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Kaylee Savage-Cutcher

1355

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Finalist

Bio

Creativity is magic to me. It’s the ability to make something out of nothing. An artist can turn a mere sheet of paper into a photorealistic portrait or give an audience a real look into a world of fantasy. Written stories allow one to experience the world from another’s point of view, letting them travel the world from the comfort of their own home. My passion for fantasy is one in the same with my creativity. When I write, it sometimes feels as if my characters take over the narrative, forcing me to play along with their whims. Visual art provides me with a means to express my ideas about the world, making my feelings tangible in a wondrous way. The world needs more magic. My dream is to become a published author, eventually completing all of the half-written books and projects that I have running through my brain. I’m planning to start pursuing a BA in English with a creative writing concentration and a BS in Studio Arts at Tennessee Technological University during the Fall 2023 semester. My secondary degree will help me to handle visual aspects of my written works, such as illustrations, along with expanding my creative abilities and opening me up to new experiences. I’m also seeking to complete minors in Spanish and Honors. As a graduating IB Diploma candidate, I am dedicated to my academic dreams. I want to play a role in building a more empathetic, kind, and empowering world. My art, both written and visual, reflect these values. I also have an interest in advocacy work. Making the world more magical will be a difficult endeavor, but I’m up for the challenge.

Education

Tennessee Technological University

Bachelor's degree program
2023 - 2028
  • Majors:
    • Visual and Performing Arts, Other
    • English Language and Literature/Letters, Other
  • Minors:
    • Foreign Languages, Literatures, and Linguistics, Other

Miscellaneous

  • Desired degree level:

    Doctoral degree program (PhD, MD, JD, etc.)

  • Graduate schools of interest:

  • Transfer schools of interest:

  • Majors of interest:

    • English Language and Literature/Letters, Other
    • Fine and Studio Arts
  • Not planning to go to medical school
  • Career

    • Dream career field:

      Creative Writing

    • Dream career goals:

