5 Most Influential Women in World History

There are many women in the world throughout history that have had a big impact on our world today. Many women qualified to make this list and it was difficult to narrow it down. Just as a side note, this is my opinion of the top five, and everyone is entitled to their own opinion. All information and its rights collected for this post go to their respected owners and companies. Here are the 5 most influential women in world history.

Susan B. Anthony (1820-1906)

 

Susan B. Anthony was born on February 15, 1820 in Adams, Massachusetts and was raised in a family of Quakers and abolitionists. She spent time working as a teacher and this was when she became inspired to fight for equal pay of women, because women teachers were being paid significantly less than men teachers at the time. After retiring from teaching, she moved to Rochester, New York and dedicated her time to campaigning on political issues like the temperance movement and anti-slavery movement. She even began writing The Revolution which campaigned for women’s rights as well as civil rights. Anthony spoke at many women’s rights and activists conventions which allowed for her to become a more dedicated, active, and confident leader for women’s suffrage. In 1869, alongside Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Anthony founded the National Women Suffrage Association which was dedicated to the fight for women’s votes. After the 14th Amendment, which states that all citizens of the United States have equal rights, was passed, Anthony argued that she was able to vote now, but this was not the case and she was arrested. She was given an unfair trial and fined $100, however Anthony defended herself, refusing to pay the fine, and walked away victorious. This strong women’s right activist died in 1906 and women were given the right to vote, fourteen years after her death.

Susan B. Anthony is the most influential women in history because she was one of the major voices in the fight for women’s rights and gaining the women vote. She was vocal through her writing in The Revolution, the many speeches she shared, and the defense of herself in court. Regardless of what the government and others thought of her and her beliefs, Anthony fought for what was right. She campaigned to give women the chance to learn about self-confidence and self-reliance. On top of that, she wrote the “Susan B. Anthony Amendment” which eventually became the 19th Amendment, giving women the right to vote. Without Susan B. Anthony, the fight for women’s rights as well as civil rights could have been much more difficult and stretched out. She helped give women a strong voice and the confidence to stand up for themselves in society.

Malala Yousafzai (1997-present)

Malala Yousafzai was born on July 12, 1997 in the Swat District of northwestern Pakistan. Her father ran a school in Swat, had a passion for learning, and had always been an advocate for education. Growing up, Malala shared this passion for learning with her father, and wrote her first blog entry for BBC when she was just eleven. Despite the death threats, Malala and her father continued to write and speak out for the right to an education. In 2011, she received the first ever National Youth Peace Prize in Pakistan. Her rising popularity and recognition irritated Taliban leaders, who set out to kill her. On October 9, 2012, the Taliban attacked Malala’s school bus, on the way home from school. Malala was shot, leaving her in critical condition. Two of her friends were also injured in the attack. Malala survived the attack and became a global advocate for girls receiving a formal education. Malala and her father founded the Malala Fund in 2013 to bring about awareness to girls’ education and empower them to raise their voices, unlock their potential, and demand change. For her efforts and dedication to empowering girls, Malala Yousafzai, received the Nobel Peace Prize on December 10, 2014 and she donated the prize money to financing the building of a secondary school for girls in Pakistan. She continues to fight for girls and their right to an education.

Malala Yousafzai is the second most influential woman in the world because of her dedication and courage to fight for the right to an education for girls in Pakistan. Despite the threats and her almost-death, Malala has worked hard, writing and speaking about giving girls a formal, high-quality education. She is a humble, intelligent, resilient, and selfless woman who has been willing to sacrifice her time and donate the money she has been given to better the education and lives of girls.

Eleanor Roosevelt (1884-1962)

Anna Eleanor Roosevelt was born on October 11, 1884 and was the niece of Theodore Roosevelt. Her parents passed away when she was young, and so she was raised by her maternal grandmother. In 1905, Eleanor married Franklin D. Roosevelt, her distant cousin. Eleanor became active in the American Red Cross during WWI. When FDR became the president in 1933, Eleanor became the first lady, and she reinvented the position and how people looked at it. She showed the world that the first lady had an important place in American politics, as she spoke out for human rights, children’s, and women’s rights. She also was vocal against racial discrimination, wanted to help America’s poor people, and travelled abroad to comfort and support American troops during WWII. After FDR’s death in 1945, Eleanor was appointed as a delegate of the United Nations General Assembly and also as a chair member of the U.N.’s Human Rights Commission where she helped write the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. President Kennedy appointed Eleanor to the National Advisory Committee of the Peace Corps and to the chair of the President’s Commission on the Status of Women. After a long life, filled with countless hours of service to her country, Eleanor Roosevelt died on November 7, 1962.

