It’s not goodbye… it’s see you later!!

You all know how much I’ve struggled to blog this semester and since I haven’t really been in the headspace to think about schoolwork I thought I’d use this last blog post to thank all of you!

Each of you brought something very special to the class and helped to make it a semester that I’ll never forget! So, as a token of my appreciation and it hopes that it’ll make you feel a little better about finals I would like to thank each of you personally!!

Zach: Thank you for pushing us all. Your project and the passion behind it truly inspired me to reach higher. I truly admire your constant desire to become a better “YOU”!

Jude: Thank you for being a good listener and for always having positive to say. I grew to appreciate your chill personality and the fact that you always had great things to say about everyone else’s projects.

Fatima: Thank you for always thinking out of the box. Whenever we workshopped I knew that I could always count on you to throw out some bangin’ ideas and get our juices flowing!

Brynn: Thank you for your transparency! You were always very open about your points of struggle in regards to the project and it helped me to remember that I wasn’t alone!! PS: your project was so unique and I can’t get enough of the cute pics of baby Brynn!!

Eva: Thanks for exposing me to different forms of our art! I really appreciated your project and the personal things that both you and Hannah share in the podcasts. If it weren’t for your project I wouldn’t have gotten the chance to hear about all of the foreign artists with cool names or how you got into painting or Hannah’s painting series!

Natalie: Thank you for making such cool characters! No matter the type of day that I was having your cool and spunky drawings always made me smile. PS: can’t wait to see your project in print!! *wink wink*

Last, but NOT least…

T: Thank you for pushing us all to take our projects one step further and produce things that will exist outside of this class!! You were such a good motivator and just a great person to bounce ideas off of!

Welp, since this is a writing class and all… I feel like I have to say something about my project so here it goes…

I’m so happy I did this project and I hope that the mini-me’s that come to U of M use it and love it as much as I do. If it weren’t for this class I don’t think I would’ve ever done this and I think it is sooooo important for fostering a more inclusive environment on my campus!

Until next time,

Sydni

Update on the Coat of Many Colors

I feel as though I have been doing everything, but blogging this semester. Mostly because I prefer to just talk sometimes (since I do so much writing both inside and outside of class) and also because it’s just one of those things that I keep moving to the bottom of my to-do list. So… here’s my shot at it.

 

Things that I want to get done this week:

  • Interview Fitz (medical student at U of M) about his experience as a person of color and a medical student. As a medical student who was been through the process and now mentors students like me I think that he will be able to provide some great insight!
  • Get some quotes!! I want to include some quotes from people with different majors (pre-med) talking about why they like their major and how they (if applicable) they feel that it prepared them for applying to medical schools.
    • PS: if you have a dope major (wink. wink. Zach, Eva, Fatima) it would be helpful if you could give me a cool little pull quote in the comments LOL.
  • Play around with Google Sites a little bit more. While I appreciate the simplicity of Google Sites and the way that it is compatible with other google products (Docs, Drive, etc.), I am very bothered by how limited it is– can you believe you can’t even save the font color?? (UGH, this really bothers me). Anyways, I know I don’t want to switch my platform, because I don’t want the aesthetics of the website to be distracting
  • Companion essay — No explanation, I just need to get to it and get to it fast!
  • Finish cutting the videos into smaller, more digestible clips so that I can thread them through the site (I want to give my audience the option of watching the full-length video, but still be able to get with they need if they don’t have time).

I think that that’s it for this week. It seems like my to-do list just keeps getting longer and longer, but I am determined to get these things done. Please send some end-of-the-semester motivation because I definitely have the end-of-the-semester blues!!

Workshoppin’

The worst part about being a visionary is having too many visions. Too many ideas, too many hopes, not enough time. When I began this project I envisioned a small site, but as time went on I realized that my community needed so much more. I started to feel as though I would be failing my peers and those who will come after us if I didn’t put forth all of the knowledge and experience that I have. However, with that feeling came great responsibility and at this point in the project I think that it’s time to go at my draft with a big, red, ballpoint pen (it’s actually not a pen, it’s just the strikeout feature on Google Docs) and decide what should stay and what should go.

