The most powerful weapon on Earth is the human soul on fire.
My name is Draxie Leah Elswick, but I go by Leah. My name is a huge part of who I am because Draxie is also the name of the most amazing, thoughtful, and loving person in the world: my grandmother. I am a Junior from Honaker, Virginia that attends Emory & Henry College. This makes my second year as team captain on the softball team. I also have the privilege of calling myself a Bonner Scholar. My majors are Civic Innovation and Sociology with a Spanish minor. I enjoy outdoor adventures like hiking, rock climbing, and white water kayaking. Emory has opened so many doors for me which you will read about later.
This is me
No one is born hating another person because of their skin, background, or religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite. -Nelson Mandela
But, Who am I?
I do this and that, but who am I?... I was born in rural Southwest Virginia, and I love my beautiful Appalachian mountains. I grew up in a place that taught me the value of hard work. Growing up in a place where I had to fight for opportunity is what characterizes who I am today. I would not say opportunities were easily obtained, but I am blessed enough to be one of the one's to find them. While getting to know me, its important to know that I love words like, passion, purpose, resilience, transformation, authentic, and empower, and those are just the main few. These words alone help me tell my story. Not an indignant story full of anger and annoyance, but a journey that shows resilience and what I think it means to be intentional, purposeful, and meaningful. I believe so strongly that anyone can do anything if they find the gumption to try. Although, trying typically means failing, I fail a lot. In everything I do, I fail most of the time. I grew up playing softball, and in that alone, I fail 60% of the time on a good day. These words and ideas of how I live my daily life are how I would describe myself as an innovator. To me, being innovative is hanging up my cape, using my sociological imagination, and making relationships in order to tackle local problems. In Rebecca Bagley's article, The 1o Traits of Great Innovators, Innovation can be described as thinking outside the box, having new ideas, and new approaches. Passion is what drives these ideas and in order to make great accomplishments is by embracing everything. Embrace all the talents and attributes individuals within the community have to offer, as well as the community partners, and not to forget helping the ones in your organization do their part. Also, embrace failure. Embrace the lessons that come when you fall short while continuing to have enough boldness and fearlessness to get back up and look fear in the face. I can tell you I possess these qualities, well at least I try, but there is not really a right or wrong. So, continue to scroll, read and let me show you how I am taking these innovative ideas and putting them to work in every aspect of my life in my own way. This is who I am. Almost everyday I find ways to stay motivated and uplifted. Below are some links to my favorite talks and videos.
Click and watch what molds my day-to-day thinking!