Eleanor Roosevelt is the third most influential women of all time because she transformed the position of the first lady. First ladies before Eleanor had stayed in the background and handled more domestic matters, however, Eleanor reinvented it by getting involved in speaking for rights and equality of all people. She wanted to use her position to support Americans regardless of who they were or where they were. First ladies after her were inspired to do similar things and stand out next to their husband. Eleanor served on many important commissions and assemblies that had a huge impact on the United States and the rest of the world. She helped write the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and give equal rights and protection to people all over the world. Her gritty personality and character helped her accomplish the many goals she had planned for herself and the world. This is what makes her the third most influential woman in the world.

Catherine the Great (1729-1796)

Catherine was born in Stettin, Prussia on May 2, 1729 with the birth name Sophie Friederike Auguste. In 1744, she travelled to Russia with her mother to meet the Russian empress, Elizabeth and her son Grand Duke Peter. A year later, she married the grand duke, becoming Russian royalty. She then converted to the Russian Orthodox church and changed her name to Catherine, despite the objections of her Lutheran father. Peter, Catherine’s husband was childish and acted immature towards becoming ruler of Russia some day. After the death of Empress Elizabeth in 1761, Peter III and Catherine assumed the throne. Peter was abusive and cruel towards the young Russian empress and mistreated others of the Russian noble class. Alongside a secret lover whom was a lieutenant in Russia, Catherine was able to unseat her husband and take the throne. During her reign, Catherine withdrew soldiers from Denmark who had been sent by Peter, strove to outlaw capital punishment and torture, promoted equality among all people, documented how the legal system should run, expanded Russia’s territory, promoted education and the arts, and fought to fix the serfs’ situation. After several decades of absolute rule, Catherine was believed to have suffered a stroke and died on November 17, 1796.

Catherine the Great is the fourth most influential woman of all time because of the many accomplishments and growth of Russia during her rule. She spoke out against capital punishment and torture, doing whatever she could to outlaw it. In the Nakaz, Catherine explained how the government would run. This allowed for the Legislative Commission to be founded and for the first time in Russian history, people from all over the empire could voice their opinions and thoughts on the issues and needs of Russia. The Nakaz didn’t immediately influence anything in Russia but it was praised for its ideas. By promoting education and art, Catherine was able to create a boarding school for girls and free schooling throughout many towns in Russia. The building of ballet theaters and opera houses gave people the opportunity to be entertained and immersed in music and art. This created a more educated, well-rounded, and creative Russian population.

Hatshepsut (1508 BCE-1458 BCE)

Hatshepsut was born in 1508 as an only child King Thutmose I and Queen Ahmose and was expected to become a queen of Egypt. She was married to her half-brother, Thutmose II at the age of 12 after the death of her father and assumed the role of wife and queen of Egypt. Thutmose II died after a fifteen year rule, and since her son, Thutmose III was just an infant, Hatshepsut served as her son’s regent and took the role of pharaoh in Egypt. To assert her authority, Hatshepsut dressed as a pharaoh would and this included wearing a fake beard. Under her rule, Egypt prospered as Hatshepsut dedicated her time and energy to economic prosperity as well as building and restoring monuments. She had a successful trading expedition to Punt which brought back ivory, gold, and myrrh trees and was immortalized on a temple built during her rule. The female pharaoh died in 1458 and her son, Thutmose III became pharaoh of Egypt, erasing all traces of his mother’s rule in Egypt.

Hatshepsut is considered the fifth most influential woman in history because of her hard work to improve Egypt’s economy and improve the monuments throughout Egypt and Nubia. She wanted many temples and other buildings to be built and that did happen during her rule. She differed from others Egyptian rulers in her dynasty, in that she focused more on the economy and building of monuments than expanding the land of Egypt, and that is why the civilization was able to thrive during her reign. In addition to that, Hatshepsut had been one of the very few women to become pharaoh in Egypt and maintain that position with full power.

