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Tearing An Essay Apart, In a Good Way


Some courses are so terrific it seems as though everyone should take them, and “Truth and Justice, the American Way” with Doran Larson was one of those for Kyra Ganswith ’19. Larson is the Walcott-Bartlett Professor of Ethics and Christian Evidences. Ganswith is an intended psychology major who plans to minor in jurisprudence, law and justice studies and wants to go to law school.

She found the course readings, from The Scarlet Letter to James Baldwin’s Another Country, to be amazing.

“The reason why I think everyone should take the class is because it gives insights into how society thinks, and how the government takes care of justice issues,” she says. “It was a great class to also understand how minorities in America are treated under systematic oppression across time periods.” 

During class discussions, students and the professor connected what they’d read to current events, which is another reason Ganswith thinks the course was so meaningful. Another very good thing: She’s a much better writer after taking the course. Larson makes himself available to help, she says, “And he would just like tear your essay apart with you.”

In that course and others at Hamilton, Ganswith says she’s seen her written and oral communication skills shoot up. When she’s returned to her high school to offer advice about college or written to her high school guidance counselor or teachers, they’ve been impressed. “And I’ve only been here a year,” Ganswith says, “and I can only imagine where I’ll be my senior year.”

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