Walking Uphill

Stairs affect walkers more than runners. Running faster than 9 mph on level surfaces burns more calories than running up stairs, but walking up stairs burns more calories than walking at every speed, including racewalking, according to Wisconsin. Walking up stairs burns 690 calories per hour in the average 190-pound person. Treadmill inclines affect walkers less than stairs. Walking on a treadmill with a 1 percent incline burns the same number of calories as walking on flat outdoor surfaces, according to “The Complete Guide to Walking for Health, Weight Loss, and Fitness.”

Walking Comparisons

Walking up stairs in general burns more calories than walking up a treadmill’s 5 percent incline at every speed, and fewer calories than walking 4 mph up a treadmill’s 15 percent incline, according to the “Discovery Health” newsletter. Walking up stairs and treadmill inclines is easier than running up them, so 60-minute workouts might be preferable to 30-minute workouts. A 150-pound person exercising for 60 minutes burns 544 calories walking up stairs, 456 calories walking 4 mph up a treadmill’s 5 percent incline and 830 calories walking 4 mph up a treadmill’s 15 percent incline.


2017 Watson Fellows


Asia Alman – Vassar College
PROJECT – Transgressing Borders: The Speaking Power of Black Immigrant Women
Brazil, China, Jamaica, Dominican Republic, United Kingdom

My project seeks to explore the ways in which Black immigrant women tap into their voices in order to preserve their narratives of survival and healing. I seek to answer the questions of who Black immigrant women are, how citizenship affects their ability to not only live but to live safely, and why an investigation into the lives of undocumented Black immigrant women is important.


Kelvin Ampem-Darko – Wheaton College
PROJECT – Being My Brother’s Keeper: Multidimensional Models of Caregiving
Zimbabwe, India, Bolivia

During my Watson year, I will explore international caregiving models and how they are affected by the contexts in which they exist. My project aims to understand what factors define caregiving types, the struggles that caregivers face and what it means to care for the terminally ill. I hope to ascertain which caregiving models work best for the caregiver and dependent alike.


Aziz Anderson – Swarthmore College
PROJECT – Lost (or Transformed) in Translation: Evolution of Hip-Hop Culture
France, Japan, United Kingdom

For me, hip-hop was always an American cultural movement (and only that), which begged the question: Why do people internationally find hip-hop a compelling medium of expression? Using photography, I’ll record the qualities that create the universal nature of hip hop and discover how hip hop cultures have evolved as interdependent entities.


Zakiyya Ashe – Berea College
PROJECT – Hidden Minorities: Connection through Animation and Graphic Novels
Australia, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, France

During this year, I will travel to five countries essential in adding racial, gender, and LGBTQIA+ diversity to the animation pipeline. What are the mindsets of minorities pioneering this new animation art form? The countries I wish to visit encourage audiences to establish networks using animation and graphic novels as a connection medium. To understand how the marginalized identify with characters, stories, and others like them, I will collaborate with artists to explore how they have strengthened their voices through the animation industry.


Tanner Byer – Pomona College
PROJECT – Rewriting the Masculine Body as Feminine
Japan, Thailand, Australia, Germany

As a Watson fellow, my plan is two fold: -to learn how femininity is constructed onto masculine bodies through makeup, costume design, and expressive movement -and to explore the theatrical, political, and artistic communities built from these feminization rituals. Along this journey, I hope to comprehend the guiding principles behind feminization of the masculine form and question the demonization of nonconforming gender expression.


Julie Byrnes – Vassar College
PROJECT – Writing Heals: Narrative Medicine as a Means of Fighting Addiction
Ghana, United Kingdom, India, Japan

During my Watson year, I will engage with substance abuse treatment facilities around the topic of narrative medicine, a process that helps those going through addiction treatment write their own stories. I hope to share and learn how these skills help those struggling with addiction, and from the connections I make, learn more about the pain and treatment of the disease.