If you would like more information on the ladies above, here are a few websites to read from:

http://www.history.com/topics/ancient-history/hatshepsut

http://www.biography.com/people/hatshepsut-9331094#reign

https://www.malala.org/malalas-story

https://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/peace/laureates/2014/yousafzai-bio.html

http://www.biographyonline.net/women/susan-b-anthony.html

http://susanbanthonyhouse.org/her-story/biography.php

http://www.biographyonline.net/politicians/american/eleanor-roosevelt.html

http://www.biography.com/people/eleanor-roosevelt-9463366#synopsis

http://www.biography.com/people/catherine-ii-9241622#education-and-the-arts

http://www.biographyonline.net/royalty/catherine-the-great.html

 

Ideas for Summer Plans

Summer break is coming up quickly, now that most students only have finals week left in school! Some plan to sign up for camps in sports or other activities they enjoy, some plan to travel, some plan to try new things, and others may have plans to just stay at home and relax. If you’re someone that hasn’t planned something or isn’t sure what to do, here are a few ideas for summer plans.

Start a blog! Blog writing can be a lot of work but it is also a lot of fun. Writing a blog allows you to share your opinions, stories, and ideas. I haven’t set a theme to what I write about but there are many other blog writers that write only about travel or food. You get to choose what you write about and have fun with it. The possibilities are endless.

Plant a garden. Every summer, my family plants a garden and the outcome has always been delicious! We plant cucumbers, tomatoes, zucchini, squash, string beans, mint, basil, and several others foods. Gardens are a lot of work to maintain with preparing the area, watering, weeding, and such, but it is always worth it. Recently, I started weeding in our garden for the first time, and I actually found it to be super entertaining.

Not my garden, in case you were wondering.

Spend time outside. Whether it’s playing tennis, volleyball, hanging out at the pool, or going for a hike, summer is the perfect time to be out in the sun. Just make sure to wear sunscreen, a hat, and maybe sunglasses to protect yourself from getting sunburnt.

Travel around your state, out-of-state. or out of country. Make sure to plan a route, place to stay, and ideas for what you will be doing. Regardless of where you are travelling to, make sure to check on the weather frequently to see if you’ll have to plan a detour or change a flight. It’s better to be over-prepared, than not know what will be happening on your trip, so do whatever you can to be as prepared as possible. Safe traveling!

Find a job. Many teens look for a job over the summer and this is smart because they will be able to make some money and do whatever they want to do with it. On top of that, finding a job allows you to find a way to make a contribution to your community.

Visit family. Spending time with family is important and having time off from work or school in the summer is the perfect time to do that. Find new things to try with your family and enjoy your time together.

Good luck to those of you who have finals this upcoming week! These were just a few ideas with what you could do with your summer and there’s plenty more. Get creative, stay safe, and have fun this summer!

Rising to Fulfillment

For the final project in my advanced language arts class this year, we had to create a new model for a person to reach self-actualization.  We had to argue why it was better than Maslow’s hierarchy of needs and explain the new steps of the model. The model my group created shows how a person must reach fulfillment as opposed to self-actualization. This post is going to be a long one, so be prepared to do a lot of reading! Enjoy!

 
After untying the ropes and releasing the sandbags, the beautiful and bright hot air balloon was released from the ground. Slowly and gracefully, the hot air balloon travelled farther and farther from the surface of the earth. As it reached into the clouds, its passengers could see the land below clearer than ever before. The journey to becoming a fulfilled person is like a hot air balloon in that the more needs a person satisfies, the clearer everything appears to them and the closer they are to becoming fulfilled. If someone allowed too much heat to fill the hot air balloon, it might pop or tear causing the passengers to come crashing to the ground. If a person is full of hot air or has a big ego, they may fail to meet their needs and never reach fulfillment. A person must satisfy their basic needs, communication, self-confidence, love, sense of accomplishment alongside benevolence, and be self-motivated to become fulfilled.
Maslow’s hierarchy of needs has become irrelevant to the people of today because it was created so many years ago. Times have changed and so have the needs of the people. Maslow’s hierarchy also lacks communication, self-motivation, and self-confidence in its steps to becoming self-actualized. These three needs are crucial to a person’s understanding of themselves and the world around them. They are also needed in order for a person to reach fulfillment. Unlike Maslow’s model which appears to have a clear end, this hot air balloon model shows that a person can become fulfilled, however, their journey is never complete and they are always working to accomplish new things and discover even more about life. Similar to Maslow’s model, a person must first satisfy their basic needs to start their journey.

