Penn State Road Rules

Industrial Revolution and Beyond

cement building with 4 tall smoke stacks in frontJonathan Mathews

An old coal plant.

This May sixteen Penn State undergraduates and three faculty members spent two weeks traveling through Iceland and the United Kingdom. They stayed in youth hostels, ate at truckstops, rode for hours in large diesel-powered vans, and suffered through days and days of bone-chilling rain. Their mission: to chart the West's progress from 18th-century rural economy to the post-industrial economy of the 21st century, focusing on the significant role that energy resources have played in that transformation. Along the way, they toured coal mines 450-feet below the ground, scaled fences to get close to windmills, and were wined and dined by executives from Shell Oil's biofuels program.

Follow what happens when students and faculty abandon the formality of the classroom for a chance to live and learn together in the real world. Dana Bauer reports.

Last Updated May 01, 2003