(COVINGTON, La.) — Dr. Shawn Mullet is leading an extracurricular course for St. Paul’s students that examines 21st century issues around the renewability of vital resources like energy, food, and water. The course will culminate in a trip to Iceland over Easter break.
Mullet, a new teacher at St. Paul’s this school year, has already led a comparable course on China’s place in the modern world that ended with a trip to the world’s most populated nation last summer. Mullet took five St. Paul’s juniors (current seniors, two of which are Paper Wolf staff members) to Shanghai, Xi’an, and Beijing for over a week.
Senior Alex Schlottman found the experience to be enlightening. “Going to China is an experience I will never forget. It definitely broadened my horizons and taught me to think more big-picture. However, I do not think I would have fully appreciated the experience if the course had not given me so much context as to what I would be seeing,” said Schlottman.
Mullet’s curriculum has far more to offer than a vacation. St. Paul’s business teacher Brian Logarbo said, “this kind of hands-on class that provides kids with real, relevant knowledge is what has been missing from modern education.”
According to Mullet, the course will “give students the chance to think and learn in a way that is not normally available to high school students.” Rather than a traditional high school class, students will be challenged to examine how vital resources like food, energy, and water interact with each other and how they shape both domestic politics and international politics at large.
After spending the first three weeks of the class focusing on those three elements, students will spend time on different locations such as California, Iceland, India, South Africa, China, and more. Following the conclusion of the course, students will have the option to travel to Iceland. While the final details of the trip are still being worked out, Mullet plans on touring a geothermal energy plant, meeting with government officials or academics, and visiting the area where two tectonic plates are drifting apart.