 
Whether it be shelter, food, clothing, or water these are basic needs that a person must satisfy in order for them to begin their journey to fulfillment. These basic needs are what help keep a person alive. Some people, like Shin Dong-hyuk, who had escaped from the internment camps in North Korea was deprived of his need for food (Harden 76) as well as a comfortable, spacious place to call home (Harden 15). In Camp 14, he was unable to become a fulfilled person because his basic needs were limited. A person can get by with enough food to keep them alive, enough water to keep them hydrated, and a small area to use as shelter but it may be difficult to survive. Even if a person is at a low on their basic needs, they still have the opportunity to become fulfilled. In order for a person to continue on their path to fulfillment, they must be able to communicate with others and have support systems present in their lives.

 
Communication is crucial to a person’s growth and ability to become fulfilled. It provides a person with comfort and people to talk with. It gives people a support system too. Social interactions make people happy and give them something to look forward to in their days. According to the documentary titled Happy, “studies show that the happiest people have strong and close relationships with their friends and family”. Communication allows for support systems between others to be built. People rely on others to give them criticism, encouragement, advice, and guidance therefore communication is critical to a person’s journey to becoming fulfilled. In life, the job of parents are to help their children overcome setbacks, help them see their progress over time, and guide their children in making the right decisions (Merryman). A lack of communication or support can halt one’s progress towards reaching fulfillment. When someone a person loves shows disappointment or disapproval, it can be difficult to feel confident in one’s self especially when they are doing their best to please their loved one. The main character of Two Kinds wasn’t able to become fulfilled because her mother failed to communicate with her in a way that would allow her to understand why she was disappointed. The girl’s mother wasn’t willing to support the main character through her struggles of discovering herself and thinking positive. Even though body language can be considered a form of communication, verbal communication allows people to gain feedback that they will be able to remember and use to improve themselves. Social interactions and having a support system are important in helping to build one’s self-confidence which is the next step in this model.

 
Self-confidence, or being able to be happy with one’s body, knowledge, and accomplishments is the next step on the path to becoming fulfilled. It is critical for a person to be able to have faith in who they are and their abilities because it allows them to continue gaining confidence in themselves. In today’s society, especially in schools, students are pressured to achieve good grades, particularly A’s so that they will feel good about themselves. Receiving a B in school is still a good grade to receive, however, most students feel that receiving a B in class doesn’t make them look as intelligent and doesn’t make them feel as accomplished as receiving an A does (Lieberman). In order for a person to achieve self-confidence, they must stop measuring themselves to others. They must “stop gauging [themselves] and comparing [themselves] with others’ accomplishments and possessions” (Green). A person must realize that only they can control their actions, feelings, thoughts and worry about themselves. When someone has faith in their abilities and has a plan for themselves in a sport, school, or life in general, they will be successful and ultimately become fulfilled, like Novak Djokovic, #1 men’s singles tennis player in the world. Starting at a very young age, not only did his coaches and parents know that he had potential to be an amazing tennis player, but he too knew he could be great. In order to do that, he worked extra hard, trading in his recess time for tennis practice and now Djokovic dominates the men’s professional tennis tour (Novak: Novak Djokovic). Believing in one’s own potential and and abilities assists them in becoming fulfilled and having loving relationships can back up one’s self confidence and journey to fulfillment.

 
Love can be defined as a strong feeling of attraction for someone, whether it be a friend, family member, or a significant other and it is beneficial to one’s happiness and sense of security. Not only this, but love allows a person to get closer to reaching fulfillment. When a person is in a loving relationship with someone else, they are willing to sacrifice their time and strength, mentally, emotionally, and physically. Oog from I Love Girl, spent every night he could moving rocks to form a path for Girl, whom he loved very much. He wanted Girl to be safe and have a more efficient way of getting to the river from her cave (Rich). Love is important to have in one’s life because it helps people “get through tough times and [allows them to] reach [their] peak potential” (James), as long as it is a healthy loving relationship. Some people struggle to form healthy loving relationships. They communicate poorly, are rude to one another, or forget to support their loved one. Hamlet and Ophelia, for example, loved one another, however, they struggled to deal with their negative emotions in a way that would not damage each other. Hamlet upset Ophelia by rejecting her love, and with the death of her father still fresh in her mind, she drowned herself in a river (Shakespeare). Hamlet and Ophelia may have been in a loving relationship, but since it was a damaging relationship, the two lovers weren’t able to become fulfilled. Love allows a person to feel as if they have accomplished something good in their life. It gives them a sense of accomplishment, urges them to be the most helpful, generous person they can be, and brings them closer to fulfillment.

