Mother Nature (Network) is Looking for Interns

Mother Nature Network logoIf the college turnout for last week’s elections are any indication, we are fortunate in this country to have a population of highly passionate, highly informed young adults. The Mother Nature Network is looking to tap into some of that youthful energy by bringing on college interns whose passions run for the environment.

The soon to be launched environmental network is partnering with YouTube to hold video auditions to find one student from each major U.S. college to be a correspondent for Mother Nature Network in 2009. MNN’s college reporters will be highlighted contributors able to cover environmental topics in what many expect to be an exciting year for environmental causes once President-elect Obama takes office.

In addition to being a highlighted contributor on MNN, the winning correspondents will receive a “Flip Ultra” video camcorder, and the top five correspondents will be selected to participate in an exclusive, all-expense paid summit where they will share ideas with top environmentalists, business leaders, scientists and entertainers.

Contestants can audition by submitting a two-to-four minute video on YouTube or by writing a 500 word  great blog entry that shows off their insights and reporting on environmental issues and then going to Mother Nature Network’s rules for bloggers to find one of three ways to submit the post to the network.

Chuck Leavell, keyboardist for the Rolling Stones, and co-founder of MNN has his own short video up on YouTube explaining more about it.

If you know of any college students who might be interested in this internship, take a moment to pass this information along to them. MNN will accept video and blog entries until Friday, Jan. 16, 2009.

In the interest of full disclosure and journalistic integrity and all that good stuff, I should let you know that I have a personal connection with MNN. I have been hired as the blogger for their food channel.

  1. Bobby B.

    “If the college turnout for last week’s elections are any indication, we are fortunate in this country to have a population of highly passionate, highly informed young adults.”

    Really? One could argue that such a statement depends upon one’s perspective and that it also requires one to believe that the school systems are doing a proper job. Although the goal of education should be to transform children into reasoned, analytic, independent adults, many contend that the system is graduating unreasonable, dependent children who lack the ability to think analytically. Consider the recent elections as some measure of proof for such a statement. The line of ideological separation between conservatives and liberals (progressives) should be that of a limited government versus that of an ever-expanding government. Even though both parties in today’s two party system favor the latter ideology to varying degrees, the candidates who promised to take greater care of the citizenry were more successful. If this winning population is comprised primarily of the “highly passionate, highly informed young adults” you referenced above, what does that tells us about these “young adults”? Why did these “young adults” vote for expanding the nanny state? Are these “young adults” unable to break from a childlike dependence on something bigger than themselves? Are these “young adults” unable to analyze the past to reason that dependence only breeds greater dependence?

    If you look deep enough, you will find some who contend that school systems and universities do less to develop young minds than they do to develop young consumers. They claim that there existed a link between the education “reformers” (Horace Mann, John Dewey, etc.) and the industrialists (Carnegie, Rockefeller, Ford, etc.) in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The industrialists needed worker-consumers, and the education reformers were proponents of the Prussian (compulsory and a-religious) educational system. The success of both depended upon the development of an “educated” working class; what Karl Marx called the proletariat.

    I would encourage using a search engine to locate and read “What are your kids learning?”(Henry Lamb, October 19, 2002) and “How Public School Socialists Brainwash Children & Destroy America” (Joel Turtel, November 18, 2006). Both are blatant hit pieces, but may get you thinking about the possibility that we are being fed to believe instead of being taught to think. Although I do not generally recommend Wikipedia, use it to look up John Taylor Gatto and follow some of the links to his essays, books, etc. He was a New York State Teacher of the Year who quit teaching because he was no longer willing to hurt children. This is one of his quotable quotes with which I think most could agree:

    “Think of the things that are killing us as a nation – narcotic drugs, brainless competition, recreational sex, the pornography of violence, gambling, alcohol, and the worst pornography of all – lives devoted to buying things, accumulation as a philosophy – all of them are addictions of dependent personalities, and that is what our brand of schooling must inevitably produce.”

    Here are a few of Gatto’s other observations:
    1. The children I teach are indifferent to the adult world. This defies the experience of thousands of years. A close study of what big people were up to was always the most exciting occupation of youth, but nobody wants to grow up these days and who can blame them? Toys are us.
    2. The children I teach have a poor sense of the future, of how tomorrow is inextricably linked to today. As I said before, they have a continuous present, the exact moment they are at is the boundary of their consciousness.
    3. The children I teach are ahistorical, they have no sense of how past has predestined their own present, limiting their choices, shaping their values and lives.
    4. The children I teach are cruel to each other, they lack compassion for misfortune, they laugh at weakness, and they have contempt for people whose need for help shows too plainly.
    5. The children I teach are materialistic, following the lead of schoolteachers who materialistically “grade” everything – and television mentors who offer everything in the world for free.
    6. The children I teach are dependent, passive, and timid in the presence of new challenges. This is frequently masked by surface bravado, or by anger or aggressiveness but underneath is a vacuum without fortitude.

    Go wild!

  2. Steven Earl Salmony

    Dear Friends,

    Please consider an allegory: that a titanic struggle between human beings and the natural world is in the offing. It seems this struggle is fulminating now precisely because too many leaders of the 6.7 billion {soon to be 9+ billion} members of the human family generally do not share the perspective of many within the Orion community. Many too many of our brothers and sisters, especially those with great wealth and power, evidently see human organisms as separate from, and somehow superior to, life as we know it on Earth.

    At least to me, it appears that an epochal contest is taking shape on the far horizon between the ‘team’ of “mother culture and father profit” on one side and ‘Team’ Mother Nature on the other.

    This could be the greatest show on Earth in 10,000 years.

    The team of “mother culture and father profit” appears adamant in its willful intentionality to stay the same old business-as-usual course of recklessly overconsuming limited natural resources; relentlessly expanding large-scale production and distribution capabilities without regard to physical limitations of the natural world; and overpopulating our planetary home, come what may for children and coming generations, biodiversity, the environment and the Earth’s body.

    Team Mother Nature simply is.

    Which team will likely be seen by reasonable and sensible observers as winning the contest for success in 2012, 2020 and 2050, if the human community continues its idolatry of distinctly human overconsumption, overproduction and overpopulation activities by choosing evermore unbridled growth just as we are doing now?

    If the leaders of the family of humanity do not choose change, do you have any ideas about which team will prevail and when will the outcome of the colossal contest no longer be in doubt?



    Steven Earl Salmony
    AWAREness Campaign on The Human Population,
    established 2001

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