      Author

    • Student Worker

      Child Development Lab
      2023 – Present1 year

    Public services

    • Advocacy

      Students of Stonewall — Member
      2021 – 2023

    Future Interests

    Advocacy

    Politics

    Volunteering

    Philanthropy

    Elijah's Helping Hand Scholarship Award
    Art is magic to me. An artist, no matter their medium, has the ability to create something brilliant out of seemingly nothing at all. All a writer needs is pen and paper to bewitch an audience into caring for a world and people most say never existed at all. A visual artist can conjure up visions that allow viewers to see inside their head with just a canvas and charcoal or paint. A potter transforms the dirt of the Earth itself into whatever shape they please. Artists have the ability to plant emotions straight into an audience's heads without ever revealing who they are or their magician’s secrets. The best fantasy stories, in my opinion, are the ones where characters face trials over and over again. A captivating novel features a struggle that a reader desperately needs to see resolved. Still, characters can’t suffer without trying to overcome it. They have to constantly reach for the next win, as an audience will only continue reading if there’s a chance their hopes will come true. I try to resemble the characters I create in this way; I remind myself that if I give up on my goals, nothing will change. As a queer and disabled artist, it sometimes feels like the entire world, including my own body, is against my success. I’ve had to fight for the accommodations I need to function in academic settings, oftentimes while feeling that the very people I have to work with would rather see me hide my true self than accept that I can thrive in my individuality. Those emotions are already difficult to come to terms with, and my desire to make the world more kind, welcoming, and accommodating sometimes seems impossible. Through my doubts, I turn to the power of pens and paintbrushes. I believe that art is able to change the world. It forces an audience to empathize with others, reconsider their worldviews, and feel seen in a world that can be so isolating. I incorporate my experiences and struggles into my creative works, in part for catharsis, but also in order to communicate my experiences to others. I want others to not only consider my perspectives, but also think about what positive changes they want to make in their communities. I do this through both written works and visual art in genres of fantasy and magical realism, sometimes with horror elements. I love that I can use the otherworldly to convey something raw and real that reflects back on the real world. In my experience, using metaphor allows me to get at the true heart of my sentiment more effectively than saying my thoughts plainly. My primary career goal is to be an author, as I want to make as much magic as I can. I hope that my magic can make a difference.
    Dwight "The Professor" Baldwin Scholarship
    Art is magic to me. An artist, no matter their medium, has the ability to create something brilliant out of seemingly nothing at all. All a writer needs is pen and paper to bewitch an audience into caring for a world and people most say never existed at all. A visual artist can conjure up visions that allow viewers to see inside their head with just a canvas and charcoal or paint. A potter transforms the dirt of the Earth itself into whatever shape they please. Artists have the ability to plant emotions straight into an audience's heads without ever revealing who they are or their magician’s secrets. The best fantasy stories, in my opinion, are the ones where characters face trials over and over again. A captivating novel features a struggle that a reader desperately needs to see resolved. Still, characters can’t suffer without trying to overcome it. They have to constantly reach for the next win, as an audience will only continue reading if there’s a chance their hopes will come true. I try to resemble the characters I create in this way; I remind myself that if I give up on my goals, nothing will change. As a queer and disabled artist, it sometimes feels like the entire world, including my own body, is against my success. I’ve had to fight for the accommodations I need to function in academic settings, oftentimes while feeling that the very people I have to work with would rather see me hide my true self than accept that I can thrive in my individuality. Those emotions are already difficult to come to terms with, and my desire to make the world more kind, welcoming, and accommodating sometimes seems impossible. Through my doubts, I turn to the power of pens and paintbrushes. I believe that art is able to change the world. It forces an audience to empathize with others, reconsider their worldviews, and feel seen in a world that can be so isolating. I incorporate my experiences and struggles into my creative works, in part for catharsis, but also in order to communicate my experiences to others. I want others to not only consider my perspectives, but also think about what positive changes they want to make in their communities. I do this through both written works and visual art in genres of fantasy and magical realism, sometimes with horror elements. I love that I can use the otherworldly to convey something raw and real that reflects back on the real world. In my experience, using metaphor allows me to get at the true heart of my sentiment more effectively than saying my thoughts plainly. My primary career goal is to be an author, as I want to make as much magic as I can. I hope that my magic can make a difference. Receiving financial aid for pursuing my degrees in creative writing and visual arts helps me to become independent despite my struggles in life, as my goal is to receive my education without debt. I’m in the work study program at my college and have received merit scholarships for test scores, but they aren’t enough to completely cover the required expenses at my university. Graduating with no debt would help me start off on the right foot once I graduate, especially considering I may face extra financial difficulties due to the ways in which I’m marginalized.