As we workshopped today I got so much great input on the wonderful places this project could go, but I also sought out input on what things should be eliminated to ensure that the project is as practical and useful as possible. Just from hearing people’s excitement about the video portion of the project, I was able to decide that I would like for this part to take a “front seat” and be a part of the project that the viewers see very early on. I think that I have a voice and perspective that will captivate my audience. As I reflect on today’s workshop and think about the things that I want to see in the project I think about young Sydni. What would freshman Sydni want? What questions did freshman Sydni go wrong? What does Freshman Sydni want to save the mini-Sydnis from?

The truth is, freshman Sydni needed guidance and direction and she needed it from someone who she could trust to lead her in the right direction. She needed someone to instill confidence and power in her so that when the journey got difficult her, her believe in her purpose would’ve waver. This is what I want to give to my audience. I want make this project more intimate than I previously envisioned, allowing the watchers to get to know me for who I am. My hope is that after hearing about my struggles and the struggles of those around me, they will be inspired to continue their journey!

I also received another piece of great advice: to consider taking out things that are not specific to the pre-medical community. This is an idea that I am greatly struggling with because I fear that doing so will exclude a large chunk of my audience seeing as the resources that are specific to pre-medical students (AMCAS, MCAT, application process) may not be as relevant to underclassman (because they likely aren’t thinking about these things yet). However, on the other hand I think that would make the project similar to one of my models, the Career Center’s Med App Ctools page, because although the information may not apply to everyone, it would encourage underclassman to look ahead to the future.  What do you guys think about this?

 

 

 

The Fourth Part of the Brain

My eportfolio is titled Fourth Part of the Brain and is inspired by the movie “Fourth Part of the Brain” by Nenad Dizdarevic which is based on the Bosnian civil war. In the movie one of the main characters Sabina says that her brains is like four compartments each holding something different and that in the fourth part she locks away all of the things that she wishes to forget. I put my own twist on Sabina’s quote, using the brain as a metaphor to link my interest in writing & medicine thus, each part of my “brain” houses a different part of me.

Although this course is ending, my e-portfolio is still a work in progress and in the future I hope to be able to add the edited version of speech as the Global Citizen of the Year more pieces of writing from other courses as they related to my theme.

Enjoy!

https://sydniwil.wixsite.com/fourthpartofthebrain

Becoming a lyricist!

lyr·i·cist

ˈlirəsəst/

noun

to be on top of the rap game, providing unequalled wordplay and ill skills

 

In the hip-hop world they say that the best rappers aren’t just rappers, they’re lyricists. They spit their rhymes to tell a story that flows. They use metaphors and similes to play with their words. They demand your attention with lyrics that not only entertain, but tell a story that is so compelling it feels like you’re experiencing it in real time.

 

Tupac’s Brenda’s Got a Baby tells the story of a 12-year-old girl in the hood whose pregnancy forces her into prostitution and the drug game.

 

Eminem’s Stan tells the story of an obsessive fan who kills himself and his girlfriend after not receiving a reply from his favorite rapper Eminem.

 

Ludacris’s Runaway Love tells the story of multiple young girls who are the victims of rape, domestic violence, drugs, and other horrifying realities that attack Black communities.

 

All of these tell stories that do a lot more than just rhyme to a beat.

 

————————————————————–

 

If you want to be a lyricist the first thing that you need to know is that it isn’t about rhyme scheme or beats. It’s about imagery, metaphors, essentiality, and intentionality. Nothing a lyricist does is unintentional.

  1. Every rap starts with a story; it’s the most important part. The song is just the medium for expressing the story, but the most important part of the song is that the reader feels as if they are there and connected to the narrative thus, some of the most common conventions of raps (rhyme schemes, choruses, hooks, etc.) may be broken in order to prioritize the story.
  2. After the story comes the style. What makes rappers unique is that everyone’s style is different. Every piece of the song must be carefully constructed to drive home the purpose of the story, but that doesn’t mean that it has to be chronological or even grammatically correct.  Some artists choose to preview the end of the story to capture the listens’ attention while others tend to build up their reader’s anticipation. This is your chance to be YOU. Take risks. Be adventurous. Allow your creativity to shine.
  3.  After the story comes the chorus. The key is to make it short and sweet, so that it doesn’t take away from the narrative. Even still the chorus must be catchy enough to grasp the listener (yes, it’s as difficult as it sounds).

If you need more help becoming a lyricist check out what listener’s of rap say about what it takes.

