Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Photo Essay

Design Plan
The audience for my photo essay will include my classmates and my professor. The context will be the day that the final version is due. We will all pull up our final product on our laptops, then go around and view each other’s projects. Our photo essays must be 8 to 10 pages long and relate to our research topics. It will include original photographs with captions that should be easily understandable. I think I am going to try and raise questions to make the audience form an opinion on either why college athletes should or should not be paid a salary. I still need to take more photographs that will better show this visually. Colleges already pay for athletes’ tuition and supply them with gear and apparel, so why should they be paid? However, the athletes bring in a whole lot of money for schools. I need to take some photos that will ask these questions. This topic has been getting more and more controversial recently. I want my audience to think about where they stand on this conflict. Colleges already spend a lot of money on athletes. Some athletes get their tuition fully paid by the school, while getting free apparel and gear. So why should schools go even further and pay them like it’s a job? I created a PowerPoint presentation for this photo essay. The photo essay contains photographs and text. I am a little concerned about getting quality photographs to display my argument. Also, I need to think about how I am going to arrange the photos to make a good argument. I think I will have two or three photos arguing that they should be paid and then two or three photos arguing why they should not be paid. So, the main question: should college athletes be paid?

Closing Comments
I think overall I accomplished what I set out to do. Some of my photographs could have been better, but I think with the limited resources I had available, they do a decent job. I think I raised the questions that I was planning to raise in my design plan. When thinking about whether or not college athletes should be paid a salary, I think this photo essay does a good job showing both sides of the argument. 

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Photo Essay

This was the first time I have ever been assigned to create a photo essay. At first, I thought it would be pretty easy. Not so much. I am trying to raise questions about why or why not college athletes should be paid. So far, collecting photographs for this specific topic is not nearly as easy as I thought it would be. I am sort of limited as to the photos I can take because I do not play a college sport so I don't have first hand experience. I have to try to get the best pictures I can, but its not that simple. Maybe I am over thinking it. I'm not sure if my photos really tell what the argument is. Some of them might be too vague. On the other hand, I do like the idea of a photo essay. I like it more than the same old papers that I have been writing throughout the years. It makes you think outside the box as to how you can relate to your topic through pictures.

Thursday, February 20, 2014


Nick Maxwell
Professor Wielgos
College Writing 2
February 20, 2014
College Sports: The Most Exciting of all
            How does the National Collegiate Athletic Association or NCAA gain interest on their website? Well, they do this in multiple ways. Media used on the page include text, photos, videos, and links opening up other pages. I think the target audience of the NCAA webpage is college students and even their parents. The audience may also include sports fans in general, anywhere from children to adults. Anyway, students at certain colleges typically want their respective school to succeed in athletics, as do their parents. Using this website is an easy way to stay updated on sports, especially because it is accessible at any time. The arrangement is simple. There is an eye-catching picture in the middle of the page where the viewer first looks. After seeing that, the eye goes in a clockwise motion to the top of the page, followed by the right hand side of the page. When it comes down to the use of rhetorical strategies, the NCAA effectively used the ones that apply to a website for sports. The overall purpose of this website is to keep the world up to date on the events occurring in college sports. The way the NCAA designed the homepage of their website grabs the attention of the audience and provides the latest sports news and information to them.
            The NCAA website is the best source for collegiate sports information, considering the fact that college athletics are the NCAA. Some of the most recent scores of games are listed on the top of the page with a link allowing the viewer to see all of the scores. Above that, there are several drop-down menus where specific sports or schools can be searched. Another menu allows anyone to purchase tickets to athletic events, or even apparel representing the desired school. An aspect that many websites have is advertisements that the audience is forced to look at on the homepage. Nonetheless, this website does not include advertisements on the homepage for apparel and tickets. I think this is a huge positive because it does not pressure you right away to give them money. Continuing, for all of the social media users, there are links to follow the NCAA and share information to Facebook or Twitter for example. Along the right hand side of the home page, there are links to view the latest news from around the country. Perhaps the most noticeable and intriguing aspect of the site is the large clickable picture headlines. One picture that is larger than the other pictures at the top implies it is currently the most notable headline in college sports. As one scrolls down the page, there are several more pictures containing other important stories. Then, toward the bottom of the page, there are current rankings for different sports.
            I think the NCAA does a respectable job encouraging interest in college level athletics. Though there is some text present, the visual portion of the page seems to be the main emphasis. Actually, I do not believe they could operate a successful website without major usage of visuals.

