Ariana Rodriguez was a student in my first year writing class in the fall of 2014 at Salem State University. She arrived a week late to class, telling me her family was recently homeless. They were living in a motel that had been converted to a shelter just off the highway in Saugus. When I gave my students the task of writing an instructional essay, this is what Ariana composed. I have tried to stay in touch with Ariana, but she has disappeared from the Salem State University’s registry.* Ariana is a gifted student, with the courage and strength of a samurai.
*Before she disappeared, she gave me permission to publish this essay, which I hope in some small way might further help her and her family out of their recent financial crisis.