    Robert and Suzi DeGennaro Scholarship for Disabled Students
    Art is magic to me. An artist, no matter their medium, has the ability to create something brilliant out of seemingly nothing at all. All a writer needs is pen and paper to bewitch an audience into caring for a world and people most say never existed at all. A visual artist can conjure up visions that allow viewers to see inside their head with just a canvas and charcoal or paint. A potter transforms the dirt of the Earth itself into whatever shape they please. Artists have the ability to plant emotions straight into an audience's heads without ever revealing who they are or their magician’s secrets. The best fantasy stories, in my opinion, are the ones where characters face trials over and over again. A captivating novel features a struggle that a reader desperately needs to see resolved. Still, characters can’t suffer without trying to overcome it. They have to constantly reach for the next win, as an audience will only continue reading if there’s a chance their hopes will come true. I try to resemble the characters I create in this way; I remind myself that if I give up on my goals, nothing will change. As a queer and disabled artist, it sometimes feels like the entire world, including my own body, is against my success. I’ve had to fight for the accommodations I need to function in academic settings, oftentimes while feeling that the very people I have to work with would rather see me hide my true self than accept that I can thrive in my individuality. Those emotions are already difficult to come to terms with, and my desire to make the world more kind, welcoming, and accommodating sometimes seems impossible. Through my doubts, I turn to the power of pens and paintbrushes. I believe that art is able to change the world. It forces an audience to empathize with others, reconsider their worldviews, and feel seen in a world that can be so isolating. I incorporate my experiences and struggles into my creative works, in part for catharsis, but also in order to communicate my experiences to others. I want others to not only consider my perspectives, but also think about what positive changes they want to make in their communities. I do this through both written works and visual art in genres of fantasy and magical realism, sometimes with horror elements. I love that I can use the otherworldly to convey something raw and real that reflects back on the real world. In my experience, using metaphor allows me to get at the true heart of my sentiment more effectively than saying my thoughts plainly. My primary career goal is to be an author, as I want to make as much magic as I can. I hope that my magic can make a difference. Receiving financial aid for pursuing my degrees in creative writing and visual arts helps me to become independent despite my struggles in life, as my goal is to receive my education without debt. I’m in the work study program at my college and have received merit scholarships for test scores, but they aren’t enough to completely cover the required expenses at my university. Graduating with no debt would help me start off on the right foot once I graduate, especially considering I may face extra financial difficulties due to the ways in which I’m marginalized.
    Bright Lights Scholarship
    Art is magic to me. An artist, no matter their medium, has the ability to create something brilliant out of seemingly nothing at all. All a writer needs is pen and paper to bewitch an audience into caring for a world and people most say never existed at all. A visual artist can conjure up visions that allow viewers to see inside their head with just a canvas and charcoal or paint. A potter transforms the dirt of the Earth itself into whatever shape they please. Artists have the ability to plant emotions straight into an audience's heads without ever revealing who they are or their magician’s secrets. The best fantasy stories, in my opinion, are the ones where characters face trials over and over again. A captivating novel features a struggle that a reader desperately needs to see resolved. Still, characters can’t suffer without trying to overcome it. They have to constantly reach for the next win, as an audience will only continue reading if there’s a chance their hopes will come true. I try to resemble the characters I create in this way; I remind myself that if I give up on my goals, nothing will change. As a queer and disabled artist, it sometimes feels like the entire world, including my own body, is against my success. I’ve had to fight for the accommodations I need to function in academic settings, oftentimes while feeling that the very people I have to work with would rather see me hide my true self than accept that I can thrive in my individuality. Those emotions are already difficult to come to terms with, and my desire to make the world more kind, welcoming, and accommodating sometimes seems impossible. Through my doubts, I turn to the power of pens and paintbrushes. I believe that art is able to change the world. It forces an audience to empathize with others, reconsider their worldviews, and feel seen in a world that can be so isolating. I incorporate my experiences and struggles into my creative works, in part for catharsis, but also in order