This photograph was the largest picture on the home page of the NCAA website on February 17, 2014. It influences the viewer to feel excited about this particular event. The story behind the picture is that Minnesota won their third straight duals championship for wrestling. However, much of the story can be interpreted without even reading the actual article about it. The individual wrestler is seen with his hand raised as if he is waving to the crowd in victorious fashion, while his opponent remains on his knees in disappointment. The fans in the background are clapping and apparently screaming out of excitement. When viewing this on the front page of the website, it immediately draws interest. In fact, the visual is essential to the story because it really brings out the importance of this victory for Minnesota. Without it, the audience cannot easily put into perspective the emotions that this specific moment withheld. With that being said, the homepage mostly focuses on an ethos appeal by inducing emotions typically including excitement.

            Although the visual portion of this page is overwhelming, the little text that is included sums up the entire story as well. The above image was captured during a basketball game between the number one ranked Syracuse and the unranked Boston College. The headline on this picture included, “Down goes No. 1.” Just these few words sums up what happened in this faceoff. Syracuse had previously been unbeaten thus far in the season with a record of 25-0, though they are now 25-1. Boston College, with a mediocre record, managed to defeat the best team in all of college basketball. The simple headline supplements the photo extremely well as it makes the audience want to read what happened. Even if basketball is not your sport of choice, this combination immediately triggers curiosity.

            For the 2014 NCAA March Madness tournament, the well-known billionaire Warren Buffet is offering one billion dollars to anyone that can create the perfect bracket. This would consist of predicting every single winning team out of 64 total throughout every round in the entire tournament without getting any wrong. The odds of successfully doing this are next to impossible. Getting to my point, the thought of winning one billion dollars for filling out a bracket sounds incredible. The above video is a humorous way that the NCAA is attracting more attention to the tournament. It is displayed on the homepage where it can be easily viewed. This video evokes thoughts of being very wealthy, which results in people that normally do not watch the March Madness tournament, to watch it. I think having this video on the homepage does a superb job of attracting more attention to the NCAA.
In conclusion, I think this is a very successful website. It informs the audience of different things going on in sports around the country in college with mainly photos supplemented by text. Even if one is not interested in a certain sport that made headlines, it is hard not to read about it due to the electrifying way the NCAA displays it. Nevertheless, a logos appeal does not apply too much to this type of website. When it comes to an ethos appeal, well, all of these sports operate under the NCAA so they are the most credible source for information pertaining to college athletics. The homepage is very strong considering there is not much in depth information on it. Instead, you get multiple captivating headlines that direct you to full articles if more information is desired. After all, this website engages the audience very effectively

Works Cited
“NCAA.” National Collegiate Athletic Association. Turner Sports Interactive, Inc., n.d. Web. 17             February 2014. http://www.ncaa.com/

Monday, January 27, 2014


My name is Nick. I am from Carol Stream, Illinois. I went to Glenbard North High School and graduated from there in 2013. I lived in Carol Stream my whole life and grew up with two older brothers. I also have a rottweiler named Harley who is a great dog. From the age of four, I have played football along with other sports where I made some of the best memories of my life. In fact, during my senior year of high school, our football team at Glenbard North made it to the state championship and we played at the University of Illinois in Champagne. My closest friends that I have in my life today are those who I met at some point playing football. Anyway, after high school, I found an interest in aviation and decided to attend school at Lewis University to become a pilot. One of my brothers also goes to Lewis and is in the aviation field of study. I am hoping to become the captain of a cargo carrier for a company such as UPS or FedEx. I have really enjoyed the college life and learning about flying and airplanes and I cannot wait to see what the future holds.