An Unexpected Reformation
2023, Junior, Creative Writing
Climate Hero: Nicole Guzman
THIS INFORMATION IS CREATED AND RECEIVED BY THE INTERNATIONAL AGENCY FOR OBSTRUCTION OF ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE OR IAOEJ
FAILURE TO DISPOSE OF THIS FILE IMMEDIATELY WILL RESULT IN INSTANT TERMINATION
CASE FILE: Ms. Nicole Guzman
April 20, 2023
Ssisonemi. Hello, I’m back after my first mission on the case. After receiving this mission a week ago from our esteemed funders, The World’s Top Climate Villains (WTCV), I have done some recon on the target. Here’s my data on the person in question so far:
- Nicole Guzman is a middle school science teacher. She leads the YES club, the Youth Environmental Society, a student extracurricular activity devoted to spreading the Climate Message. To date, under her enthusiastic leadership, the club has acquired 25 members, but its message seems to be spreading across the school, district, and community at-large.
- A 7th grade science teacher with a smiling Earth as her profile picture, Ms. Guzman is responsible for teaching biological sciences, but spends a significant amount of time promoting the climate change agenda.
- She’s been converting students to the climate change ideology by having them recycle paper from classrooms. By recruiting a student, Brooke, as her co-founder, she has increased the club’s student appeal.
Some data I have found:
- Guzman applied for and received the “Climate Awareness Education – Implementing the NJ Student Learning Standards for Climate Change (23-WB01-G02)” grant for composters that will be put in use at the school next year. Note to self – must destroy.
After gathering this information, part one of my mission is complete. I shall contact you soon. Gmanirw. -Anonymous
May 3, 2023
Oluntolip. I have now finished part two of the mission. I have infiltrated the school as a student and have joined the YES club. How, you may ask? I just walked right in, and I was welcomed without a thought. Never did I think being a spy was so easy. When I first entered the classroom, I was shocked. Shelves were filled with scattered beakers of different sizes, walls were plastered with models of the human body, and plants were strung everywhere. But what I found most fascinating was the skeleton sporting a YES T-shirt with a green towel draped around its neck, clearly a lure to attract unsuspecting students to YES’s mission. The subject had just started the meeting. There was no opening statement. Members enthusiastically got right to their assignments. Ms. Guzman had clearly brainwashed the students! Part three begins tomorrow. Iscsri. -Anonymous
May 15, 2023
Ootnacimntnai. I have not finished part three, but I will disclose some of my notes to date:
- May 5th – “I wonder if Ms. Guzman is on to me. She’s been so willing to acclimate me to the club’s efforts… almost too willing.”
- May 7th – “It seems my previous suspicions were wrong. Ms. Guzman and the students really aren’t skeptical, especially Brooke. Ms. Guzman’s enthusiasm is spreading like a plague.”
- May 10th – “WHY? WHY DOES SHE HAVE TO BE SO NICE AND PERSUASIVE?”
- May 11th – “The club met today. Apparently they have an ongoing program in which they put a blue lid on each recycling bin in the school. Then teachers and students put vile printer paper in the bins. Ms. Guzman explained, “If we can recycle enough paper, indirectly, it addresses the climate change problem. A small part that our school can contribute, that’s small scale.”
As we filtered into the classroom, she explained what the club accomplishes at each meeting. They split into small groups and assign each group a job. One group creates more blue lids, while another one collects the paper. They go to each classroom, collect the paper in the recycling bins, and after convening in the classroom, join together to throw all the paper into a gigantic storage bin outside, which is later sent to a recycling center. It seems I will have a hard job. I shall contact you soon. Tldbsaoianeztii. -Anonymous
May 24, 2023
Htuodgr. I must report some… regrettable news. I have not been able to complete part three of my assignment. It seems this club is too hard to crack. Evil cannot take root if there are no fissures. Each day that I walk into that room, every lanyard I pass out and every blue lid I create, makes a dent in my conscience. I… I may be defeated. After all my years, I never thought I would be bested by a club of middle schoolers. Ms. Guzman and her seventh and eighth graders have pounded their motto into my head, their reason into my legs, and their commitment into my heart. I myself am saying YES to a cleaner environment. And so, in honor of Ms. Guzman, I have attached my letter of resignation. It was nice while it lasted, IAOEJ. Farewell. Recycle.
THIS MESSAGE AND ANY ACCOMPANYING DOCUMENTS CONTAIN INFORMATION ONLY FOR THE USE OF THE INDIVIDUAL OR ENTITY TO WHICH IT WAS INTENDED
I wrote this piece to emphasize positive change through the efforts of teachers like Ms. Guzman. In these turbulent times consumed with gloomy issues in politics, AI, and the pandemic, it’s hard to find optimistic stories offering solace and hope. But I found just that in Ms. Guzman’s YES club. I’ve learned how passionate teachers like Ms. Guzman can make a difference by fostering a sense of commitment among students to fight global warming. In my investigation of Ms. Guzman, I learned that she had been inspired by her study of environmental science in college. She also believes that working with young students is a primary form of making a difference. I also researched opposing forces working behind the scenes in the issue of climate change; e.g., the interests of big business vs. sustainability. Something I found inspiring were the grants that promoted community and educational efforts directed at climate change. Ms. Guzman took the initiative to apply for and secure such a grant for her YES club. Her integrity and commitment to wrestling with climate change has transcended individual recycling to attracting students devoted to making an enduring impact on the environment. Through my characterization of Ms. Guzman’s subtle conversion of the spy, I recognized her efforts to symbolize a hopeful future in the war against climate change. Despite all of the gloom and doom surrounding climate change, this competition convinced me that we should recognize that young people still have the potential to influence others and save our world.