to communicate my experiences to others. I want others to not only consider my perspectives, but also think about what positive changes they want to make in their communities. I do this through both written works and visual art in genres of fantasy and magical realism, sometimes with horror elements. I love that I can use the otherworldly to convey something raw and real that reflects back on the real world. In my experience, using metaphor allows me to get at the true heart of my sentiment more effectively than saying my thoughts plainly. My primary career goal is to be an author, as I want to make as much magic as I can. I hope that my magic can make a difference. Receiving financial aid for pursuing my degrees in creative writing and visual arts helps me to become independent despite my struggles in life, as my goal is to receive my education without debt. I’m in the work study program at my college and have received merit scholarships for test scores, but they aren’t enough to completely cover the required expenses at my university. Graduating with no debt would help me start off on the right foot once I graduate, especially considering I may face extra financial difficulties due to the ways in which I’m marginalized.
    Reginald Kelley Scholarship
    Art is magic to me. An artist, no matter their medium, has the ability to create something brilliant out of seemingly nothing at all. All a writer needs is pen and paper to bewitch an audience into caring for a world and people most say never existed at all. A visual artist can conjure up visions that allow viewers to see inside their head with just a canvas and charcoal or paint. A potter transforms the dirt of the Earth itself into whatever shape they please. Artists have the ability to plant emotions straight into an audience's heads without ever revealing who they are or their magician’s secrets. As a child, I was always fascinated with the fantastical. I never understood why characters in books and movies would always choose to return home from the magical worlds they were transported to. I think that’s part of why I’ve always been drawn to creativity. At age three, I was dictating stories to my mother to write down, because I didn’t yet know how to read. By the time I was four, I had a distinctive art style when I drew people. Writing is so ingrained in my being that I don’t exactly remember when I decided to dedicate my life to it, but it was likely in fourth grade, when I started writing my first book and finally put my imaginative brain on the page to share. I always enjoyed making art, but it was in eighth grade when I began to take my drawings more seriously, intentionally trying to practice and improve my technique and accuracy. My skills have had plenty of time to develop and expand, and now I also create short stories, poetry, oil paintings, ink drawings, clay works, and fiber pieces, along with other avenues I’m continuously exploring. I’m excited for my interests to grow even further during my education. I gravitate towards writing fantasy and magical realism, sometimes with horror elements, and I often feature imagery from these genres in my visual works. I use my art as a vehicle to express my emotions, fears, experiences, and perspectives; I love that I can use the otherworldly to convey something raw and real. In my experience, using metaphor allows me to get at the true heart of my sentiment more effectively than saying my thoughts plainly, and I’ve even discovered hidden aspects of myself through my creative processes. I frequently discuss themes surrounding morality, death and grief, divinity and mortality, mental health and disability, freedom and self-control, the implications of non-humanity, and the impact of hardship and trauma. I’m regularly inspired by nature, ancient mythologies, and other artists’ works. My primary career goal is to become an author. I’m currently working on a novel, as well as various short stories. Since I know I can’t expect my writing to sustain me financially, I’ve considered a few additional career paths, such as being a librarian, a writing professor, or an editor for a publishing house. I also want to incorporate my passion for visual arts into my professional future somehow, and I’ve thought about being an illustrator or book cover designer. Regardless, I’m hoping to continue creating and potentially start selling non-book related art along with my other life paths. To me, leading a fulfilling life means making as much magic as I can. If my magic empowers others like it empowers me, a more creative, kind, and understanding world can be summoned into existence.
    Book Lovers Scholarship
    Anne of Green Gables by L. M. Montgomery is loved internationally. Prince Edward Island’s Cavendish, which Anne’s town of Avonlea is based off of, is described by Mary Rubio as “a summer mecca for tourists, who come from all over the world” (66). Anne is able to charm people across cultural divides because of her signature imagination. Her creativity is an intrinsic part of her, and she never grows out of her reverence for fantasy. Still, she struggles at times to separate reality and her imagination. Anne’s life is portrayed with both nuance and kindness, accepting all readers for both their abilities and their flaws. Rubio states that a collision between adulthood and childhood allows Anne of Green Gables to explore teenagerhood. Montgomery published the book at a time when there was little to no cultural divide between being a child and an adult. However, Anne still shows traits similar to the modern teenager, such as rebelliousness and rejection of the status quo. She gradually takes on adult characteristics throughout the book, as Rubio explains, “Anne… slowly matures, taming down her