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With only a few weeks to go, motivational burnout, fast-approaching deadlines and a mental countdown until the last final exam is most likely being felt by everyone. In ENGL 105i, the process of preparing and making the video essay is now under way. What once started with a discussion in our breakout room groups about other exemplary videos is about to be expected from all of us in a matter of weeks. Though the final result is most definitely going to be the most visually appealing project produced from this course, it is a long way from looking that way. The overall atmosphere of the class remains calm and collected by our day to day trips to the gym or events in our daily lives giving us that last bit of motivation. 

As we turned in Feeder 3.2, a sense of relief overcame the atmosphere of the class as we geared up for a day of discussion and critical observation. In class on Tuesday, we looked at previous video essays done by students over the past semesters. Personally, my group discussed and reflected on the well-constructed video essay that we had watched. We made personal notes from the videos towards our own storyboards and for planning our own final products. Looking at good examples has especially helped me to understand the way I need to approach a certain project for that unit. 

In class on Thursday, we workshopped storyboards for our video essays on our analyses of short stories. After entering a rabbit hole of videos and content related to our video essays, we were asked to compile our videos and images into a plan to give our partner an idea of what they would expect from the video essay. Personally, I enjoyed an assignment that did not involve too much writing and enjoyed focusing on the visual element of the project. Luckily, two short films have been made on my short story, which made my search much easier. I also enjoyed watching the short film that was made based off of my partner’s short story. I am excited and eager to see the final products that our class is able to make in a few weeks worth of time. 

This unit’s project is much different from others that we have completed in class, in terms of content and in the medium in which we present it. We were all given the choice of reading and finding a short story, which is completely unrelated to health, and to relate it back to health and medicine. In my group, a common theme stands for mental health, a problem which has either been ignored by the characters in the short story or, in others, has driven the actions of the characters throughout. 

Reflecting over the semester, I definitely feel like I have improved as a writer and I enjoy having to tie back different aspects and types of writing back to the health and medicine field. Outside of class, my other classes are ramping up the amount of work on a daily basis. I am using the last of my motivation to make sure I can get through all of it and not fall behind on my work now. As others have mentioned in class and Paul never fails to mention, our mental health is integral to our well-being and finding different ways to make sure that we are taking time off for ourselves is very important, especially at the end of the semester. For many people in our class, this looks like going outside in the beautiful spring weather, trips to the gym or meeting pets. Personally, I have enjoyed being outside and enjoying beautiful sunsets from parking decks. 

In terms of current events, a lot has been going on. Police brutality and systemic racism continue to riddle the news with heartbreaking incidents around the United States. After the conviction of Derek Chauvin, the news of Andrew Brown Jr. from Elizabeth City, NC came to light and directly impacted cities around North Carolina with nightly protests. More people, not only in our class, but others in the United States are gaining access to all three of the COVID-19 vaccines. I received my vaccine in January, as I am considered a healthcare worker in North Carolina, and am grateful that I was able to get it. Meanwhile, India is dealing with an extreme second wave, where hospital and vaccine supplies are starting to run low. More than a year into a global pandemic, it is painful to watch cases rise around the world, as we have seen similar waves occur close to home. However, I am hopeful for a fall semester on campus and with in-person classes very soon!



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Google Images, Creative Commons License.

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