I visualized a glamorous, imaginative, aesthetically pleasing and metaphorical learning centre with a riveting speech and a new outlook on the world. Needless to say, I didn’t exactly meet my original dream. Despite falling short of some of my expectations, I am overall satisfied with my end result.

At the end of the exhausting night, I looked back and relished in the work I had accomplished. I especially was proud of the three interviews I acquired, one from a TALONS alumni, from an author, and from a member of the Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation. An overriding goal I had in mind when I began this crusade was to gain most of my knowledge from interviews and strengthen my communication skills, and I believe I sufficiently fulfilled these goals. I relentlessly pursued people to interview, sending email after email and doing an unhealthy amount of Google searching to find contact information and phone numbers. The hard work paid off, and all three interviews I had were successful and very effective.

An aspect I would improve on next year is my time management and my learning centre. My focus was directed towards speeches and interviews, and as eminent loomed near, panic set in as I recognized the lack of progress I had made on my learning centre. My idea was to have a glamorous desk and a movie poster, emulating┬áthe initial impression of Elizabeth Taylor, and to have people lift up the curtains on the side of the locker bay to see her less recognized activism and feminism. As I was given an asymmetrical locker bay, the outcome didn’t look exactly as I wanted it to, but still offered a central piece.

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My table features jewelry, makeup, an interactive mirror, and a letter she wrote to President Reagan, urging him to address the issue of AIDS/HIV.

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I created a poster board with her movies and acting.

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The most memorable aspect of NotN was the enlightening conversations I had with many parents who were teens or children during the 80s, and witnessed many actors dying from AIDS and the profound significance the epidemic held in society at the time. Visitors were fascinated by how they were oblivious to Taylor’s activism, despite living in the same time period as her. I loved talking to visitors and asked them what their initial impression of Taylor was, receiving a variety of answers. The interactivity of the curtains was effective, with the photos beneath surprising many.

I’d like to thank all the TALONS teachers, my classmates, and specifically Kailey for working with me on the MC script and being a super awesome friend! Everyone was supportive and I express my utmost gratitude to all my peers and teachers.