Amal Cheema – Wellesley College
PROJECT – At an Intersection: Organ Donation Across Religious Communities
India, Germany, United Kingdom

Organ donation is ever more critical throughout the world, but the role of religion has yet to be fully understood. While no faith or creed formally forbids organ donation from the living or deceased, there is a distinction between embodied theology and health-affecting behaviors. During my Watson year, I will use various faith-mapping and interfaith approaches to understand what happens when organs exchange across religious boundaries. In order to understand the conversations that occur, I will interview various stakeholders, from family members to nurses to religious leaders, and volunteer at relevant facilities. As a lifelong practitioner of faith, inquisitor, health scientist, and human being, I seek to understand how context influences religious decision, how medical advances inspire practical faith, and how necessity impacts our theology and health.


Sheila Chukwulozie – Amherst College
PROJECT – Dressing Culture: Creating West African Material Culture
Senegal, Sierra Leone, Trinidad, Ghana, Liberia

Culture, commonly perceived as a set of ideals that rest in the mind, also reveals itself in the materials we use for survival or pleasure. Especially in pre-colonial West Africa, where gods lived in the elements of nature, materials of the world had a spiritual quality. In those contexts, masks and cloth were important materials used to articulate cosmological beliefs. For my Watson project, I will travel to West African nations and nations with West African diaspora, to learn about traditional institutions that still exist to create these materials for cultural sustenance.


Nina Finley – Whitman College
PROJECT – One Health: The Human Impacts of Emerging Wildlife Diseases
Brazil, Madagascar, Indonesia, Malaysia, Russia

During my Watson year, I will explore five manifestations of ecosystem disease. In Brazil, leptospirosis is spreading from endangered peccaries to cattle. In Madagascar, deforestation is ushering people into contact with rodent vectors and lemur viruses. Coral bleaching is impacting commercial fisheries in Indonesia and dive tourism in Malaysia. And in the remote north of Russia, thawing reindeer carcasses are bringing once-eradicated anthrax back from the dead. In each country, I will begin by investigating the biology of the disease itself – its pathogen, host, and habitat – by spending several weeks in the field with ecologists and the local community. My guiding questions ask: How are you and your community affected by this disease? What related cultural practices or stories exist? What is the root problem? What actions are being taken to mitigate the impacts? By synthesizing my experiences with ecologists and community members, I hope to gather local solutions for the global threat of emerging wildlife disease, and their impact on biodiversity and human health.


Michaela Fisher – Wesleyan University
PROJECT – Cooperative Worlds: Exploring the Global Cooperative Economy
Spain, Argentina, New Zealand, Germany, Canada

Cooperatives are jointly-owned and democratically controlled enterprises that unite people in order to meet common needs. Worker-owners split their profits evenly and share control over decision-making processes. Co-ops return power to the hands of every worker, despite unequal class and identity privileges. On my Watson year, I will travel to understand the many ways in which co-ops can flourish or fail. While I see cooperatives as a revolutionary and beautiful idea, they can stand at odds with prevailing economic systems. Global capitalism values growth and efficiency above democratic participation and worker power. Are cooperatives able to survive, principles intact, in this economy?


Mariely Garcia – Bowdoin College
PROJECT – In the Shadows: How Marginalized Identity Affects Access to Healthcare
Cambodia, Ecuador, Guatemala Italy, South Africa

How do the marginalized parts of people’s identities affect their access to health services? During the year I seek to learn how gender, sexuality, income-level, age, and legal status act as barriers to care, impacting doctor-patient relationships and informing health outcomes. What proactive steps do healthcare institutions take to deliver comprehensive health services that are mindful of the social, political, and cultural realities of their patients? Growing my capacity for listening, supporting and empowering patients I hope to learn how to recognize, affirm, and address the needs of patients that are often hidden in the shadows.


Kava Garcia Vasquez – Macalester College
PROJECT – Skate(board) into the Sun With Me
Sweden, Spain, Cambodia, South Korea, South Africa

Skateboarding is a nucleus around which my passions for city life, female empowerment, art, and community building revolve. During my Watson year, I will explore the emancipatory potential of women’s skateboarding movements as I skate my way through three continents, connecting the women skateboarders I meet throughout my journey to one another through a series of collaborative multimedia projects.


