For an assignment coined The Listening Project, our New Media Writing class at Emory University was paired with a class at SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry. Each of us was assigned a partner from the opposite school, tasked with communicating with them and sharing a bit about ourselves. Beyond that, we were pretty well left alone to decide what to make of the assignment. I knew we needed to write something about our partner, and that the class perspectives could factor in to our discussions. With our class studying New Media practices and theirs focusing more on environmental and sustainability issues, we had the opportunity to share a bit of what we have learned and get an outside perspective on the topics we had been discussing in the semester thus far.
I soon found out that I was partners with Trevor Cornish, an Environmental Resources Engineering major from Buffalo, New York. As an English and Marketing double major from Wichita, Kansas, I knew we must have a lot in common. But jokes aside, I was excited to speak with Trevor. I had no idea where to go with the project or what I would ultimately write about, but it seemed like it could be a great break from business school group projects.
We first communicated through email and eventually talked over Skype, simply sharing about what we care about and giving each other a bit of a background into our lives, upbringings, and goals. From a New Media perspective, it was interesting to experience how much you could learn about another person simply over email. Much like a pen pal, Trevor was someone I had never met, but a person whom I slowly understood more and more. Online communication offers immense opportunities to communicate with complete strangers, and unlike a pen pal, Trevor and I could exchange thought much more quickly and even speak face to face as we did over Skype. I wrote a bit about what I learned from Trevor and tried to frame it in terms of his own class’ discussions. Check it out here to get a better idea of what I learned from Trevor.