 
Doing good things for others and wanting to be able to help other people learn is pivotal to one’s development towards reaching fulfillment. Having the satisfaction of helping others, getting good grades in school, receiving awards in sports, and recognition in one’s community are not only important to the confidence and security of a person, but their sense of accomplishment. Men’s #1 singles tennis player, Novak Djokovic, has had a successful tennis career and this has given him confidence as well as a strong sense of accomplishment. Not only does he have a sense of accomplishment with his career, but he has had success with his foundation, the Novak Djokovic Foundation, which raises money for poor children throughout Serbia in order to build and create safe, nurturing, and fun environments for them to learn and play in. So far, his foundation has helped over 10,000 children in Serbia (About Us: Novak Djokovic Foundation). Djokovic has been willing to give back to the people of his country and this has added to his sense of accomplishment. Others may not be as successful as Djokovic or have a wonderful tennis career like he does, but they may still be willing to perform helpful acts for others. However, some people may not have a sense of accomplishment because they haven’t been successful in anything or don’t have the motivation to accomplish something like the main character of Two Kinds. She was constantly pushed to try new hobbies and activities with hopes of becoming a prodigy in at least one. Since she wasn’t successful in any of the activities she tried, she had no sense of accomplishment and was unable to motivate herself to feel as if she had a sense of accomplishment let alone fulfillment.

 
Before a person can finally become fulfilled, they must have self-motivation. Self-motivation is a person’s drive to push through difficult times and get work done on a day to day basis. If a person wants to become wealthy, lose weight, or meet a certain goal, they have to create a plan and follow it. According to a surfer interviewed in Happy, a documentary, “If [a person] wants to be a surfer, they will be, and if they want to be a doctor, they will be”. A person should do what they enjoy and want to do so that they will be the happiest they can be and have the most insight on their life. If someone wants to perform better in a sport or academics they need to push themselves to work hard and accomplish their goals like Peekay in The Power of One. Despite the beliefs of most people in his life, Peekay believed he could become the welterweight champion of the world. With long, hard hours of work and training over many years, Peekay managed to stay undefeated in his boxing matches and “earned an exaggerated reputation as a boxer” (Courtenay 342). Peekay was motivated to prove everyone in his life wrong and accomplish something great in his life. Even when a person is in a position of strength or at the top of their game, they need to be motivated to stay on top and become even better so that they can remain in their position. In an interview with Djokovic about being in the #1 position, Djokovic said, “I believe that all guys that are out there are fighting each week to get to number one and I know that… I think that you need to work twice as hard when you’re up there” (Stutchbury). When someone is lacking motivation, they struggle to accomplish goals or succeed in many things. The main character of Two Kinds had no motivation to try to become the next Shirley Temple, an expert pianist, or even succeed in school after failing in many activities. Even though her mother would persuade her and find ways to motivate her daughter to become successful, they would never motivate the poor girl (Tan). A parental figure or a friend could be doing whatever they can to push or force someone to become good at something but this will usually never motivate the person to accomplish a goal. In the end, it is the individual being pushed that has to force themselves to practice and succeed. Once a person is able to motivate themselves to accomplish goals, be successful, and find happiness within themselves, they can become fulfilled.

 
After a long journey filled with positive and negative experiences, a person finally can become fulfilled, realizing all that they are able to do, what their potential is, and that they are as happy as they are. Fulfillment is the satisfaction or happiness as a result of accomplishing something in a career, school, sports, or anything in life that comes from becoming a fully-developed being. In life, a person will experience many ups and downs, successes and failures. They have to learn to overcome the negative aspects of their lives and watch as their successes slowly become bigger and more important in their lives. When a person believes that they have enough accomplishments to quit trying in life and finally relax, but they continue accomplishing goals, they have become fulfilled (Gordon). Becoming fulfilled means that one is happy with who they are and all that they have accomplished (Cort) and in order to do this, a person must embrace change as well as the unknown. They must enjoy the process of reaching goals and discovering how to reach fulfillment. When a person reaches fulfillment, they are humble, have a purpose to life, are motivated by growth, and aren’t bothered by the little events in life (Sze). Even after a person is fulfilled, their work is never done and they continue to set and accomplish goals. A fulfilled person knows that there is always room to improve and learn, so they are eager to try new activities and hobbies that will keep them satisfied and happy with their accomplishments and life. This new model gives a person unlimited room to continue accomplishing goals and improving themselves once they have become fulfilled.

