comment. It is amazing the reach that social media has gained, perhaps more so than traditional advertising at this point. The networks individual people have, span a greater amount of people than most companies do.

This aspect of advertising is something that can only grow more. It is amazing to think that just a few years ago, there was no impact such as this, but now it plays such an important role.

TED Talk Outline


  1. The story of Odysseus
    1. After the Trojan War, Odysseus takes ten years to return to Ithaca
    2. Uses the thoughts of his family and his penelope to get back home
  2. Nostalgia seen as a bad thing
    1. Derived from Greek “nostos” meaning return and “algos” meaning pain
    2. Assumed suffering that went along with the thoughts of the past
  3. Nostalgia isn’t a bad thing, can actually be a good thing

Nostalgia in the past

  1. 17th century medical student coined the term for anxieties displayed by swiss mercenaries fighting away from home, “neurological disease of essentially demonic cause”
  2. People seen as maladapted to the present and afraid of the future
    1. Seen as a mental illness, a disconnection from the real world, and a coping mechanism for the pathetic and melancholic
  3. Example: Constantine Sedkides moved from the University of North Carolina to the University of Southampton, England. Told a colleague about thoughts about his previous home, who told him he was depressed for living in the past. But he said those thoughts didn’t make him sad, they showed him he had roots and a community. The gave him the strength to move forward.

The past is what makes us able to handle the present and move forward to the future

  1. “Nostalgia is a way for us to tap into the past experiences that we have that are quite meaningful— to remind us that our lives are worthwhile, that we are people of value, that we have good relationships, that we are happy and that life has some sense of purpose or meaning”
  2. Usually involuntary and triggered by negative feelings, so people assume it’s bad
  3. Acts as an anti-depressant
  4. Makes us feel meaningful and tied to a shared history
    1. Gives us a wider lens
  5. Counteracts loneliness, boredom and anxiety

Nostagia in this fast paced world

  1. Paradox of technological advances – internet and TV channels allow us to go back to the past
  2. Most common in young adults, who are coping with important life transitions; and older adults who are looking back and reevaluating their lives
  3. Triggers: smells, music
  4. Most people experience it once a week, nearly half experience it three or four times a week
  5. Important to find a sweet spot
    1. Don’t let the past remind us of what we are not now
    2. Don’t be nostalgic for something that hasn’t ended yet


  1. Build nostalgic-to-be memories (anticipatory nostalgia)
  2. Experience is a prized possession— no one can take it away, it should be cherished
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