Bio-Ethics Course Explores Environmental Issues

Dixie Lissack ’21
This class is a two-semester, major course, focusing on the natural world, environmental problems, and the impact of our everyday actions on them. The class material is broken up by the two different semesters. The first semester focuses more on the environmental science part of the class, while the second semester focuses more on the bioethics of the material learned in the first semester. The students’ in-depth knowledge on environmental issues makes for some interesting open discussion concerning the ethics of human actions.
Students find that the material matter is highly engaging, as it deals with many problems that we are seeing come to light today such as climate change and its involvement in the modern world. 

“Everything we are learning is relevant to conversations happening about climate change and the future of our planet happening today among world leaders. I think it is really important to be knowledgeable about what is going on in the world even when the harmful effects are not directly affecting us right now” Palmer Booth ‘20 states. “What we learn in class almost gives us a whole new point of view on our everyday lives, like how much energy we use in our lives, or how we can help keep the earth a healthy place” Garett Kelly ‘21 adds.

Although students find the material to be very interesting, it is not the only thing students like about the class. Students note that they really enjoy the projects that they get to conduct, being able to delve deep into topics that particularly interest them. 

“My favorite part about the class is the different projects we have done in the class. For example, earlier in the year I did a project on hydraulic fracking, and now I’m doing another one on if the pros hydroelectric dams in Patagonia outweigh the cons,” Kelly ‘21 states. “[The projects] have allowed me to gain even more information about the world’s environment and how humans have impacted it and what we need to do to change it for the better” Abbie Desantis ‘21 adds. 

Palmer Booth ‘20 states that she has a different favorite part of the class: the teacher! “My favorite part of the class is Ms. Willing! I have her for a teacher for the first time this year and I’m really thankful to learn from her.” 
As the first semester comes to an end, students prepare for the next stage of the class, excited to dive into some new material!


The Shipley School is a private, coeducational day school for pre-kindergarten through 12th grade students, located in Bryn Mawr, PA. Through our commitment to educational excellence, we develop within each student a love of learning and a desire for compassionate participation in the world.