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Company Purpose with Social Issues

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Professor Jackson

ENGW 3306

19 April 2017

Unit #5 Reflection


        While developing my questionnaire for the research aspect of Unit #5, I aimed to create an interview that would foster a natural conversation, as well as touch on a myriad of themes present within reading and writing. Specifically, I asked questions such as “What drives you to read and write?”, “What do you generally read or write day-to-day?”, and “How often do you read and write?” to draw conclusions about how one’s major or profession can influence one’s relationship with reading and writing. Moreover, I asked questions such as “How have your reading habits changed over the years?” to gain insight into how age and generation can affect the reading and writing individuals engage in. Lastly, I inquired about the individuals’ reading and writing habits outside of work through asking questions such as “What are your favorite genres to read?” and “Is reading something you like to do in your free time?” in an effort to seek out more trends pertaining to age, gender, and profession. In general, most of my questions were centered around reading rather than writing, as people generally read more than write.

        When selecting my interviewees, I aimed to have a diverse group of participants, in regards to age, profession, sex, and interests. With this in mind, I interviewed my father, a 48 year-old vice president of communications for a health insurance company. I also interviewed two students here at Northeastern - one is a 19 year-old female communications major currently on co-op at Northeastern’s College of Arts, Media, and Design, as well as a 19 year-old female pharmacy major.

Overall, through conducting this research, I hoped to unearth interesting patterns pertaining to individuals’ reading and writing habits, and be able to draw parallels back to my own reading and writing habits. Through these discoveries, I may be able to incorporate some of the habits I discover into my own life, and make reading and writing a larger part of my science-driven college experience.

Interview #1 - Father

        For my first interview, I decided to ask my father about the role reading and writing play within his life. As I mentioned earlier, my father is a 48-year old vice president of communications for a health insurance company in Rhode Island. His job requires a large amount of written and verbal communication with the public, as well as with his colleagues. Most of the writing he does day-to-day are emails to his co-workers to get tasks done, but he is also responsible for writing advertising campaigns.

As health care is a dynamic field, a lot of my father’s reading pertains to current events in health care. Because Rhode Island is such a small state where politics can influence pretty much everything, my father reads the Providence Journal to keep up. He also reads Twitter to stay up to date on the news, as well as to see if the news is covering the company. Lastly, he reads laws and regulations to make sure none of them are broken in the marketing and advertising he is developing, as well as customer surveys to ensure that the marketing he is working on will be effective. In his breaks at work, he would read short articles to reduce stress and to attempt to stimulate creativity. Outside of work, my father does not write a lot, but enjoys reading news articles online from websites such as Drudge Report, biographies, and books on architecture.

When I inquired about how my father’s reading habits have changed over the years, I learned that he has always enjoyed to read and write more than do science and math. As a child, he did not read a lot. When he graduated college with a degree in Sports Management, he worked in advertising for a professional hockey team. At this point, he was doing a lot of reading surrounding sports. When he entered the health insurance field, his work-related reading shifted to current events, involving politics and health care.

Interview #2 - Communications Student

        For my second interview, I spoke with one of my friends at Northeastern who is a second-year communications major. She is also currently on co-op at Northeastern’s College of Arts, Media, and Design. Because she is on co-op right now, the majority of her reading and writing have to do with her work. She is responsible for CAMD’s online content, which involves reading a lot of social media throughout the day, on forums such as Twitter and Facebook. She also writes social media posts for CAMD on Twitter and Facebook. Additionally, she is responsible for writing articles for the CAMD website, as well as sending out emails that those within the college receive. When she is in classes, a large percentage of her assignments are writing-based, so the majority of the writing she does is through academic papers. Outside of work, she does not write, but does enjoy to read a lot. When she reads, she prefers classics, and one of her favorite authors is Kurt Vonnegut. Lastly, she likes to read Buzzfeed and other online news outlets for leisure.

        She also stated that she has loved reading since she was a child, and always had an inclination towards language arts. When I inquired about how her reading habits have changed over the years, especially since coming to college, she stated that she feels like she doesn’t have as much time to read for leisure as she used to. Furthermore, a lot of the reading she did before college was part of an English class, and she has noticed that classes in college usually don’t have you read an entire book as part of the course. Instead, there are short readings online, or excerpts of books.

Interview #3 - Pharmacy Student

        For my final interview, I opted to talk with an older student in the pharmacy program at Northeastern. When asked what reading and writing they do day-to-day, the answer was that most, if not all, of their reading and writing was science-based. More specifically, most of the reading was textbooks or lecture slides pertaining to pharmacy, and the writing assignments were either lab reports or pharmacy-based as well. The student I interviewed did not read or write much in her free time. She said when she did have free time, she preferred to do things that did not require a large amount of brain power - such as watching Netflix. However, she did say that she enjoyed reading short articles on Buzzfeed or other online platforms to stay up to date with current events.



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