passion and imagination, until she is a beloved member of the community at the end” (70). Although Anne “tames” her imagination, she does not reject it entirely, instead learning when her imagination is a skill and how to gain self-control when it might be to her detriment. In keeping her unique perspectives as she ages, Anne is a healthy influence on her community; “In the process of teaching the Avonlea folk to feel joy in living, to appreciate beauty in nature, and to express love… Anne enlarges not only their experience of life, but also their philosophical concept of duty” (Rubio 71). Anne grows up without changing herself. She gives audiences an example of growing up that is empowering and fun instead of monotonous and unforgiving. Everyone should read Anne of Green Gables by L. M. Montgomery because it encourages readers, both young and old, to be true to themselves as they mature and hold on to the beauty of life that makes it worth living. Rubio, Mary. “The Architect of Adolescence.” Such a Simple Little Tale, edited by Mavis Reimer, The Children’s Literature Association and The Scarecrow Press, Inc., 1992, pp. 65-82.
    Janean D. Watkins Overcoming Adversity Scholarship
    Art is magic to me. An artist, no matter their medium, has the ability to create something brilliant out of seemingly nothing at all. All a writer needs is pen and paper to bewitch an audience into caring for a world and people most say never existed at all. A visual artist can conjure up visions that allow viewers to see inside their head with just a canvas and charcoal or paint. A potter transforms the dirt of the Earth itself into whatever shape they please. Artists have the ability to plant emotions straight into an audience's heads without ever revealing who they are or their magician’s secrets. The best fantasy stories, in my opinion, are the ones where characters face trials over and over again. A captivating novel features a struggle that a reader desperately needs to see resolved. Still, characters can’t suffer without trying to overcome it. They have to constantly reach for the next win, as an audience will only continue reading if there’s a chance their hopes will come true. I try to resemble the characters I create in this way; I remind myself that if I give up on my goals, nothing will change. As a queer and disabled artist, it sometimes feels like the entire world, including my own body, is against my success. I’ve had to fight for the accommodations I need to function in academic settings, oftentimes while feeling that the very people I have to work with would rather see me hide my true self than accept that I can thrive in my individuality. Those emotions are already difficult to come to terms with, and my desire to make the world more kind, welcoming, and accommodating sometimes seems impossible. Through my doubts, I turn to the power of pens and paintbrushes. I believe that art is able to change the world. It forces an audience to empathize with others, reconsider their worldviews, and feel seen in a world that can be so isolating. I incorporate my experiences and struggles into my creative works, in part for catharsis, but also in order to communicate my experiences to others. I want others to not only consider my perspectives, but also think about what positive changes they want to make in their communities. I do this through both written works and visual art in genres of fantasy and magical realism, sometimes with horror elements. I love that I can use the otherworldly to convey something raw and real that reflects back on the real world. In my experience, using metaphor allows me to get at the true heart of my sentiment more effectively than saying my thoughts plainly. My primary career goal is to be an author, as I want to make as much magic as I can. I have hope that magic can make a difference in the world.
    Alicea Sperstad Rural Writer Scholarship
    Art is magic to me. An artist, no matter their medium, has the ability to create something brilliant out of seemingly nothing at all. All a writer needs is pen and paper to bewitch an audience into caring for a world and people most say never existed at all. A visual artist can conjure up visions that allow viewers to see inside their head with just a canvas and charcoal or paint. A potter transforms the dirt of the Earth itself into whatever shape they please. Artists have the ability to plant emotions straight into an audience's heads without ever revealing who they are or their magician’s secrets. As a child, I was always fascinated with the fantastical. I never understood why characters in books and movies would always choose to return home from the magical worlds they were transported to. I think that’s part of why I’ve always been drawn to creativity. At age three, I was dictating stories to my mother to write down, because I didn’t yet know how to read. Writing is so ingrained in my being that I don’t exactly remember when I decided to dedicate my life to it, but it was likely in fourth grade, when I started writing my first book and finally put my imaginative brain on the page to share. My skills have had plenty of time to develop and expand, and now I also create short stories, poetry, and visual art, along with other avenues I’m continuously exploring. I’m excited for my interests to grow even further during my education. I gravitate towards writing fantasy and magical realism, sometimes with horror elements. I use my art as a vehicle to express my emotions, fears, experiences, and perspectives; I love that I can use the otherworldly to convey something raw and real. In my experience, using metaphor allows me to get at the true heart of my sentiment more effectively than saying my thoughts plainly, and I’ve even discovered