 
The hot air balloon travelled over luscious, green pastures and fields of wildflowers. The passengers inside excitedly waved down at cars, which appeared as ants in a long line from high up in the sky. The people could see so much from their halcyon place in the sky. They felt happy, truly happy. The ride up into the sky gave them a sense of excitement as well as accomplishment in life, giving them motivation to keep trying new things and be successful. This new model with the analogy of a hot air balloon is more fitting in modern times than Maslow’s old model. It touches on several traits and needs that Maslow missed with his model. It also allows a person to continue growing and improving, unlike Maslow’s model which abruptly ends after one becomes self-actualized. In order to become fulfilled, a person should satisfy their basic needs, need for communication, have self-confidence, love, and a sense of accomplishment. A person must also be benevolent and have self-motivation. Only after a person has acquired all of these traits and satisfied their needs, can they reach fulfillment, allowing them to truly be happy and see the world in a new, bright, and encouraging light.

Works Cited
“About Us: Novak Djokovic Foundation.” Novak Djokovic Foundation. Novak Djokovic Foundation, 2016. 30 Mar. 2016.
Cort, Sean. “Achieving Self-Fulfillment in 2012.” Psychology Today. N.p., 2 Jan. 2012. Web. 03 May 2016.
Courtenay, Bryce. The Power of One. New York: Delacorte, 2005. Print.
Gordon, Emily Fox. “The Meaning of Fulfillment.” The New York Times. The New York Times, 25 Oct. 2014. 03 May 2016.
Green, R. Kay. “4 Steps to Self-Actualization and Becoming the Best Version of You.” The Huffington Post. 18 Jan. 2013. 03 May 2016.
Happy. By Roko Belic. Dir. Roko Belic. Perf. Anne Bechsgaard, Gregory Berns, Roy Blanchard.
Netflix. 03 July 2013. 28 Apr. 2016.
Harden, Blaine. Escape from Camp 14: One Man’s Remarkable Odyssey from North Korea to
Freedom in the West. New York: Viking, 2012. Print.
Lieberman, Matthew D., Ph.D. “Self-Esteem vs. Esteemable Selves.”Psychology Today. N.p., 29 Mar. 2012. 02 May 2016.
Merryman, Ashley. “Losing Is Good for You.” The New York Times. The New York Times, 24
Sept. 2013. 03 May 2016.
“Novak: Novak Djokovic.” Novak Djokovic. N.p., 2012. 30 Mar. 2016.
Rich, Simon. “I Love Girl.” The New Yorker 17 Dec. 2012. 2 May 2016.
Shakespeare, William. Hamlet. New York: Simon & Schuster Paperbacks, 2012. Print.
Stutchbury, Greg. “Djokovic Vows to Work ‘twice as Hard’ to Stay at Tennis Summit.” Evening
Standard. N.p., 31 Jan. 2016. 30 Mar. 2016.
Sze, David. “Maslow: The 12 Characteristics of a Self-Actualized Person.”The Huffington Post. 21 July 2015. 03 May 2016.
Tan, Amy. “Two Kinds.” The Joy Luck Club. New York: Penguin, 1989. Print.

Across the Universe: Book Review

Across the Universe by Beth Revis is a sci-fi, young adult novel that was originally published on November 29, 2011 by Penguin Group. It is the first book of the Across the Universe trilogy.

Amy is a cryogenically frozen passenger aboard the spaceship Godspeed. She has left her boyfriend, friends–and planet–behind to join her parents as a member of Project Ark Ship. Amy and her parents believe they will wake on a new planet, Centauri-Earth, three hundred years in the future. But fifty years before Godspeed’s scheduled landing, cryo chamber 42 is mysteriously unplugged, and Amy is violently woken from her frozen slumber.

Someone tried to murder her.

