Major: Master of Arts in Cultural Studies
BA: Communication and Art History
"I love diving into sources and writing textual analysis research papers. For my personal well-being, I enjoy expressing my passions and frustrations through poetry."
Sitting on the floor in front of my mother’s bookshelves, I poured over the pages of the World Book Encyclopedias. I couldn’t take it all in fast enough. I told my mom that I wanted to learn more; she said to pick something and “write about it.” At first I didn’t understand—how could I write about something if I didn’t know more about it?
Hesitantly, I took her advice and began writing about manatees. The result was a very short paper that simply regurgitated the small encyclopedia entry on the species. After showing my mother, she asked me how I felt about my paper, to which I responded: “it’s no good.”
That day I realized that a strong research paper is more than just stating facts. I had so many more questions about manatees than what the encyclopedia offered. In order to make my paper more unique and more interesting, I would have to ask those questions and dig to find the answers.
The more I wrote, the more questions I had, and the deeper I dug. Looking back, I understand my mother’s cunning motives. I firmly believe that the writing process is not simply a means to an end, but that it is an end in itself. It is an opportunity to investigate a topic in greater depth, all the while learning through the writing process. This process is continual; the more we write, the more we question, and the more we learn.
I feel that it is important to recognize that writing is not something that can be perfected, but rather, something that writers should always be developing—no matter how experienced. If there is one thing that I hope all writers will eventually embrace, it is that there are always opportunities to learn and there is always room for growth in writing.