When I first began this blog project, I didn’t understand what the big deal about blogging was. I expected the assignment to be overly difficult, especially for something that I likely would never use after the project was done. As the weeks progressed, I quickly understood why the existence of blogging was so important. I have discovered that the medium provides valuable opportunities to present research and communicate information in an interesting way, while maintaining a natural, casual style of writing.
As somebody who has always under-appreciated the humanities, this blog project, along with the two first-year English classes I am taking this semester, have contributed to my realization of how vital the humanities are and the role they play in our daily lives. Communication, for instance, is rooted in the humanities. Blogging connects people through reading and writing, informing and educating. Blogging is communicating, and communication is what connects humans with one another. I was fortunate to have another fellow blogger from Texas, who I am unaffiliated with, comment on one of my blog posts in appreciation of one of the posts that I had written. That individual was so passionate about housing-first, and it was very uplifting to have a stranger appreciate my post when I wasn’t sure I even appreciated what I had written. That is how I began to find a similar appreciation of the concept of blogging and how effective blogs are at communicating.
In addition, this blog assignment has opened my mind to a topic I had previously not given much critical thought. I grew up in a Methodist church and have been exposed to outreach and service my entire life, but after thoroughly researching and writing about housing first, I now have a more comprehensive understanding of homelessness in general and the role substance abuse and mental illness play in chronic homelessness. After completing this assignment, I now understand that homelessness is a much more complex issue than I previously thought, and that housing first is the most effective and most cost-efficient approach in ending homelessness.
Over the course of this project, I believe that I have grown as a writer, a researcher, a communicator, and a student in general. With the help of review by my peers, my writing skills have noticeably flourished. I have grown to appreciate research more than I previously had, and have actually found interest in it. I have been educated on how to efficiently communicate through blogging, which I previously had not known how to do, and quite frankly, had not been interested in doing. With the blogging freedom I was provided, I saw a boost in creativity and productivity as well, ultimately providing me with the ability to become more passionate about the topic in which I was writing. After researching housing first and its relativity to homelessness, substance abuse, and mental illness, and after considering the cost-efficiency and effectiveness of the approach, I am now an advocate for housing first. The project in general has also made me a better student in general, for I truly believe that learning to appreciate the work being done as a student is a step in the right direction to becoming a better student.