Words: Marisa Foxwell Duttweiler ’13
Photos: Tony Hughes
Charles Hermesmann ’22 grew up in New Jersey and was able to attend Wheaton on the GI Bill because of his dad’s military service. From as early as third grade, Charles has been drawn to writing. He remembers sitting down with a yellow notebook (that he still has) and disciplining himself to write five pages a day until the notebook was full.
It comes as no surprise, therefore, that Charles is now an English Writing major. He also participates in several campus publication groups.
“Some of my favorite memories from Wheaton are from the newsroom,” he admitted, recalling the late nights working to finalize The Record for printing. Charles has become increasingly involved in the creative writing publications on campus, including Kodon and The Pub, working in the editorial departments for both. Charles is proud that these publications have been able to continue creating a platform for student art and literature despite the challenges of remote learning. They have even made new strides, such as setting up the “Pubcast,” a podcast featuring contributors and pieces from The Pub. Charles always wondered, however, if there were other interests and passions inside him besides writing.
He found a new passion in the Human Needs and Global Resources (HNGR) program. At fi rst, Charles didn’t know if he could successfully integrate English Writing with HNGR ideals, but it took only one intro class for him to realize that it was a unique experience to grasp.
“I found that learning about issues around the world—poverty and justice— that was it. That was what I was looking for to pair with my love of writing,” he said.
This decision reminded Charles of something his dad once told him. “He said he’d be supportive of whatever I chose to do in life as long as I wasn’t just doing it for myself, but I was also being helpful to another person or community,” Charles recalled.
Charles’ desire is to work with kids. He hopes his HNGR placement will involve working with youth and that after potentially attending graduate school he can pursue a career in teaching.