Written By: Andriana Ruscitto
For some people, personal tragedy can affect how they succeed in life and derail their plans. For Carrie George, those challenges only made her stronger.
When faced with a challenge, Carrie, the graduate fellow at the Wick Poetry Center, looks for a way, not a way out. And her accomplishments are testaments to how she found a way, time and time again amidst obstacles and difficulties.
During her time as an undergrad at Kent State University, Carrie was betrayed by people close to her several times, including incidents of sexual assault and harassment.
She pushed herself to get involved and not feel shame because of things that were not her fault.
As an undergrad, Carrie took on several leadership roles. She worked for Luna Negra, the literary arts magazine at Kent State, for all four years of her undergrad, serving as the editor-in-chief her junior year and the managing editor her senior year. She worked for Brainchild, the honors literary art magazine, for three years.
Throughout her time working for these publications, Carrie made a significant impact in the journalism program by creating projects which brought these two student publications together for the first time.
Carrie’s past traumas with sexual assault and her love for poetry both influenced her to join the Northeast Ohio Master of Fine Arts Program to work toward a master's degree in poetry.
She is now able to tell her own story of trauma through her work.
“It took a really long time for me to get to that point,” Carrie said. “I wasn't always able to even admit that it happened and then to write about it was extremely difficult for me.”
She now uses poetry as a form of healing to work through previous challenges she has faced and to help other women who may have experienced the same thing. These experiences are a part of her now. So, while she is not happy about the experiences, Carrie expressed that she would not be where she is right now if they had not happened.
In the past year, Carrie became the graduate fellow at the Wick Poetry Center, where she oversees interns and student workers. "The Wick” as she calls it, has made a huge difference in Carrie’s life.
When she had trouble finding a support system in other communities at Kent State, the literary community was always nothing but reassuring. “Here at the Wick, it is nice being able to write and feel supported in my art and creativity,” George said.
Carrie plans to continue writing poetry and hopes one day to teach poetry as a form of community building. Through an open mind and determination, Carrie will continue to help and inspire those around her through her artwork.