Some of favorite stories.

Losing to Gain. Chuck Carroll stopped by Taco Bell so often the employees knew his $20 order by heart. Some days he went twice. Over the course of a year, Carroll estimates he spent $10,000 at the fast-food restaurant. The only thing surpassing his big expense was the 400-plus pounds he carried on his 5′ 6″ frame. Today, Carroll, a radio and podcast host, is 265 pounds lighter—and thriving. How did he do it? Read his story here.

Life Savers. It’s the waiting which is so hard. And Sarah Taylor knows waiting. Her partner, Keith Childerhose, spent months waiting for a new set of lungs, without which his prognosis was grim. “The waiting is horrible. You start to play games with yourself. You start to look—it is awful to say—you look at the weather patterns—oh, big storm coming, car accidents…” You can find out what happened next here.

Love and War. At Al-Furat University in Syria, Muhammad Sinjar studied English language and literature. He liked to joke he has always been interested in tragedy, which was in full supply in his home country. Sinjar left Syria in 2012. He said it was the hardest decision he ever had to make. Read his story here.

Over the Moon. And the Rainbow. When she picked up the phone, her manager asked, “How many seats do you want?” That’s how Sarah Lasko found out she would be playing Dorothy in the national tour of The Wizard of Oz. Meet Sarah and Toto too here.

Sick and Tireless. It’s Friday night and Lynn Wolfson is slicing up strawberries for a traditional Sabbath dinner at her home in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.  She says the berries are “big, fat and beautiful” but nonetheless she will not eat them.  Wolfson, who was born with Hirschsprung’s disease, is on the short bowel syndrome diet.  Or as Wolfson likes to call it, “chicken, fish and mush.” Read Lynn’s extraordinary story of surviving and thriving here.

Competitive Edge. As a kid, Michael Parsons told his mother he wanted to play ice hockey. She agreed but insisted he learn to figure skate first so he would have strong skills on the ice. He has not stopped skating since, winning awards and championships along the way. Read more here.

A Lost Boy.
Few students have taken a longer road to college than Guor Kiir.  Born in war-torn Sudan, Kiir escaped the country on foot, with only the clothes on his back.  It was just the beginning of a remarkable journey which you can read more about here.

Love Lessons. Dr. Leszek Sibilski, professor of sociology, might just be in love with love. He has spent a lot of time wondering if love can change the world, reduce poverty and boost conomic development. This is more than a fanciful romantic notion—it is a component of his Introduction to Sociology class. Meet Dr. Sibilksi here.

Speak Up! Free speech is a critical component of democracy, perhaps more important than ever. But speaking up can be a bit terrifying, especially for women. So I write a book about it! You can read an excerpt here.

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