Meet Micah James
Why Wake Forest? Micah James says Wake Forest struck him as the kind of place that embraces community and puts an emphasis on the importance of diversity and broadness of perspective. “The educational environment seems to rely on a one-on-one relationship between teachers and students,” he says.
You’ve had an unusual childhood. Tell us about your background.
I was born and raised mostly in Haiti and am the child of medical missionaries. I speak Haitian Creole. To me, Haiti is the most wonderful place on Earth. At times, I feel as if my soul is a magnet – with a natural pull towards that small island nation. The people of Haiti have taught me to cherish each relationship I have with others as an integral part of this journey we call “Life.”
If you could travel through time, where would you go?
I’d go back to the ’80s or ’90s- where it would be culturally acceptable to listen to a Walkman® and wear funky exercise clothes. More importantly, I think I would rather go back to 1930s or ’40s India and meet Mohandas Gandhi. His wisdom and compassion for the human race and his commitment to nonviolence are things that I have always admired. He is a great model and influence on my life.
What are your favorite activities outside of academics?
That’s got to be a little bit of doing absolutely nothing. It never hurt anybody, and it’s always a good idea once in a while. Other than that, attempting to play backyard soccer and backyard guitar would show up on my list.
You learned carpentry skills in New York. Tell us a bit about this experience.
Ah yes, carpentry in New York has taught me never to rely on my own skills (or the lack thereof) without first consulting a master carpenter. As an apprentice to carpenters in an intentional community in New York, I learned that when extremities such as arms or fingers are involved, choose the option of keeping them. I think the most rewarding part of the work was seeing the contentment and appreciation in people after fixing or straightening up a part of their house. The most frustrating part is when you realize you have just put a beautiful cabinet on the wrong wall.
What film has most inspired you and why?
“The Mission,” (old, but still good), is inspiring to me because it portrays the conflict between standing up for your beliefs and refusing to fight because it is against your beliefs.
What will you be thinking on graduation day?
I’m sure I’ll be thinking, “Who are all these people in fancy gold and black gowns? Wait, I’m wearing one, too!” I think I will also be reflecting on how Wake Forest has shaped my journey and about the broad array of people it took to keep me on the “road of life.”