My name is Joy Malonza and I am currently a junior double majoring in Healthcare and Society as well as International Studies with a concentration in Economics. I found myself signing up for this course after finding out that it was a newly offered class that would enable me to knockout another Healthcare and Society requirement. This was actually a rather late discovery as I just joined the class but a great discovery nonetheless!
In the true spirit of the liberal arts, it’s great that while geography is not quite directly tied to the content matter of my major, I am still able to be part of a class in a subject that I have never before considered becoming immersed in. This is my first geography class here at the university and I’m very much looking forward to learning new things and getting a glimpse of the unknown. I also look forward to unraveling everything from the basics of how maps are made to engaging in conversations that discuss the political connotations that influence the depiction and subsequent understanding of our complex world. Furthermore, I am very intrigued by the chance to accumulate some hard skill that is rather specific and, considering my major, perhaps slightly random but also incredibly practical and useful in the long run. Actually, when I think about it, knowledge of geography is key to numerous fields of study. How does one begin to analyze the economic situation or the status of public health within a country without the context of location which gives away history, politics and so many other contributing factors that are all part of the larger puzzle? Geography is at the genesis of comprehending why our world is the way it is today, the answers to which are applicable in any field.
I signed up for this class with an open mind, ready to soak in everything that it has to offer and I can’t wait to see the end results of this detour. After all, an open mind has been the theme of my whole academic experience at this university. I came to Richmond thinking that I would be a business major, and while economics is not so far off, public health is very much a field of its own, which, as is evident now, has led to my introduction into new areas of the Richmond experience that I wouldn’t have imagined myself being a part of before.