I call this piece THRIVE because it truly expresses and symbolizes my identity and who I am, but also can connect to people in various ways. Thrive means to prosper, flourish, be healthy, succeed and grow; these are all things many of us aim towards in life. We learn about who we are and what we believe and have visions and goals for ourselves. Just like this tree, I am still growing, learning, and doing my best to prosper and succeed in life. This piece focuses on my beliefs, values, hobbies, life philosophy, interest, friends and family, and passions.
"Rose Bush and the Magnolia Tree": In this photograph we see a rose plant, which has been associated with love, but which also symbolizes honor, beauty, passion, faith, and friendship. The rose plant grows around the tree, which suggests the idea of protection. The roses are connected with the tree in the same way my family is connected to me. Plants grow together, and the family sticks together as well. Notice the thorns and the roots; they share the soil and the tree, just like family. My family is my love, life, light and support; they are my foundation. Just like the roots from the plant, they are connected with love and care; they natured the tree.
"Fate": In this photograph we see many Fortune Cookies hanging. These fortune cookies represent several things. First, food allows for growth. Each fortune cookie has a message for everyone. Just like each individual, each message in the fortune will be different. The cookies provide “food for thought”; they give each person inspiration and hope. This photograph also represents culture—one’s roots and one’s heritage—which reminds us to celebrate the beauty of diversity.
"Magnolia": The magnolia tree is a type of flower that grows on evergreen trees, which symbolizes nobility, perseverance, and love of nature! This tree can represent other first-generation students and myself, since we all grow mentally and physically, and still continue to grow. This tree is also a representation of persistence (def.: determined continuation with something; determination, stubbornness, drive and purpose). The sun allows for growth, while family, friends, loved ones, and mentors are the rays that give one life, strength, and support for further growth and development.
First-Gen Voices: Creative and Critical Narratives on the First-Generation College Experience: Vol. 1:
1, Article 25.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.lmu.edu/fgv/vol1/iss1/25