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Caroline Leonard

September 17, 2014


Preliminary Reflection Paper
STA 446
After my boarding school experience, I knew that I would gain a
unique transition to college because I was already an independent,
confident individual. This perspective has allowed me to delve deeper
into my undergraduate study and consider the parallels to my
developing global viewpoint. As a communications major and a
religious studies minor, a lot of my daily studies relate directly to real
world application.
The most significant aspects of these studies are the writing
skills and reading materials that I have learned over the past two
years. For me, writing is one of the most important skills that an
individual can master; and for my future profession it is an invaluable
trait. As I continue on the path of public relations, I have also learned
that reading the news is a key feature of keeping up with the world and
the profession. This is now something that I cant go a day without
doing.
One distinctive connection between my religion classes and
communication classes is the real world experience that was added
into the course syllabus. For my Hinduism class, we traveled to a
temple in Cary to observe a sacred ceremony with the locals of the
town. For my media writing class, we acted as journalists on several
accounts and interviewed students around campus. Both of these
experiences forced me to step outside my comfort zone and look
beyond my own personal perspectives so I could learn from the
strangers I encountered. This enabled me to strengthen my
communication and listening skills in order to gain the material and
understanding of the assignment.
When I think about the foundations of this GST Capstone, I hope
to explore how music has influenced the media and the popular artists
of todays society. Looking into how history has created a foundation
for the future is something that several of my classes have examined.
Everything that we understand and know in the modern world was
created or influenced by something long ago, and I think that there is a
large connection between eighteenth century composers and modern
day musicians. Music is also a universal phenomenon that every
nation, ethnicity, and individual can relate to. There is no requirement
in order to understand, love, and enjoy the sound of a melody, and for
this music possesses a special power in society. As a primary lens
through which this course examines content, I am eager to learn the

effects of music in society both now, and back in the nineteenth


century.
Outside of my main studies, I am also interested in photography
and fashion. I have always had an imaginative mind and a love for
using that creativity whenever possible. This character trait is
something that drew me to the course, because Austria is a country
rich with culture and creativity. Music without a doubt is a part of the
arts and continues to be a way for people to express themselves. All of
these traits are interconnected because they allow individuals to create
their own path. Music is also something that I have not had to chance
to study in depth, although it has always been a part of my life. My
father has a passion for music and when I was little I would often wake
up to him playing the piano. I know that by the end of this course and
our trip in Austria I will have a stronger connection with music because
I will understand the influence it has had in society over the past 400
years.