Most of us spend our college years doing assignments that we feel do not accomplish anything. For the first time in my college career, I had a professor ask more of my class. He encouraged us to change our world through writing. Sitting in Professor Brian Lawrence’s English 414 class, I was overwhelmed with the thought of having to use my writing to change the world. How could that even be possible? Professor Lawrence explained that we were expected to either write something inspirational or instructional in order to change the world around us.
I debated long and hard on what I wanted to do, and it wasn’t until after hearing all the great things my classmates planned on doing that I made my decision. I decided to share this assignment not only to give my classmates the recognition they deserve for their efforts, or even explain what an amazing, influential person Professor Lawrence is, but to encourage students to not look at assignments as a grade, but as stepping stones to change the world around them.
Each of my classmates are changing their world in their own way. Earl King, an English Education major and a much respected member of my class is writing a series of articles in his local newspaper about controversial and personal issues to inform the public and hopefully help to change the world. His uncle was recently diagnosed with cancer so Earl is beginning his newspaper articles about the effects, both positive and negative about having a loved one suffer from a disease. He aspires to offer hope and insight on the subject, and instill hope in anyone reaching for it. Brittany Hoxit, also an Education major, wants give recognition to the outstanding teachers throughout Jackson County. Brittany is writing a letter to the editor of The Sylva Herald about the struggles that the remarkable teachers throughout Jackson Country have to deal with because of the current state of our nation’s economy. She wants to inform the general public about how these passionate teachers are coping with the budget cuts and still striving to do the best that they can for their students. Brittany hopes that through her letter, steps can be made to boost funding for these teachers, or at the very least let them know how special and appreciated they are in our community. Adam Shapiro is taking a more personal approach to this difficult assignment. Adam wants to use his passion and exceptional talent in writing short stories to write about the current war we are fighting in Iraq. Adam hopes that a non-fictional story about the soldiers fighting for our freedom will help people understand the traumatic situation that we are currently in. He wants anyone who reads his story to get a sense of how real and devastating the war is to our country even though it doesn’t take place on American soil. Adam’s creative writing ability is sure to open the eyes and minds of anyone who engages in his story. Britney Sidden actively works in changing her world by participation in a Bluegrass gospel band. She currently sings with the band in her church as well as neighboring churches. Her inspiration lyrics sing praise to the Lord and helps spread God’s word. Through this assignment, Britney intends to take her involvement in the band a step further by writing her own song for the band to perform. She wants to write about her everlasting love and faith. Britney hopes that through her lyrics others will be inspired to explore the word of God. I am thankful to have had the opportunity to share the miraculous things my classmates are doing, regardless of how large or small they may be. I also wish them the best of luck and hope that each of them are able to achieve their goals in changing the crazy world that we l