|JCU Home Page >    About JCU    |    Mission    |    Academics     |     Campus Life    |    Athletics    |    Alumni    |

In his First Year Seminar section this fall, Professor Paul Lauritzen assigned a paper modeled on the "This I Believe" series made popular by National Public Radio.  The idea behind the series is to get ordinary citizens "writing, sharing, and discussing the core values and beliefs that guide their daily lives."  Lauritzen asked his students to write 350-500 word essays on what they believe.  He liked the essays so much that he recorded the students reading their essays.  You can read and listen to some of the essays by clicking on the links to the right.

Ariel Johnson writes about the importance of having a strong role model in her life. For her, that role model was her “mama.” Whatever else she will do with her life, Ariel plans on being the same kind of mama.

Adam Miller has found that being at college and far from home, has made him appreciate his relationship with his little brother. He believes in the importance of a sibling relationship.

    Raymond Chahoud has found that music brings him a sense of comfort when he is under stress. When his father left for Iraq, Ray played his guitar and listened to music to remind him of his father.

Oksana Kozlovskaya has found that we take smiles too much for granted. When her brother was seriously ill, the absence of his wonderful smile symbolized the pain her family felt.

Melissa Zapata has learned from her parents and grandparents the importance of following one's own course in life. She believes in defining who she is for herself.

    Justin Heegan believes that laughter is the perfect antidote to the mean-spiritedness that we all confront in others from time to time. For Justin, three good laughs a day keeps the doctor away.

    Eve Marie Blasinsky believes that we should live our lives as marvelous journeys. A journey should not be planned or defined for us by others; we must define it ourselves.

Jacob Dunton writes about the beauty and power of storms. We studied traditional Chinese medicine in First Year Seminar and Jacob reflects on the yin and yang found in nature.

Joshua Rentz believes in the centrality of family. Going home for him is not just a trip to do laundry; it is returning to a place of endless support.


Maria Perossa believes in love and feels fortunate to have found it in her life.

Kara Krawiec believes in a can-do attitude. She learned this from a fifth-grade teacher, Mrs. Duffin who cultivated this in her students. If Mrs. Duffin is out there, we hope she reads this.

Michelle Gittinger believes in moms, dads, and sisters. In her essay, she celebrates her family as the cornerstone of her life.

Patrick Latcham believes in working hard and playing hard. He finds the balance between the two conducive to college life.

Elizabeth LaPerch laughs a lot and laughter is an important part of her life. She reflects on why that is the case and how she finds humor in the most unlikely of places.

David Hearty believes in the power of listening. He discusses how his relationship with his father often depends on whether they are really listening to one another.

Christine Liebrecht believes in not taking herself too seriously. As she says, she believes in microwaving peanut butter and chocolate chips on graham crackers after midnight.
Rachael Grimm believes in the parent-child bond, but the bond between mothers and daughters is different than that between fathers and daughters.  She embraces both with enthusiasm. 

Lindsay Ashba believes that smiles are contagious and can break up the repetitive routines of our daily lives.

To comment on any
of these essays,
click here.

John Carroll University, University Heights, OH 44118  |  (216) 397-4980  |