"So many people live within unhappy circumstances and yet will not take the initiative to change their situation because they are conditioned to a life of security, conformity, and conservatism, all of which may appear to give one peace of mind, but in reality nothing is more damaging to the adventurous spirit within a man than a secure future."

-Christopher McCandless

Planting Day

WHO am I?

People call me Nate. I was raised in Arnold, Mo., a city about 20 miles south of St. Louis, and I recently graduated from the Missouri School of Journalism in 2014.

People are my passion and learning is my favorite pastime. The combo of the two lead me to my field of study — convergence journalism with an emphasis in humanitarian journalism.

My experience as a journalism student has significantly altered my worldview and ignited a sense of curiosity pertaining to the spread of information and how society is influenced by it.

Our world is far from perfect, but I’m determined to do whatever I can to be part of the solution, not the problem. Together, I’m confident we can learn towards a better world.

WHAT can you expect to gain from visiting my blog?

In short: insight, diverse perspectives, life lessons, rationalization and a deeper level of thinking.

Often I banter that keeping a personal journal qualifies one for the venerable term journalist because my journalistic style tends to stray from traditional standards.

My style is more focused on using journalistic techniques to educate — to educate you, myself and my audience. Journalism has evolved into a collaborative effort, and I encourage you to take part.

The opinions I publicly express through writing are intended to inform, raise questions and spark meaningful conversation. Invoking a reaction is my aim.

You can expect useful content relating to worldly issues and our role as humanity, not bigoted rants or personal complaints.

My goal is to foster a respectful community where people feel comfortable sharing their thoughts, feelings, experiences, expertise and perspective — an outlet for people to gather in the pursuit to learn towards a better world.

WHERE do my views come from (HOW are they formulated)?

Growing up, I admittedly had problems with unilateral authority and dogmatic certainty.

Each day I strive to have a reason for all of my actions and decisions. How does validity remain in the absence of rational thought?

Enraged by such insistent ignorance, I began working to derail such shallow arguments.

The derailment effort may appear liberal to some and conservative to others, but my arguments are always intertwined with facts. My opinions belong to no political party or organization for they are continuously being shaped by the dynamic process of critical thinking.

My opinions are a byproduct of my cumulative life experience and universal truths. This is how my interest in humanitarian journalism surfaced. What makes us human? What does it mean to dehumanize? Who dehumanizes and how? Why?

My involvement with the Occupy movement in 2011 played a significant role in shaping my interest in humanity. After witnessing the disconnect between reality and what’s portrayed on television, my brother and I decided to take a cross-country venture dubbed the Occupy Tour in search for truth. The opinions, demands and anger of protestors varied on countless levels, but the human element and motivating factors remained consistent nationwide.

As for the business sector: I have experience working with social media and content marketing, which has influenced my apathy towards the marketing holocaust encroaching the planet. And my experience working at a financial institution has caused me to loathe money more than I ever thought possible.

When it comes time to defend the position of my opinions, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights is frequently my initial go-to. The Constitution, Declaration of Independence and Bill of Rights are all extraordinarily well-crafted documents, but they are limited in scope in our globalized world.

A close-up examination of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights provides an opportunity for us to learn towards a better world.

WHEN did I start writing/producing media?

Writing down my thoughts, views and opinions dates back to my grade school days. Fortunately, I like to believe my writing has developed a bit through time.

Upon entering higher education, my writing skills got a journalistic tuneup.

The Missouri School of Journalism offers a variety of specialized courses, which helped sharpen my communication skills. And as a result, I was able to articulate my message more clearly — ultimately helping us efficiently learn towards a better world.

WHY should you care about what I have to say?

Time is valuable. I get that. I value my time as well as yours.

The value of the content I produce is weighed against the value of time. Stories significant enough to pursue (in my opinion) are then pursued. However, as mentioned above, journalism is now a collaborative effort. I welcome any suggestions or concerns pertaining to the topics of choice. My opinions are fruitless without an audience. You’re valuable to me, which is why I further feel an obligation to be of value to you.

So, you should care about what I have to say because I’m committed to fostering constructive dialogue and cautious about preaching fact as truth.

I want to help bridge the gaps of misunderstanding between diverse groups of people to inspirit positive change, and I’m convinced that relies on our conscious choice to learn towards a better world.