hidden aspects of myself through my creative processes. I frequently discuss themes surrounding morality, death and grief, divinity and mortality, mental health and disability, freedom and self-control, the implications of non-humanity, and the impact of hardship and trauma. I’m regularly inspired by nature, ancient mythologies, and other artists’ works. I believe that there’s a lot to be gathered from not only the masters, but also my peers. I’ve been influenced by my friends at writing workshops in a similar way to how Frida Kahlo’s art gives me a creative spark. My primary career goal is to become an author. I’m currently working on a novel, as well as various short stories. My goal is to have my shorter works published in literary magazines in the near future so that potential publishers for my novel will have a reference for my writing style. Since I know I can’t expect my writing to sustain me financially, I’ve considered a few additional career paths, such as being a librarian, a writing professor, or an editor for a publishing house. I also want to incorporate my passion for visual arts into my professional future somehow, and I’ve thought about being an illustrator or book cover designer. Regardless, I want to be as creative as I can in my career. To me, leading a fulfilling life means making as much magic as I can.
    Heather Rylie Memorial Scholarship
    Art is magic to me. An artist, no matter their medium, has the ability to create something brilliant out of seemingly nothing at all. All a writer needs is pen and paper to bewitch an audience into caring for a world and people most say never existed at all. A visual artist can conjure up visions that allow viewers to see inside their head with just a canvas and charcoal or paint. A potter transforms the dirt of the Earth itself into whatever shape they please. Artists have the ability to plant emotions straight into an audience's heads without ever revealing who they are or their magician’s secrets. As a child, I was always fascinated with the fantastical. I never understood why characters in books and movies would always choose to return home from the magical worlds they were transported to. I think that’s part of why I’ve always been drawn to creativity. At age three, I was dictating stories to my mother to write down, because I didn’t yet know how to read. By the time I was four, I had a distinctive art style when I drew people. Writing is so ingrained in my being that I don’t exactly remember when I decided to dedicate my life to it, but it was likely in fourth grade, when I started writing my first book and finally put my imaginative brain on the page to share. I always enjoyed making art, but it was in eighth grade when I began to take my drawings more seriously, intentionally trying to practice and improve my technique and accuracy. My skills have had plenty of time to develop and expand, and now I also create short stories, poetry, oil paintings, ink drawings, clay works, and fiber pieces, along with other avenues I’m continuously exploring. I’m excited for my interests to grow even further during my education. I gravitate towards writing fantasy and magical realism, sometimes with horror elements, and I often feature imagery from these genres in my visual works. I use my art as a vehicle to express my emotions, fears, experiences, and perspectives; I love that I can use the otherworldly to convey something raw and real. In my experience, using metaphor allows me to get at the true heart of my sentiment more effectively than saying my thoughts plainly, and I’ve even discovered hidden aspects of myself through my creative processes. I frequently discuss themes surrounding morality, death and grief, divinity and mortality, mental health and disability, freedom and self-control, the implications of non-humanity, and the impact of hardship and trauma. I’m regularly inspired by nature, ancient mythologies, and other artists’ works. I believe that there’s a lot to be gathered from not only the masters, but also my peers. I’ve been influenced by my friends at writing workshops in a similar way to how Frida Kahlo’s art gives me a creative spark. My primary career goal is to become an author. I also want to incorporate my passion for visual arts into my professional future somehow, and I’ve thought about being an illustrator or book cover designer. Regardless, I’m hoping to continue creating and potentially start selling non-book related art along with my other life paths. To me, leading a fulfilling life means making as much magic as I can.
    GRAFFITI ARTS SCHOLARSHIP
    I have been interested both in the visual arts and creative writing for my whole life. Through further developing my skills in these areas during high school, I have become excited to explore both interests in these areas, and I am planning to double major at Tennessee Technological University with a BS in Studio Arts and a BA in English with a creative writing concentration. My main career goal is to be an author, ideally getting the opportunity to use my visual art skills for illustrations, cover art, and other similar aspects of my published works. However, my love for visual art is so deep that I could never see a future for myself where I did not also explore it in other aspects of my life, both as a professional and a hobbyist. Recently, I have developed my skills in drawing and painting through my IB Art class, and I have just started to work with clay. I want to use my education to further my knowledge of these mediums, but I also want to expose myself to different forms of art that I might not have encountered otherwise, such as glass and jewelry. I chose a Studio Arts degree because, at my college, it does not require a strict list of completed