Now, Amy is caught inside an enclosed world where nothing makes sense. Godspeed’s 2,312 passengers have forfeited all control to Eldest, a tyrannical and frightening leader. And Elder, Eldest’s rebellious teenage heir, is both fascinated with Amy and eager to discover whether he has what it takes to lead. Amy desperately wants to trust Elder. But should she put her faith in a boy who has never seen life outside the ship’s cold metal walls? All Amy knows is that she and Elder must race to unlock Godspeed’s hidden secrets before whoever woke her tries to kill again. (Review from Amazon)

Across the Universe was a very unique and thrilling read. Revis did a wonderful job portraying the emotions and thoughts of Amy, the main character. It was easy to understand how Amy felt and more interesting to visualize what she was experiencing on the Godspeed. The love story between Amy and Elder was cute to follow along with. I found the ending to be rather dramatic and somewhat disturbing, but other than that the book was enjoyable. I look forward to reading the second and third book of the series and can’t wait to see what happens next with Amy and Elder. I recommend this book to those who are fans of the Galahad series, Battlestar Gallactica, Prometheus, as well as Ender’s Game.

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The Djoker

Some people want it to happen, some wish it would happen, and others make it happen like #1 men’s singles tennis player, Novak Djokovic. Djokovic is a person that has reached his full potential because he loves and dedicates his life to tennis, works to become a better person and athlete daily, believes that his family is important, takes care of himself, inspires others, and accepts whatever happens in his life and makes the best out of it.

Novak Djokovic picked up a racket for the first time when he was four years old during a summer camp in Serbia. From that moment on, he decided to dedicate his life to the sport and traded in recess and playtime for tennis lessons. He worked long hours with his coaches, who knew ‘he would become a champion [because] he was focused, conscientious, and above all, talented’ (Novak: Novak Djokovic). Despite economic and political struggles in Serbia, Novak’s family sacrificed a lot of time and money and was able to support him to travel to Munich, Germany to receive training at a prestigious tennis academy. According to Djokovic, “…family is the most important thing and you have to stick with the family”. In Munich, he was able to grow extensively as a tennis player. As time went on, young Djokovic became a more dominant and developed player winning important tournaments throughout Europe. Finally in 2003, Djokovic acquired his first ATP (Association of Tennis Professionals) points and turned pro. Since then, Djokovic has dominated the men’s professional tour with 703 career wins and 63 titles (Novak Djokovic: FedEx ATP) and is considered one of the greatest men’s tennis players of all time.

He inspires tennis players, young and old, all over the world with his amazing sense of humor earning him the nickname, “the joker”, his powerful presence on the court, and beautiful technique. Djokovic has reached his full potential because of this. The 28-year old tennis player is always looking to better himself as an athlete and person. He spends long hours on the court as well as off the court perfecting his technique, sticks to a strict, healthy diet, and conditions his body often to improve his strength. Being #1 in the world can be a tough position to hold onto, especially with players like Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal challenging Djokovic often. Djokovic says that to keep his top spot he vows “to work twice as hard” (Stutchbury). Even though Djokovic is #1 in the world and has been successful, he has dealt with failure along his path to reaching his full potential. Djokovic says, “A failure is not always a mistake, it may simply be the best one can do under the circumstances”. Being able to accept his mistakes and losses have been able to make Djokovic the strong person and tennis player he is. On top of balancing his personal life with his tennis schedule, the #1 singles tennis player founded his own foundation which helps “preschool-aged children from impoverished areas get the chance to learn and play in a safe, creative, and nurturing environment” throughout Serbia (About Us: Novak Djokovic Foundation). With the help of many volunteers and generous donations, Djokovic’s foundation has already been able to build 18 schools, support 325 families, train 636 teachers, and help over 10,000 children (About Us: Novak Djokovic Foundation).

Novak Djokovic has reached his full potential because he has taken advantage of his talents and abilities. He knows that he can make a strong impact not only on the tennis court but around the world. Djokovic said, “I believed I could do it” and that he did.

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Works Cited

“About Us: Novak Djokovic Foundation.” Novak Djokovic Foundation. Novak Djokovic Foundation, 2016. Web. 30 Mar. 2016.

“Novak Djokovic.” Bio.com. A&E Networks Television, n.d. 30 Mar. 2016.

“Novak Djokovic: FedEx ATP Win/Loss: ATP World Tour: Tennis.” ATP World Tour. N.p., 2015. 01 Apr. 2016.

“Novak: Novak Djokovic.” Novak Djokovic. N.p., 2012. 30 Mar. 2016.

Stutchbury, Greg. “Djokovic Vows to Work ‘twice as Hard’ to Stay at Tennis Summit.” Evening Standard. N.p., 31 Jan. 2016. 30 Mar. 2016.