Kean students write to heroes

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By Nicole Brown | Published on Dec. 10, 2015

“Dear hero, you wear your uniform with so much pride, your bravery is known far and wide. e job you’re doing is worthwhile; you have made a lot of people proud. ank you,” wrote Geysel Davila, a freshman student at Kean University. is was one of several messages a group of Speech Communication as Critical Citizenship students wrote on postal cards to veterans expressing their gratitude.

The technology revolution exploded and for many a hand written letter is a thing of the past. But for this group of students, a hand written card adds an “indescribable personal touch” to the message.

“We get the opportunity to touch a group of people to remind them that all their efforts are not unnoticed,” said Juliet Miranda, a Health and Information Management student. “A hand written card is more heart felt. It shows compassion and gratitude.”

Students huddled together in small groups and neatly wrote thought- provoking messages and drew graphics that complemented the content of the cards. From images of the ag of the United States of America expressing patriotism, to the anksgiving turkey, the students spent time carefully decorating their cards. For others it was a nostalgic moment.

“I feel great to be a part of this project. e crayons and crafting materials in the baskets reminds me of Kindergarten,” said T’liyyah Johnson-Parris, a freshman student. “The whole school should do this.”

The idea to write postal cards to veterans surfaced when Allison Suarez, a double major in English writing and Criminal Justice, delivered her informative speech on letter writing. It was then that Donna lee Goldberg, adjunct professor of Communication, thought it would be a great idea for the students to participate in letter writing.

“The idea made sense so I told Dr. Sargent about it and he suggested that it would be great if the students write postal cards to veterans,” said Goldberg. “I reached out to the Veteran Student Services and they agreed.”

Goldberg said the project allowed the students to take a break from the technology and communicate with the people around them.

“Students are in class and they are checking their phones,” said Goldberberg. “They don’t talk to the person next to them, let alone even know the neighbor’s name.”

According to Goldberg, the Speech Communication as Critical Citizenship class embodies the students’ kind gesture to send card to veterans.

“This was a great opportunity for the students to do some community service within the framework of the course,” said Goldberg. “The students did a noble and kind act of citizenship by sending the thank you notes.”

About fifty cards were delivered in person the Monday after anksgiving to the US Department of Veteran A airs VA New Jersey Health Care System, and already Goldberg is planning how she can incorporate acts of citizenship for future courses.

“I try to be creative,” said Goldberg. “I look to change things up when I can. The students need variety and as do I.”

The spontaneous gesture came in a few weeks after Kean University celebrated Veterans Day.


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