Getting to Know You – Ryan Gebhardt

Hello, my name is Ryan Gebhardt. I’m a sophomore here at University Park, State College, PA. I am originally from the small town of Delran in New Jersey, a few minutes out from Philadelphia. I am an undergraduate in the College of Engineering and the major I’m working towards is Electrical Engineering. I have an interest in programming and enjoy to play video games in my spare time. My favorite game being Dota 2 which I have even joined a club for it here at Penn State. I’m looking to join more clubs this semester to further look into my interests and make more connections. What I hope to gain from this course is a better understanding of how people affect and use the geography around them through culture and necessity. I’m also interested in the political side of geography and how decisions in congress may be able affect our view of the world.

An important issue that I’m interested in the the first module brings up is how governance affects geography. The natural world around us is subject to many human forces, which are more or less controlled by the governing body located in that area. Decisions made by policy makers or despots can now affect issues all over the world thanks to globalization and the connectedness of modern society. We are in an age that is beginning to understand that every action we take as both groups and individuals affects the planet in its own way. Government decisions related to economy and trade can be especially impactful since it encourages or discourages production of goods, which often either adds to or takes away sources of environmental damage.

2 thoughts on “Getting to Know You – Ryan Gebhardt

  1. Hi Ryan, welcome to GEOG 030! I hear Electrical Engineering is a tough major so I’m sure it’s nice to get away from some of the math heavy courses that you must be taking. I too spend a lot of my free time playing video games but never really got around to playing Dota 2 myself, although I have a friend that loves that game! Geography is definitely an interesting topic and I share your interest in the cohesiveness between geography and government. I hope you’re looking forward to GEOG 030, I’m sure it’s going to be a great semester!

    Here is my blog entry if you want to check it out:

  2. Hey Ryan,
    First off, it’s great to see another engineer on this page. I am currently an undergraduate in engineering at Penn State University Park as well – though I am studying aerospace not electrical. In economics last semester, I learned that a lot of policymakers can actually enact laws or policies that reduce pollution or destruction to the environment, which is why I’m so glad this is addressed in our module and your blog post. I think it is so important for the government to take into account the environment when doing trade or allowing the production and distribution of a good that is potentially harmful to the environment. That being said, because we all affect the planet through any of our actions, I see the importance in holding the governing body somewhat accountable for the health of the natural world around us.
    – Dorish Nguyen

    Here is a link to my blog post if you are interested in reading about human-environment interactions!

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