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Everyone wishes they could find a way to make a difference in other people’s lives. Whether that be through a newspaper article, a heart-to-heart with a friend or even a smile from a stranger, everyone wants to make a difference. Shannon Mitchem impacts the lives of others through public speaking.
Mitchem, sophomore from Evansville, Ind., has adapted her own way of getting through to people. She came up with the idea for “Love, Faith and Responsibility (LFR)” as a way to make an impact on people’s lives and will speak on her idea Tuesday, Nov. 5, in the Carr Health Building under the supervision of Patricia Long, professor in the College of Humanities and Fine Arts.
“(The speech) is made up of three lessons,” Mitchem said. “I’m teaching not just on relationship love or love in God; it’s more about the love of yourself, family or friends. All aspects of love. Same with faith and same with responsibility.”
By speaking about the ideas, Mitchem wants listeners to learn about themselves and others.
“Everyone needs to help themselves before they can help anyone else,” she said. “That’s what I have done for the past few years, and that is how I came up with my three concepts.”
Mitchem said she is normally very shy and quiet but whenever it comes to public speaking she has always been very comfortable.
“When I was in high school I went through a lot, in a nutshell, like anyone else,” she said. “I just felt the need to help people and I felt like the best way to do that and reach the most people was through public speaking.”
Her goal for her idea will continue to grow the more she speaks on it. She hopes that by continuing to speak on school campuses or with other organizations, it will provide her with leadership opportunities. Eventually, she believes her concepts can grow into their own organization and somehow create scholarship opportunities to other students interested in public speaking and be able to influence other people the way she was influenced.
Jeff Bethke is someone Mitchem considers one of her biggest influences. He writes poetry and turns it into rap and then posts it on YouTube. He raps about his past and things he has gone through.
She said both of her parents have been a big support in her public speaking, but her dad has had the biggest impact on her.
“If I had to really narrow it down, I would say my biggest support has been my dad,” Michem said. “He has always told me to stay strong and stay in your faith. I’ve learned a lot from him and he has always inspired me to just keep going.”
In her concepts, Mitchem wants to be able to show listeners they are never alone. Whatever that person has gone through, there is someone else who has gone through it, too, and there is a way to get past whatever it is.
Story by Breanna Sill, Staff Writer