On Thursday Feb. 27, Students and faculty filled Jones Auditorium to hear author Wes Moore speak about his New York Times Bestseller, The Other Wes Moore. Moore was invited to TAMUK to speak to the students and watch the videos a freshman class created with the inspiration of his novel.
The Other Wes Moore has been the common read for TAMUK’s freshman class and is hoped to inspire students to steer themselves in the right direction.
Moore, a Baltimore native, is a military veteran, scholar, and now an inspiring author to students.
“I consider myself a public servant and a story teller,” said Moore. “I am a firm believer that statistics can add context but stories promote action.”
Moore was unsure on whether he should write the story but gained his inspiration from the main character of his novel, the “other” Wes.
“I was very reluctant of writing all of this down on paper for many reasons, but I was inspired by something Wes said,” Moore said. “He said, I’ve wasted every opportunity that I’ve ever had in life and if you can do something that can help people understand the consequences for their decisions and also help
them understand the neighborhoods that these decisions are made in then you should do it.”
The freshman at TAMUK are required to take an introduction class to learn the basics of a college experience. These classes chose to read Moore’s novel which inspired them to make a video project. Jenni Vinson, an instructor in the department of Language and Literature, helped the freshman of the UNIV Learning and Global Context class create two videos of different situations. They conveyed a female and male college student steering in the wrong direction and the consequences they endure.
“What inspired us to make the videos was the connection we had with the book,” said Alexandra Salivir, a freshman History major, and one of the group leaders in Vinson’s class. “Moore explains that you should make life as best as it can be even with bad surroundings.”
“It is so humbling, and I hoped and prayed that they would understand it is more than just about these two kids and what they did,” Moore said, thrilled and thankful to hear that the students were inspired by his novel. “The students here are just remarkable and they are taking their education seriously.”
When he spoke to the students and faculty he wanted them to ask themselves, ‘What are we going to do to make it matter that we are here in the first place? What is the larger point of being here at TAMUK?’
Moore plans on writing more in the near future. Specifically, something that he’s as proud of as he is The Other Wes Moore.
“There is a little bit of these kids in all of us. How we think of our role and responsibilities to other people who look up at us a role models is very important and that is what I want everyone to get out of it.”