courses, and I would be encouraged to explore different classes on different mediums. I am drawn to many forms of creative expression; I love to communicate my emotions and ideas about the world through my art and love to see how different mediums can alter and strengthen my intentions for a piece. With education, practice, and experimentation, I hope that I can create art that expresses myself in a way that is powerful and influential to an audience. Different works of art have been incredibly important to my development as a person, and it would mean the world to me to have the opportunity to have a similar impact on others. Additionally, as a new young adult, I want to be financially responsible for myself. Not only will self-responsibility help me gain independence, but I know that my parents could not afford to pay for my full tuition. My college has awarded me a Presidential merit scholarship, but it does not completely cover the cost of my classes, let alone other costs such as textbooks, supplies, meal plans, and transportation. Along with joining work study programs through college, outside scholarships will also be incredibly helpful to my education journey.
    Lieba’s Legacy Scholarship
    As a child, books were a major source of healthy development for me. Stories allowed me to do the impossible. I explored fantasy worlds, met dragons and fairies, and learned magical secrets. They cultivated my imagination, encouraging me to think for myself and express myself in creative ways. This creativity reinforced my tendency to inquire about the possibilities of the world around me, giving me a love for learning and knowledge. I was intelligent, but shy and sensitive. The childhood gifted programs I was placed in did not meet all of my academic needs and did not provide help for my struggles with anxiety and social interaction. I defaulted to fiction as a primary source for learning how to cope with my fears, as well as for subconscious intellectual development. Books taught me about the world in a way that no person had, allowing me to develop my own opinions about complicated issues in a child-friendly way. I found that stories almost begged me to read them, reaching out to me and confirming my feelings in a way that made me feel valued. Books were my friends and mentors when no one else was. My experience has taught me that literature has the ability to change the world. As my interests and skills started to develop, I began to consider myself a writer. Even while I was still in elementary school, I dreamed of stories to turn into books and put some early drafts of many first chapters down to paper. As I matured, I realized that creativity had a greater place in the world than just being a fun activity. I took inspiration for my stories from my own life, and I found that writing helped me to analyze my feelings about and reactions to conflicts, relieving some of my anxiety. I began to use themes of my works to share my values with others, giving it a greater purpose in a world I wanted to improve. I recognized how much books helped me as a child, deciding that I wanted to help others in a similar situation as me. I want to write books that foster a more empathetic world, and children are most in need of this kindness. Through writing for children, I can become a mentor for children who I would never have the opportunity to meet. With luck, my works will allow them to do the impossible.
    Carolyn Hawkins Memorial Scholarship
    I frequently seek experiences that allow me to creatively express myself in new ways. In academic contexts, I find classes that prioritize the memorization of facts above discussion and thinking incredibly frustrating. I need to explore a subject and come to my own conclusions about it in order to effectively learn and grow as a student. I need to embrace the subjectivity of a topic when learning, and I can only do that with some level of freedom to let my own opinions guide my experience in the course. My curiosity is a driving force in my academics when I am allowed to let it run free. I express myself using creative writing and visual art, and I treat both of these activities as an exploration of my thinking. Writing is an almost magical experience for me. I sometimes feel as if my characters have more autonomy than one might expect, and that they are the ones creating the story. In a similar way that an audience might, I write out of curiosity and an interest in my story; I also want to find out what will happen next. I use my visual art to explore and question my beliefs, communicating my opinions in unique ways. I am always seeking to use my art in new ways, experimenting with different styles and mediums so that I can expand my abilities and see what I can create. I am constantly inquisitive about my creative capabilities. I see the wonder in areas where others might not. I have a near-constant stream of ideas for projects I want to complete when I have free time, and I find myself researching niche interests on my own time because they captured my curiosity. These interests cover a diverse range of topics, including ancient Greek and Norse religion, old computers, and plants. I am fascinated with the world around me, and I find many subjects interesting and worthy of discovery. In these ways, I am an inquirer. I question both myself and the world around me in an effort to discover knowledge. This curiosity fuels my perspective as I move through my life, providing me with a means to analyze and understand the life I live. Being inquisitive allows me to find reasons to be happy in a stressful world. My creative endeavors, fueled by constant questioning, give me a sense of purpose. At my core, being an inquirer is an unshakable part of my identity.