As I mentioned in my last post, it is very hard for me to process the fact that this semester is coming to an end. Upon entering the University of Michigan, I remember countless people telling me how fast the four years would go and how quickly this time will fly by. At the time, this did not fully register with me. Senior year, graduation, and real life all seemed like a very distant and intangible future when I was a freshman moving into Mary Markley Hall. But here I am, writing this post on my last day of classes as an undergraduate college student. I truly never thought this day would come, but since it has, I would like to use this #pivot essay as an opportunity to reflect on my time here.
When I was accepted to the Sweetland Minor in Writing program, I had no idea that it would end up becoming such an influential part of my college career. I have always loved to write. Even in elementary school, writing was always my favorite subject. But when I began the Sweetland Minor in Writing program, I never imagined that I would be exposed to such a wide variety of different types of writing and different types of people.
My favorite aspect of the Sweetland Minor in Writing Program is the class time. The fact that this is my favorite aspect is certainly strange, considering it is definitely my least favorite aspect in all of my other classes. Throughout middle school and high school, English was always my favorite class. There is just something about English classes that is different than all of the other ones. All of my English classes throughout my academic career have been small classes that tend to engage in deep and meaningful life discussions. When I think back to them, I think of them almost as a community or family, and have fond memories of our class discussions and the lessons I learned. Coming to a huge school like The University of Michigan, I was very worried that I would never experience this small and tight-knit community feel in a class again since there would be so many people. However, I was pleasantly surprised when I took my first English course, English 125. While the rest of my classes were large lectures where the professor had no idea who I was and none of the students spoke during class time, my English class had the same small classroom and tight-knit feel with a professor who led us in engaging discussions during each class. This trend continued with each of my English and Writing classes to follow. While I found myself continuously dreading sitting through each of my other classes, I looked forward to attending my writing and English classes. Especially in our Capstone course this semester, I found myself fascinated with the class discussions, and excited to peer review and discuss other classmates’ work and ideas. We had such a diverse group of people in our class, and I really learned so much from each and every one of them.
In addition to my enjoyment of class time throughout the minor, I am also pleased with how much I have grown as a writer. Writing the Evolution Essay for the capstone course forced me to think long and hard about why I write, how I write, and how my writing has changed. This is something I honestly have never really thought seriously about until this year. Performing a critical analysis on all of the writing that I have done since freshman year was both difficult and enlightening. It was surprising to see what aspects of my writing had changed drastically and what aspects hadn’t changed at all. This process really helped me to identify how much my writing had grown and evolved over these past four years, but also what I still need to focus on and work on as I move forward. I also was excited to use these findings and apply them in my final Capstone project. It was extremely fulfilling for me to find a way to use the Capstone to show how much my writing had evolved, and how I have become capable of writing in so many different formats and genres.
The Sweetland Minor in Writing has really shown me that writing is everywhere. No matter what I end up doing in the future, writing will be a part of it. As I have been going through the interview process this semester, there has not been one interview where the Minor in Writing has not been brought up. “Oh wow, you are a minor in writing? That’s fantastic!” is usually somewhere along the lines of how it goes. It seems that no matter what industry you are in, you need to be able to write. The Minor in Writing has exposed me to so many different forms of writing, even some that I didn’t know existed. I know feel equipped with the necessary skills to succeed in business, professional, personal, creative, administrative, and new media writing. The Minor in Writing, especially the Capstone course, really forced me to break out of my comfort zone and try new writing styles, voices, tones, formats, and mediums. While it was certainly challenging, I am thankful for it. Completing the capstone course, portfolio, and project was without a doubt one of the most rewarding experiences I have had throughout my four years at the University. I am sad that it has to come to an end, but I am very grateful for having had the opportunity to be a part of this wonderful program! I am looking forward to taking the skills I have learned with me on my next step into the real world.