2019 SCHOLARSHIP WINNER

Trinity Diehlee

The reason I am applying

The reason I am applying for this scholarship is so I can earn a doctorate in mechanical engineering and become an inspiration for young girls entering S.T.E.M fields, as well as an advocate for members of the Pagan and LGBT communities in pursuing careers in science. As someone who is part of all three groups and has either experienced and seen people face discrimination because of things that have nothing to do with their abilities in science, I want to make strides to change that by furthering my education and paving the way for the next generation of engineers.

What Being a Pagan Means to Me

What does it mean to be a Pagan? To me being Pagan means being the pinnacle of uniqueness, having a lifetime of learning and educating ahead of me, and an amazing community of people that will love and support me no matter what.

Being Pagan means being able to bring a different perspective to a conversation, whether it be something important like the political state of out country, or something as simple as where the group should go grab a bite to eat. When I was younger, I hated the fact that I was never allowed to talk about my religion and that it set me apart from my peers, but now that I’m older, I really appreciate the fact that the friends I have now love me despite being raised Pagan. Recognizing that made me realize that there was nothing wrong with the religion that I practiced, I just had to wait and find the right people who could look past the label of “witch” and get to know the real me.

It also means being more accepting of people despite their differences and getting to be part of a community where I can be completely myself and not have to worry about facing judgement. The friends I have made through the Pagan community have become the most amazing support network I could have ever imagined and now that I’m a young adult, I’m trying to pay that same support forward to the next generation of Pagans. When ever I think of the friends I’ve made within the community, I get overwhelmed with all of the loving energy that they have blessed me with and whenever I’m with them, I feel safe and loved. I get to meet so many different and interesting people and get to hear their stories, often walking away with a new perspective on life.

To me, being Pagan also means being an educator. I’m always so thrilled when people want to learn more about my religion after I come out of the broom closet, and I often end up learning more myself when someone asks a question that I don’t know the answer to and I have to find out more for the both of us. I love getting the opportunity to teach witches and muggles alike the histories of the holidays, what pointed hats and broomsticks are actually used for, and why the Thor movies aren’t entirely accurate. Despite being a hereditary Pagan, like all followers of the faith, I still have so much to learn about the divine world around me and what I can do to lend myself to it. Having the opportunity to attend Convocation every year is such a blessing because it allows me to learn about my faith from some of the best magic practitioners from around the world, and I get learn more about myself along the way.

I am truly blessed that I was raised in such an incredible world and I can’t imagine life without the Pagan community. To me, being Pagan means being unstoppable.

Hidden Figures: To Boldly Go

The passage I’ve selected is from the final chapter of the book, titled To Boldly Go, and reflects on the women’s work at NASA before and after the launch of the Apollo 11 and also discusses how the Space Program influenced 60’s pop culture which made great advances in the Civil Rights Movement.

The women of color working in Langley’s West Area knew that they were playing a large role in the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960’s, but it wasn’t until the second half of the decade that they saw how far their influence had reached. It also wasn’t until after the first season of Star Trek had aired that Nichelle Nichols understood how pivotal her role as Lieutenant Uhura was until Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. told her he was a fan. Through the use of strong tones and emotional appeal, Shetterly was able to create a very emotional, yet happy ending to her already powerful and incredible story.

The author’s use of emotional appeals is apparent in the first paragraph of the chapter where she describes women of all skin colors coming together to watch something they all worked to achieve together and describes how “the time they shared in each other’s company would forge lifelong friendships”(Shetterly 235). Later on in the passage, readers can also hear the emotion in Dr. King’s voice as he tells Nichols “ You can’t leave the show,” and why her role is important: “This is not a black role, this is not a female role… this is a unique role that brings to life what we are marching for: equality” (Shetterly 243). At the end of the passage, we get a deep insight into the mind of Katherine Johnson: she was afraid. She was afraid of the vast, endless, final frontier, and all the things that could go wrong up there, and yet she would have joined the astronauts up in space in a heartbeat, because in her mind “curiosity always bested fear” (Shetterly 244). Throughout the passage, the author carefully crafts there words to get the strongest reaction out of the reader and to do the intensity of the emotions felt by our subjects justice.

As the emotions felt by the characters in the book changes with each passage, so does the tone. The way that the author sets the tone is very similar to how the create the emotional appeals in the book. They makes it seem that the entire country is looking to the skies for a better future when she tells of the version of Earth that Star Trek is set in, “ its history of poverty and war now in the past” (Shetterly 242). She makes it feel as though the entire country is holding their breath “commanded by the sounds and grainy images issuing forth from the small black-and-white television” (Shetterly 235). The author shifts the tone in this book quite frequently within the chapters because she is writing about someone’s life and understands that the “tone” of the events in people’s lives is ever changing.

Through careful word choice and going into great detail, Margot Lee Shetterly was able to create a very gripping, emotional, and inspiring piece of writing. The strong emotional appeals and tone shifts made the reader feel like they were standing there, witnessing these events.

ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS IN JANUARY 2020

Michigan Pagan College Scholarship Fund is offering a $500.00 Scholarship for a rising high school senior, undergraduate, or graduate. All applicants must LIVE in Michigan. Applicants must be 17 years of age or older, have a current GPA of 2.5 or higher, be Pagan, and currently accepted in a full time course of study in any accredited two or four-year college or university. Applicants must provide their most recent school transcript to establish state of residency, and GPA requirements. In addition they must also state the reason for applying for this scholarship in 250 words or less and submit a 500 word essay about what being a Pagan means to them. There is a third essay a 3 Page typed, double-spaced, MLA formatted pages on the scholarly topic of your choosing. As always good luck to all those who apply. Michigan Pagan College Scholarship Fund

Sponsors


Level 1
  • Magical Education Council
  • Coventry Creations
  • Candle Wick Shoppe
  • Michigan Witches’ Ball

  • Level 2
  • Artes and Craft
  • Sanctuary of the Winds

  • Level 3
  • Magical Mother Moon
  • Wolf Run Wildlife and Spiritual Sanctuary

  • Thank you to all our sponsors who make the MPCS Fund possible.

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