Saturday, October 13, 2007

Are university students actually environmentally concious?

i'm studying biochemistry. i have 70 plus course mates of which the majority of them are taking a course called environmental biochemistry. it's a third year course but in my opinion, it is a relatively easy (no... manageable) course. why do i say this? it's because the biochemistry part (which involves certain biogeochemical cycles and molecular structures of pollutants) of the course is just half of it. the other half is about how pollutants actually pollute the environment, ways we can remedy and prevent further damage (which for me is eye-opening and easy - because most of it is common sense) and also learning what 'biodegradable' really mean - how this term has been rampantly misused in commercial world. many of my course mates do not like this course because the lecturer is temperamental at times and will not bend to accommodate you. but aside from that, i would think it would be a very practical course to take as it relates directly to our lives, unlike many other biochemistry courses where the main focus is biochemical processes of a minute part of our body. yes it does relate to us but sometimes you can get a little lost in all the glucose transporters, second messenger systems and major histocompetibility complexes that you tend to forget that these stuffs are actually in every one of us humans and other living organisms.

anyway, all the ramblings above leads to the following scenario which i witnessed with my very own eyes. my friends and i were walking up the 'hill' to lecture halls complex and ahead of us were another bunch of our course mates. we were going to attend our last lecture on environmental biochemistry. we were drinking milo form those green paper boxes and i saw one of my course mates (from the group ahead of us) throw the milo box into the drain!
i know that our faculty doesn't have dustbins at every corner, but they do have 2 to 3 dustbins on every floor of all the buildings... would it mortally hurt you to hold your rubbish for a couple of paces more to a dustbin? i guess there's always a thrill of breaking the rules... but it's just so ironic that a university student that has just finished a course in which she learns exactly what can be biodegraded throws a cardboard box which has plastic lamination and bits of other plastic materials into the drain without casting a thought on how it would clog the drainage system and contribute to the already too-foul-to-breathe stench of the faculty of science! and this behaviour from one whom i've known since form 6 and she, a city slicker!

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