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Open House 2017

English Major wins $1,000 reward for original song

Maria Woodson, fourth-year English major at Cal Poly, won $1,000 in an original song competition.

Contestants were asked to create an original song about the impact of climate change on the environment.  Woodson’s song “Daffodils” took home first prize in the “Protest Songwriting Contest” put on by Ecologistics.

I didn’t really write the song from a place of environmental protest at the time,” Woodson said. “I wrote it solely for my senior project last year, and it just so happened that I stumbled across this contest that ‘Daffodils’ was spookily so appropriate for.”

As part of her senior project, Woodson is creating a concept album where she writes and performs original songs inspired by the literature she has read during her education at Cal Poly.

“‘Daffodils’ was written during my time studying the Romantics - specifically Dorothy and William Wordsworth,” she said.  “‘I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud’ and ‘Thoughts From My Sickbed’ were the two major poems I drew from.”

Woodson says that her Liberal Arts education has given her the opportunity to explore how she can use all her interests and skills to draw a path for herself for life after Cal Poly.

“My time here studying literature has made me a confident and capable person who knows how to think critically, consider various perspectives, and express my ideas thoughtfully and clearly so that my peers and I can work together to create meaning,” she said. "This, to me, is what it means to have a Liberal Arts education.”

“Daffodils,” along with other music by Woodson, can be heard on SoundCloud.

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