Eminent Introductory Post: Norman Borlaug

One billion lives saved from starvation. A hundred million acres of forests saved from logging. Doubling food production in over 6 countries. You would think any person linked to these feats would be a common name, but unfortunately, Norman Borlaug is very obscure to the everyday person.

Image result for norman borlaug

I first stumbled upon Borlaug’s name after reading about him in the corner of my history book about a 2 years ago. The entire page was covered with texts about the Green Revolution and advances in agriculture, all things that interested me, yet one thing caught my eye. It wasn’t the title, “Norman Borlaug”, but it was the small phrase in the third sentence, which read,”The man who saved a billion lives”. He stood out among others because although he had done so much, I had not even heard of his name. To this day, I still do not know the exact reason of why I chose Borlaug. I researched dozens of people from that exact same textbook, but Borlaug was the only one who felt really eminent. Perhaps, it was how very few people knew of his feats. Perhaps, it was how he was worthy of being eminent, yet others were considered before him. Whatever it is that drew me into choosing Borlaug as my eminent, I’m glad it did, because now I have rekindled my interest in plants, and I feel an urge to let people associate the name Norman Borlaug with the definition of eminent.

Similar to Borlaug, I can see myself studying plant genetics in the future, or at least going into one of the STEM careers. For some reason, I have always been interested in plants and the various ways of raising them, and STEM has seemed to be my forte and a strong interest to me. It has always intrigued me of how certain plants needed certain climates, and I thought about experimenting with genetics sometime in the future to create hardier plant varieties. I do not know whether I will achieve such eminence like Borlaug, but I believe it may be possible depending on what the future holds for me. I can see my unwillingness to take huge risks being an obstacle to achieving eminence. Borlaug wouldn’t have created his own wheat varieties without the risk of possibly losing his job from angering his boss. Perhaps learning more about how Borlaug approached risks will help me overcome my fear of risk taking.

There are quite a few differences I’ll have to address between Borlaug and I. Borlaug was born into a working-class, farming family, while I was born into a middle class family. Borlaug was born in the United States, while I was born in South Korea. We obviously belong to different races. Borlaug is a white male, while I am an Asian male. Despite some differences, I believe Borlaug and I are quite similar. We were both brought up in a Christian household, he was a Lutheran while I am Roman Catholic. So far, most of my life has been spent in North America like Norman. I believe that differences, such as race and places of birth, can be overcome, as long as I can connect to Borlaug in more than I can differentiate from him.

From learning about Norman Borlaug, I intend to learn more about what it takes to be eminent. I hope to learn more about genetics and the field of plant pathology. Through eminent, I want to know if I fit the criteria for a plant pathologist. Already, I have read about the various difficulties involved in tweaking plant genetics. By being able to find similarities between Borlaug and I, I believe I will greatly improve my connection skills and analogies, which will help me find simpler analogies to complicated topics in science and math. I want to be able to prove that Norman Borlaug is eminent and that his controversial opinion on GMO foods is actually correct. By successfully doing so, I will be able to improve my persuasive language and have success in future events, such as interviews and speeches. I also hope to improve my public speaking skills, which is one of my IEP goals. Through eminent, I plan on learning more about Norman Borlaug, but I also plan to learn more about autonomous learning in general.

Not only am I excited to learn about Norman Borlaug, but I am also excited for the chance to introduce my eminent to others and share the legacy of Norman Borlaug on the night of the notables.

Food is the moral right of all who are born into this world- Norman Borlaug


Jerome Norman
Male Male
Spent most of childhood in North America Spent entire childhood in North America
Korean Background Norwegian Background
Canadian American
Farming Ancestry Farming Ancestry
Considering Plant Pathology as a future career option Plant Pathologist and Plant Genetics Engineer
Donates to humanitarian aid organizations around the world Sends humanitarian aid to other parts of the world.
                        Table tennis player Wrestler
Played an array of sports as a child Played an array of sports as a child
Privileged Upbringing Less privileged upbringing
Somewhat Innovative Innovative
Does a lot of outdoor activities Did a lot of outdoor activities as a child
Fed myself instant noodles Fed the world
Saved approximately 200 ant lives Saved over 1 billion lives
Stubborn Stubborn


Dad is Dying

Upon reading the first few paragraphs of Stuart Mclean’s story, it is obvious that the lives of Sam’s family are in shambles. Sam is plagued by the illness of his dog. His dad is obsessed with his own health, leaving no time for spending time with his family. Meanwhile, his mother is burdened with loads of work. Sam’s lie seems to bring the family back together. His father, Dave, who is obsessed with his own personal health, starts to see himself as good-looking after his neighbors shower him with compliments. Morley, whose mind is usually in a frantic disarray, starts to slow down and spends her time relaxing and spending time with her neighbors. For example, the last chapter started with Morley and Dave having a backyard barbecue with the Turlington’s. Sam notes that he hadn’t seen his mother look so relaxed in months; she was smiling and happily chatting with her neighbors. Sam finds that by expressing the haplessness of his situation, he can use others’ pity to fulfill his wants, such as his want for more free ice cream. Sam’s obliviousness to the negative effects of his lie, however, will prove to have very negative consequences in the long run. All the people Sam lied to, such as his teacher and the ice cream store employee, will feel very resentful towards Sam for tricking them. It will take him a long time to regain the trust of those he tricked, if ever. All those misunderstood conversations between Sam’s parents and their neighbors will make future conversations very awkward. His parents won’t take Sam’s decision to lie very kindly. Sam may not realize it yet, but the guilt and humiliation he and his family will feel because of his lie will outweigh the positive effects of his lie. He is probably in for a harsh punishment from his parents. Though temporary “goodness” has shadowed the consequences of Sam’s lies, it won’t be long before Sam is engulfed in a tsunami of hectic events, some of which may not be very pretty.