“I think in doing this kind of work the students feel more empowered to just express themselves and not worry about if they’re saying is what I, or the teacher, or whomever thinks they should be saying, and really just finding their own voice,” Nate told me after the workshop. “And I think that’s vitally important—to be not only a good student, but be an actively engaged citizen in the world.”
Felicia Presley shares her ekphrastic poem
Overall he admits to a good experience with J-town. “I really like the students; they’re bright and really willing to listen and learn. There were some good writers and good writing that came out.”
Not many graduates leave high school remembering the endless facts and formulas that helped them to pass every standardized test thrown their way. However, they do take with them the valuable experience of doing so: working hard and succeeding. From those experiences we shape our future, and when we have a grasp on something we’re passionate about, the potential is infinite. Students need to start believing that.
Photos: Lara Kinne