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Jodi Dearth

June 25, 2018

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This I believe

Ada HS College Prep English students respond in essays

First of a two-part series.

Ada High School College Preparatory English students, in a class taught by Melody Veltri, were challenged with the question "What do you believe?" This story focuses on that project.

Question: What do you believe?

Mrs. Veltri posed this to her students. 

“I asked students to write a statement of personal beliefs,” she said. “This is challenging. It requires such intimacy that no one else can do it for you.”

Offering several suggestions for the assignment, these included telling a story, being brief, naming your belief, being positive and being personal.

This assignment is based on “This I Believe,” an international project that engages people in writing, sharing and discussing the core values and beliefs that guide their daily lives.

The following thoughts are from student essays.

From Brayden Dye:
It’s what you accomplish with your life. When I live, I want to shine. I want to prove that I exist. If I want to do something really important …. that is to say, it would mean that I had lived a life worth living. And that, I believe.

From Aliyah Hasan:
Being in a bad situation doesn’t mean it’s the end of the world. The key to getting through a rough patch isn’t forcing your way out. It’s finding good in the bad …. It will be hard and I guarantee you’ll struggle with it at first, but in the end all you have to do is be thankful. This I believe.

From Shaheed Khan:
I believe confidence is the key to success …. Moving from my home country to the U.S. was not really a sweet experience …. Things were really difficult for me. I did not have decent grades in school, and I was not very good at sport or any other extra curricular activity. My life was in a total downfall …. but it did not bring me down. I had confidence in myself. I never lost faith in myself. I always stayed positive about myself. Confidence helped me to motivate myself. I set a goal and went after it …. As long as I do not let myself down, nobody can drag me down. This I believe.

From Eda Tanriverdi:
I believe in peace in the future, between nations and people …. I never forget the time when I almost lost my grandmother in a September 2016 terrorist attack in Istanbul …. and my friends walking down the street to see blood and flesh on the sidewalks everyday and when they couldn’t even open a window because of the people with guns shooting everything and everyone on the streets and how I was scared …. When I remember these I also remember the power of peace and love and I get motivated. I get motivated to leave a better place for the next generations now that we have seen some of the worst years in the last decade. The word of “peace” is greater and stronger than anything. This I believe.

From Rielyn Castle:
I believe in the power of words. When I was small, my grandfather used to tell met that I could be anything I wanted to be. He used to tell me that as long as I did well in school and finished that I would one day do great things…. In six years I will graduate college as a Doctor of Pharmacy as long as I don’t change my major. And how did I get here? Because of someone’s words. Someone told me that I could do or be anything, so I did and I’m glad that I had someone to share those words with me …. because one day I hope to inspire someone with those same words.

From Kaitlyn Long:
I believe in love. Love has power in every aspect of life …. Love has impacted the different aspects of my life ….  I have a love for school because it has influenced my love for agriculture, which has inspired me to become a veterinary technician. I have a love of serving others through community service projects because it feels good to do so. I have a love for discovering my purpose because I get to connect with God.

From Hunter Purdy:
I believe in working hard to get where you want to go in life. I was taught from an early age that if you want to go far in life, then you need to work hard for what you want. …. Much of my childhood was spent helping by Dad and Grandpa do yard work, fix tractors, perform maintenance on their vehicles, and work for them with their construction business …. My grandpa once told me that you will never appreciate what you have if it’s always handed to you. I started to ponder that phrase. As I continued to work with my Dad and Grandpa that phrase finally clicked …. I will be more grateful and appreciative of the things that I earn throughout my life.

From Mara Guyton:
I believe in community. A community is love, unity and family. Growing up in Hardin County, I have witnessed first-hand the power of unity. I believe this country and world will not see peace until we accept the idea of solidarity and become a community .… I marched on Jan. 21 all over Washington, D.C., with millions of men and women who felt the same way I did ….  I witnessed millions of people come together to support each other to get through a difficult time …. When we come together to support each other as a community, we are one day closer to peace. This I believe.