It is still bewildering for me to comprehend that it has only been 22 days since I wrote, “My Message to White Students at FBU.” I vividly remember the night I wrote that blog around two in the morning. My roommate was fast asleep and I was trying not to wake her up with my loud typing. I corrected it and reread the blog over and over again. I even debated deleting the whole document altogether, fearing judgement. I was worried that the friendships and relationships I had built with faculty, staff, and students would be tarnished due to the content of the blog. I feared that students would perceive me in a negative light in and out of the classroom. I submitted my blog post that night and went to sleep feeling drained from all of my overthinking.
The next couple days were kind of hectic upon people reading the blog. Students that I didn’t know were approaching me around campus and discussed their thoughts with me. I had Facebook conversations with friends from around the country about it. I attended meetings with my wonderful mentor and dedicated faculty members about the blog. My mom and I had numerous conversations over the phone and what she thought about it. Working with Leslie Doyle and Janelle Julian, we three decided it would be beneficial to host a Forum on Inclusion, discussing some of the points I brought up.
The Forum on Inclusion that I led took place on March 15th. I was in shock to see that a little less than fifty faculty, staff, and students gathered in the very cramped LACE Center in a large circle. While we didn’t solve and address every issue at Fontbonne, we at least started a conversation. Some students disagreed with my points, but that was the intent of writing the blog. I wanted to get a larger conversation going on campus about these issues. Whether we agree or disagree, we are civilly engaging in these, at times, uncomfortable topics. I want to thank everyone who came to the forum with an open mind and willingness to learn from one another. I will close with a quote from the latest edition of Tableaux. “Remember that the dear neighbor may be the person who holds a perspective radically different than your own.”-President Pressimone.
Stay on the lookout for a second Forum on Inclusion coming your way very soon. This ongoing conversation isn’t over yet.
This semester has done one thing that have shifted my college experience, it allowed me to see my passions. Recently, I’ve been sharing many conversations around campus, with best friends, dear friends, and soon to be dear friends in our affiliated student orgs. I’ve begone to open myself up more to outside ideas about what cause of action would be best and if it lines up with my internal guidelines mentioned in my previous blog post. This shift coincided with recent meetings with Christine Keller about my career prospects. I rediscovered my desire and ability to relate and understand people through sharing my struggles with integrity and lack of strong decision-making.
So I like to talk to people, so what? Basically, everyone has at least one person they can let into their world. I chose to focus on my love of conversation because it’s an outlet to release the bottled up stress and pressure of being a college student who is spread far too thin to be healthy in body and spirit. Conversations help me to steady the ship of friendship facades and life goals.
Is Spring semester over yet? What about Summer semester?! LOL LOL. Not quite!!!
I can’t wait for summer to get here! Why?! You ask.
I’ll be traveling to Gulu, Uganda on an immersion trip with a few other FBU students this summer (end of July) and I’m very excited! Did I mention, I’M VERY EXCITED !!! 🙂
Traveling internationally is something I’m beginning to enjoy doing and I know I’ll be doing more international traveling in the future (I’m claiming it right now!) To experience life outside of the US is such a fascinating opportunity and if you allow it, it gives you a different perspective on life once you’re back home in the states. It causes you to appreciate the little things more than ever and to begin living life to fullest! At least that has been my experience.
Have you ever traveled outside of the country? What were thoughts? How did you feel about your experience?
What am I most passionate about? Wow! Great question.
I would say I’m very passionate about helping others in whatever facet I can. This can be working as a job coach within the Deaf community and seeing them succeed on their jobs and keep their jobs. Advocating for the Deaf when it comes to communication with them and/or providing accommodations for them. Helping to create and setup events and watching others partake of the things happening at the event. I love encouraging and giving to others whether it’s my time, money, or an encouraging word.
These are things I’m passionate about!