The Writing Center celebrated yet another of its 20/20 events this past week: ReCyle, ReMix, ReClaim. The inspiration was found in this year’s One Book, One Community choice, a program co-sponsored by the City of East Lansing and MSU. The 2012 book is Katherine Boo’s Behind the Beautiful Forevers, a story that takes place in the slums of India.
In this novel, a series of families sort and sell trash as one way out of the slums. Similarly, The Writing Center’s event welcomed students of all backgrounds to come and repurpose items that had previously been thought to be trash—bottles, cardboard, containers, etc. It was an eye-opening exercise in shifting the perspective with which we view the world.
Students ranging in age from Freshmen to Graduate Students came to participate, sharing a bit about themselves and their unique backgrounds as they worked together to turn the trash into something beautiful. As they worked to build a small “city,” discussions about campus, life, and learning were had throughout the evening. It was an activity that created a community based on differences, and that celebrated our diversity. This is what The Writing Center and MSU are all about: creating connections between people and things that open our eyes, and make our world a better place.