Rohail Spear wrote his first short story in second grade, so he has known for a while that he wanted to major in creative writing at college. At Franklin & Marshall College (F&M), he enjoyed a philosophy class and decided to major in that as well. He will graduate in spring 2024. Spear’s long-term goals include authoring books that offer escapism. He wants to write unusual stories or common stories from a different perspective so that everyone is seen.
At F&M, Spear is a member of the Roschel College House Senate, serving as the Sustainability and Community Outreach Chair. It’s a good fit because he likes planning and executing activities and seeing the effects of his work. He is also the layout assistant on The College Reporter, the school’s student newspaper.
When away from college, Spear resides in a predominantly white community in New York. He has advocated for LGBTQ rights and to prevent climate change, but so far has been on the outskirts of racism and its effects. He tries to make change in the ways that he can, which include organizing cultural events as a member of the House Senate and writing about racially motivated incidents on campus and events organized by the Black Student Union. Spear doesn’t believe that he alone has the resources or skills to change someone’s mind about racism, but rather that distributing knowledge about resources, events, and cultures can have a more profound effect.
“Exposure is powerful in changing one’s belief system — exposure to people different from you, exposure to different ideas, exposure to events or incidents that you didn’t know happened,” Spear said. “My work in my House Senate, writing articles in my college newspaper and doing this [Writing Wrongs] program accomplish that goal of exposing people to events or stories that they may not know of and to traditions/cultures different than their own.”
If granted one wish, Spear would wish for money because of the freedom it would allow him to pursue a worthwhile job that he enjoys rather than working just to pay the rent.
His global wish would be for people to be rational and logical, because so many of the world’s issues could be solved if this were the case.
Spear’s leisurely pursuits include writing, spending time with friends, reading, playing piano taking pictures, and walking. The top item on his bucket list is to visit northern Italy.
“I grew up in a predominantly white town, and I do not believe that I have witnessed or experienced firsthand any racist actions towards others or myself in my childhood. In history classes we learned about how much America had grown from being the enslaving, racist country it was — never how much further it has to go. Naturally, I did not realize that America was still as racist as it was until last year. Along with everyone else, I was scrambling to find out how I had been so oblivious.”