Sustainable architecture has nothing to do with architecture

Posted on November 04, 2010

Sustainability is and idea regarding how we as humans can make the earth last longer, and essentially, prolong our consumption of its resources. There are many different political and philosophical camps surrounding the idea of sustainability. The root of the word comes from the sustainere which translates to "hold up". This is most certainly referencing the maintenance of resources and life on earth. However, since the 1980's sustainability has taken on a human centric paradigm, which is most famously thought of as "meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs." Sustainable architecture has been a central topic to global sustainability and rightfully so. Architecture is critical to the topic of sustainability because it demands a vast amount and variety of resources, architecture itself is necessary for a civilization to exist and its primary function is to shelter members of a society. The notion of sustainability has more to do with the intentions of the person who creates something, but more importantly, the intentions of the person who uses resources.

Architecture demands resources. Sustainability is about balancing resources. A person who interacts with architecture certainly takes for granted much of what is required to provide the space that they are in. A quick look at the contrast between third world villages and metropolitan urban centers will show us that architectural complexity is proportional to the complexity of the society. For the most part, how and where a person lives determines their consumption through architecture. Sustainability has more to do with the balancing of consumption and production. This could most easily be thought of as cultivation. Ideally, what would go into architecture, could be taken out. This is more complicated, the more complex the society.

Architecture is necessary for a civilization. Sustainability is necessary for a civilization. Even in the third world village, the villagers are procuring resources to create their architecture. Since sustainability has to do first and foremost with the actions of the person or group of people, it really is defined by what are the resources available, and after that what the person or group of people do to cultivate those resources.

Architecture contains a human or group of humans. Sustainability is the effect or outworking or humanity. In order to make our architecture sustainable, we ourselves need to want to "hold up" the resources we have access to and let that determine what resources we actually have to work with to create architecture.

The majority of discussions about sustainable architecture have to do with what humanity can do to change architecture to be less consumptive. Being less consumptive is not sustainability, sustainability is looking at what resources we can sustain, and then our architecture and civilization can be sustainably built from those sustainable resources.

How to Become a Master Chef Through Online Education

Posted on November 03, 2010

Looking up at me through a swirling cloud of thick gray smoke, my wife cried out "Help, honey! I'm burning the (insert any food here) again!" If this is a regular occurrence at your house, and the kids are starting to look a bit thin and keep asking for McDonald's, maybe it's time you considered a little bit of culinary education to help your little wifey out. In fact, both of you could enroll! There are many available resources online for the struggling chef and the expert who wants to know more- even possibly (gasp!) pursuing a career in the food industry.

Roles have changed in the kitchen since the 1950's, in case you hadn't noticed- and now men and women are sharing the cooking duties around the house.Not only have the roles changed, but so has the classroom. It used to be that said wifey would be taught at her mother's side all of the family recipes, and then she would either bless or subject her family to those family traditions (another dry Thanksgiving turkey, anyone?). Now, thanks to the Food Network and online technology, all of us can grow in our knowledge and skills to create something that expresses our love for food and our love for our families.

Through online courses by such renowned colleges as Le Cordon Bleu and The Art Institute Online you can actually pursue a bachelor's degree in many different aspects of the food industry; from food preparation to inventory, purchasing and management. Online cooking schools are divided into two types: schools offering degree, diploma, or certificate programs, and schools offering casual cooking instruction. Many of the higher level courses have some requirements; some require a previous associates degree in food preparation or service, and also many require physical tutelage and attendance due to the impracticality of grading your food without tasting it. However, for the novice who just wants to learn, the possibilities are endless. A simple search of "online culinary courses" pulls up hundreds to thousands of legitimate online courses and videos geared for the beginner and expert alike.

So wade through the smoke and bacon grease and search through watery eyes for all of your online cooking needs. They are out there, waiting to save you and your family from sure starvation or maybe worse, a fast food diet! Bon Appetit!

Considering an online seminary or ministry degree?

Posted on November 03, 2010

You may have had or heard the calling since you were young. You may have recently become a Christian and want to share with others most effectively what God has done in you. You have desired to go to school and become a certified pastor or theological expert but not had the resources- neither the time nor the money to pursue your calling. Now, through the many available online seminary courses, you can achieve what you have only dreamed of!

Most churches and religious institutions require that you have a basic degree in Ministry or Theological Studies before they would even consider hiring you. Most people won't listen to you unless they see that you know what you are talking about. In the past, that would have required thousands of dollars and at least several years' of study at an institution; you would have to move your family and pay exorbitant costs on a very limited budget. We all know that most pastors aren't rich men, at least in terms of worldly riches! However, there are now many highly accredited colleges and seminaries that offer a full range of online courses, from the basic (Certificate of Graduate Studies, 30 hours) to the ultimate, Dr. of Ministry (from the Baptist Bible Seminary, about one year).