As unartistic as I am, I plan to make a rap using these three easy steps. The easy part is that I already have my memoir from experiment 1, which I will convert to a rap in order to attract the same audience and hopefully broaden it. Educational research shows rap music as an effective way to reinforce learning therefore, I hope that my rap song will serve as way to reiterate the lessons taught in my memoir and in the end, encourage youth who’ve endured a lot to look past their struggles. I hope that with my story being in the form of a song it will broaden my audience and in turn, attract students who do not enjoy reading.

So you want to be Facebook famous?

Writing a Facebook post is easy right? I mean, the majority of us do it on a daily basis. Just type what you’re thinking, maybe add a photo, and then post. Wrong. While social media posts seem trivial and effortless, there is actually a science to creating a post that is captivating and attractive, yet simple and concise at the same time. Here’s how:

 

Social media is a way to almost instantly connect with hundreds of people all at once, thus, the first mistake that people make in creating their Facebook posts is assuming that it should be quick. While the perfect Facebook post should be short (no more than 40 characters if it’s possible), they are not meant to be impromptu although they may appear so. The best way to achieve this is to include links to places where your followers can get more info.

 

But how does such a short piece reach so many people?

 

The key is this.

Posting it at peak hours and making the post multimodal (a picture, a video, a hyperlink) so that to entice the reader, making them wonder more about the subject, but not loosing your creditability. You see, what makes some one insta-famous or Facebook-famous (if we’re judging by their number of followers) is not the quality of their post (unfortunately), but instead the number of people who view and respond to it. The average Facebook post only reaches about 12% of your friends list so attractiveness is amongst one of the most important parts as you want your followers to respond and ultimately share!

 

When writing a Facebook just remember “REST” and you’ll be set:

  1. Response Necessary (you want your readers to feel the need to respond)
  2. Engaging
  3. Straight forward
  4. Timed Perfectly

If you’re still a little shaky watch this video & I’m sure you’ll get it down in no time!

So I’m going to give it a try… let’s see if I become Facebook famous using my own advice. The plan is to use my original piece which was a personal statement discussing how I define myself, my plans for my future, and how I define success in order to create a Facebook post which summarizes my vision of struggles and how one’s struggles are also the starting point for their success. I hope that my Facebook post will attract my Facebook followers and serve as a way to empower them to look past their struggles and discover how they can transform these challenges into their own version of success.

I hope that by making this post on Facebook, a social media outlet which is often used for people to express the emotions in a “safe” virtual space, this post will reach those who need it the most, making this an appropriate place to join this conversation.

They’re Everywhere!

As I went through my week I realized that I saw multimodal texts everywhere that I went. From the moment that I woke up to the moment that I went to bed I interacted with a variety of multimodal texts, the majority of which were ones that I wouldn’t have considered texts before this assignment. In the morning, I woke up and looked around my room. I observed my surroundings more than usual and I realized that all five modes (spatial, gestural, visual, aural, and linguistic) were present. That same morning, I went to an organic chemistry lecture which also included all five modes, but the most interesting part was that the modes were presented in a completely different way. In my room, the calendar and paintings with cliché sayings represent the linguistic mode while the headings the professor wrote on the board were the linguistic aspect of the classroom. Similarly, the spatial mode was shown in how the furniture and paintings ware arranged in my room while the professor’s note format contributed to the spatial mode in the classroom. In my room I hear various sounds (the shower running, my candle burning, my roommates talking) while in the lecture the primary sound comes from other students and the professor. Lastly, the classroom’s gestural mode comes primarily from the teacher moving around to write on the board and the students writing notes while the gestural mode in my room is me (doing laundry, making the bed, snoozing my alarm clock 382 times).

Later in the week I realized that my FaceTime call with a friend from home was multimodal and so were the flowers, bear, and accompanying message that I received from my boyfriend earlier in the week. Through this observational study I recognized that multimodal texts come in very different forms. Some are publications and some are things that we come in contact with everyday and often what makes them multimodal is completely different. This is where the rhetorical situation comes to play. It is the differing rhetorical situations that make the texts different, but it is also what makes it possible for us to see multimodal texts in so may different forms.

All of the multimodal texts that I observed were current and not published pieces, but I believe this to be because I was looking for more “out-of-the-box” texts than traditional ones. Although the texts differed in time period, rhetorical situation, and in the way that they were presented, they all shared one area of common ground: I was their audience. This observation presented an interesting point as to how they were all different. I realized that while modes could potentially have very similar rhetorical situations, a very different text results. Whether it be a football game or an email, the five modes are everywhere!