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White Paper Again

April 19, 2012

I know it is a bit late for this, but I have been extremely busy and have not found much time to blog.  I wanted to give my thoughts on the white paper project, now that it has been graded and returned to us.  My last post did not go into very much depth about the project.  The grade we received was a 94%, which I thought was extremely impressive considering that only 3 of the 4 members of the group contributed substantially to the paper the day before it was due.  The three of us essentially researched, added 3,500 words, formatted the paper, and revised and edited the paper in its entirety.  The process took about 8 hours that night, and by the end of it, we were all exhausted.  After a while, we just accepted the fact that the paper was as good as it was going to get.  Evidently, that was pretty good considering our grade on the assignment. 


The overall process of creating the white paper should have been planned out better.  We did have a schedule, but with everyone balancing other commitments, it was hard to meet up, and we were unmotivated to work on it individually.  By the time the deadline was approaching, it was crunch time, and we had to work on it very last minute.  It ended up working out for us because we put in a lot of time and effort when we met. 


There were several challenges that we were faced with and overcame.  The first one was the length of the paper.  It is a daunting task to write over 5,500 words on one topic, especially without being repetitive.  We managed to overcome that challenge pretty easily.  Another problem we had was that early on, our paper lacked a direction.  We didn’t know whether to address poverty on a global, national, or local level.  While writing our final draft, I noticed we still vacillated between talking about poverty nationally and locally.  After that, it was a relatively easy fix.  Without having to do any additional research, we were able to transition well between when we discussed both local and national poverty.  The focus was on poverty in Atlanta, but we used statistic and information about national poverty to put our statistics about Atlanta in perspective.  The biggest challenge was by far getting everybody in one area to work together on the paper.  We almost accomplished that goal, but it was the best we could do.


Overall, this was a successful project.  I had never written a group essay before, but it turned out to be a decent experience.  There were ups and downs with the cooperation of one of my group members that I didn’t really appreciate, but overall I’m proud of the final product.  This was a good learning experience for me, and there is a lot of things I learned that I will apply to future assignments.  


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