Teach About U.S. Blog

Herzlich Willkommen!

Herzlich Willkommen!

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Alexandra Magaard // 16 September 2014 //  #GoingGreen

Hi everyone! Hallo allerseits!

Herzlich willkommen to the official blog for the U.S. Embassy’s “Going Green 2014 Project.”  My name is Alex Magaard, and I am the lucky person in charge of the blog.  I am the U.S. Embassy’s virtual intern, who will address your questions about the Moodle site, development of the project or any other concern.

You will be able to check this site for current updates and insights into American sustainability initiatives and perspectives.  Every Monday I will announce the “expert of the week,” whom you and your students might want to contact.  This will provide background information on the expert.

My background:  I am a 21 year old college senior finishing my Political Science and German Language Bachelor of Arts degrees at James Madison University.  I have always been interested in the environment and believe that my activism started when I was eight years old and built a replica of The Cathedral of Notre Dame out of re-used egg cartons for my art class.

I grew up in Wayzata, Minnesota. , which for anyone who does NOT know where that is (I would be surprised if you did) – Wayzata is a suburb of Minneapolis, Minnesota. Or as I tell friends, “I’m from the center of the U.S.A. and hours below Canada!”

I grew up biking downtown to the Lakes (or to the Ice cream store) with family and friends.  Minneapolis is continuously ranked as America’s “most fit city.”  According to the American Fitness Index, Minneapolis has won the title for the past three years.  This directly coincides with Minneapolis’ environmentalism.  Minneapolis earns the title “the fittest city,” due to its rampant bike paths.  The United States Census Bureau Supplemental Survey has also named Minneapolis the number one bicycle commuter city in America.

The city of Minneapolis formed these bike paths to promote Environmental activism, alternative transportation and Minnesotans’ health.   Increased bike paths and more, such as citywide plans to increase alternative-fuel vehicles, are a part of the city of Minneapolis’ 2005 Sustainability Initiative – a local attempt to combat Global Climate Change.

Indeed, the United States is full of various local and national attempts to promote sustainability, and you will be able to learn more about those within the next few months.   You can also read news about and connect with others through the Going Green 2014 project.  Vielen dank für ihre Aufmerksamkeit – thank you for your attention and good luck with the project, everyone!

Always remember: when the going gets tough, the tough go green.


Alexandra Magaard is a native of Wayzata, Minnesota and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and German Language from James Madison University. In 2014-15, Alex served as a virtual intern for the U.S. Embassy and the Teach About US blog’s first author. A passionate supporter of environmentalism and green topics, Alex says that her activism began when she built a replica of the Cathedral of Notre Dame out of re-used egg cartons for her art class at age eight. She is now working for a German company based in Washington D.C.