Joseph Genualdi – Lawrence University
PROJECT – Personal Expansion Through Multi-Cultural Musical Collaboration
United Kingdom, Peru, Indonesia, India, Japan

My Watson year will be spent in five countries, steeping in unfamiliar musical traditions. Music can be a powerful tool to bridge cultural gaps. Bearing this in mind, I hope to co-create music that makes this evident, engaging in musical collaborations that push against the boundaries of existing genres.


Liam Grace-Flood – Wheaton College
PROJECT – Understanding Makerspaces to Make Better Things, Better People, and Better Communities
United Kingdom, China, Brazil Tanzania, Austria

An experimental learning workshop’s ethos and its effect on my young self helped me find passion, community, and a vision for my future. I will explore “maker culture” around the world to understand how such spaces function within, reflect, and uplift diverse communities.


Tyler Harvey – Rhodes College
PROJECT – Embodied Poverty
Guatemala, Bolivia, Morocco, Jordan, Nepal

Around the globe, poverty is directly linked to worsened health outcomes. At the core of my project is the idea that poverty can not only alter a persons chance of healthy living but their understanding of self. What factors turn poverty into an internalized belief system and how can this challenge be reversed?


Tomal Hossain – Amherst College
PROJECT – Music Cultures of Muslim Majority Communities
Senegal, Morocco, India, Indonesia

This year is about exploring the music cultures of Muslim majority communities through conversation, participation and lessons. How has music been patronized or censored by organized groups or religious doctrines? What is at stake when individuals challenge orthodox beliefs with regard to music’s place in Islam? How have musicians, concert organizers, and audience members reconciled their commitments to music with the beliefs and actions of orthodox Muslims?


Harry Johnson – Bard College
PROJECT – Playing for Change: Innovative Uses of Sport
India, United Kingdom, Australia, Dominican Republic

Sport participation and popularity differs around the globe based on site-specific socioeconomic conditions, as well as historical and cultural values. These same variables have fostered many innovative uses of sport to combat social ills afflicting communities worldwide. During my Watson year, I will explore how sports are utilized to counteract issues such as gender inequality, youth unemployment, social exclusion and elevated high school dropout rates.


Kate Joss – Davidson College
PROJECT – More Than a Game: Female Empowerment Through Sports
Bolivia, South Africa, India, New Zealand

How do sports help women fight stereotypes, get an education, improve social status, gain confidence, and build character? Just as sports influenced my development and helped me overcome childhood fears and limitations, I want to see how sports programs, on an international scale, provide similar opportunities for female growth. I will work closely with girls, coaches, teams, athletic programs and diverse communities to deepen my understanding of the impact of athletic participation and learn which models facilitate the most positive development.


Riley Konsella – Union College
PROJECT – Stuck in Traffic: Steering Offbeat Transportation Solutions through Human Pushback
Denmark, Norway, Rwanda, Singapore, Vietnam, Brazil

From cars and bicycles in Norway and Denmark to motorbikes and gondolas in Vietnam and Brazil, countries around the world have distinct approaches to transportation. I will experience the nuances of these systems and how transportation is evolving through the emergence of new technologies. Projects like self-driving cars in Singapore and autonomous drones in Rwanda signal the beginning of rapid and controversial changes in transportation. My Watson Fellowship will be spent investigating the fascinating ways in which governments solve traffic and transportation problems, and how citizens react to these changes through advocacy or resistance.


Oleksandr (Sasha) Kuzura – Grinnell College
PROJECT – Shoestring Engineering
Thailand, Peru, India, Bosnia

Western engineering often nurtures a culture of over-improvement that relies on financial investment and return to solve problems. In contrast, folk engineers from areas of scarcity rely on ingenuity and shared cultural wisdom to design simple, robust, energy- and resource-efficient technologies. On my Watson year, I will work with these engineers to understand the push-pull of modernity and the factors that influence community engineering practices.