These courses offer great flexibility and depth. You can complete studies from your home or office. Some courses are taught online in eight-week sessions beginning in January, June and October. All assignments for the course will be completed within two months of the last day of class. The convenient formats allow you to pursue your education without relocating your family or leaving your ministry. These courses are designed for people who may even be in a full time ministry position or a full time job- all have been made achievable through the use of online videos and correspondence with the professors.

So now, you can pursue your calling without sacrificing your family or job in a way that doesn't leave them unloved or unprotected. You can focus on what you can learn and grow in instead of how fast your school loans are bulging with interest. You will be astonished how many schools are offering these fully accredited, complete courses- all you need to do is look!

Perks of an entrepreneur receiving an MBA

Posted on November 03, 2010

Do you want to become an entrepreneur? Do you have a vision of starting companies, managing people, and navigating the business world? If so, you have likely considered pursuing an MBA degree at one point or another. Most entrepreneurs have major doubts when it comes to spending more time in school and less time away from their efforts in the private sector. These doubts are understandable considering the majority of knowledge needed to become an entrepreneur happens on the ground. However, with the future of the market uncertain, and some of the benefits of receiving an MBA come from much more than classroom knowledge, the default stance of entrepreneurs to not receive an MBA needs to be challenged.

There are several key benefits of entrepreneurs receiving an MBA. First, there is a large piece of credibility and verification of knowledge that comes with receiving your MBA. When recruiting future employees, making proposals to investors, or just networking with other entrepreneurs having an MBA will show that you have spent the time in the classroom and the private sector to qualify you to do what you are doing. In a world with so much financial turmoil, people are looking to work with people who are qualified to be in positions of leadership.

Second, an MBA gives you many options to fall back on in case of major life change. What if you start a family? What if you can no longer keep up the pace to be an entrepreneur? What if, as almost all entrepreneurs face at one time or another, your business falls flat? Having an MBA opens many doors to jobs that would otherwise be closed at larger corporations.

Third, the networking that you will receive during your time as a student is invaluable. Where else will you be in classrooms, cohorts and online communities with hundreds of other future and current business leaders all looking to make a new start? Virtually nowhere. This is one of the hidden perks of receiving an MBA that few people talk about. The relationships and networks built during your time in school could very well lead to very profitable business partnerships in the future.

An MBA isn’t for everyone, and certainly not for every entrepreneur. As with any masters degree it should be pursued by those that have already received an undergraduate degree. However, it does not necessarily need to be a business degree. Entrepreneurs should strongly consider seeking out all options for furthering their education, especially with the abundance of online options.

Considering a Masters of Fine Arts degree?

Posted on November 03, 2010

The Masters of Fine Arts (or MFA) is a continuation of studies for those who are considering taking their love of the arts to the highest level. Many students wishing to pursue this degree will use the time they will receive in the studio to hone their skills, explore their artistic endeavors and find their niche or voice if you will. Masters of Fine Arts programs are also used as a time to delve deeply into literature such as poetry, epics, plays, and classic literature that students often miss out on, but have formed the great artistic movements of the world. A Masters of Fine Arts degree is recommended to anyone wishing to develop their skills, learn the theory behind the great artists of the world, and have the studio time to hone their craft.

There are also many other great reasons to pursue an MFA. One of the most overlooked benefits of participating in a Masters of Fine Arts program is the community in which you get to participate. You will no longer be bogged down by general education classes and other distracting requirements of an undergraduate program. Instead you are freed up to fully participate in the shared knowledge of world class faculty and other students. Just about any person with a Fine Arts Degree will tell you it’s the other hard-working, up-and-coming artists: poets, writers, sculptors, painters, and designers that will not only push you, but broaden your horizons. It is often through this network of new formed relationships that you are exposed to much contemporary artists and writers. These are the people that are on the forefront of the art community and will expose you to great living artists, not just studying work by dead people in a book.

A Masters of Fine Arts is for students who have already completed a bachelors or undergraduate degree. Most students pursuing an MFA will have completed a Bachelors of Fine Arts, but it is not required.

Students pursuing a Masters of Fine Arts generally emerge from the program with new insights not only to the contemporary world of art, but also into their own hearts and minds fueling their creative endeavors. The MFA degree is highly recommended for anyone wanting to reach new heights in their artistic career. While significant time will be needed in the studio honing your skills, there are several online education choices for programs that work with students remotely. Be sure to check out all available options when it comes to pursuing an MFA!