Letters from Ypsilanti New Tech High School

By: Austin

Dear Austin

Our names are Yasmin and Reggie.  We are writing you a letter from biology class, we’re also 9th graders.  We are kinda the same because we are in high school.  We attend Ypsilanti New Tech High school.  It’s mostly project based learning.  That means most of the work is online, and we work on projects in groups.

Yasmin:  I  like to talk, and I’m a happy person. You seem like a happy and energetic person by the look of your videos on your blog.  I’m 14 years old, I’m going to be 15 in April.  My favorite person in the world is August Alsina, he is a r&b singer.  I love to eat food and sleep too.  My definition of beauty is what’s on the inside not outside, like how you treat others and act around people.  For example, today I helped this girl with special needs open the door. What’s your definition of beauty?

Reggie:  I’m Reggie, and I am 15 years old.  I like to meet new people, but I don’t really like to talk much to people.  I don’t really know why, which is kinda a back fire for meeting new people.  I like to play music like you do, but I play guitar.  Also I don’t play in a band.  Is it fun to play the drums?  I am also a gamer.  I don’t play any sports but if I did I would play football or baseball.  Do you like to play any games or sports?  What do you feel that beauty means? I think that there is no true definition of beauty.  Everyone has their own definition.  Some like looks some like personalities.  If I had to choose though.  I would go with personality over looks because good people are better then good looking evil people.


Yasmin:  I would like to know how it is to live with Moebius Syndrome.  Are there any challenges involved?  Also do people treat you different just because of your disorder? What effect did Rick Guidotti have on you?  I also would like to know if you would update your blog because I’m sure you have more interesting stories to tell about how you’re life is going.

Reggie:  How many surgeries have you had for the muscles in your jaw?  How has your disorder affected your life up to now? (Don’t have to answer if you don’t want to).  How does it feel to be working with Rick Guidotti?  Why not update your blog so we can see how you’re doing?

It was nice getting to know you


Yasmin and Reggie


Dear Austin

Hello, my name is Jenny. Usually I spend a majority of my time on the internet.  I also like to read different kinds of books.  Do you like books?  My favorite book is The Fault in our Stars.  Have you ever read it?  I also really enjoy music.  I listen to many different bands and artists.  I can listen to music for hours and never get bored.  Okay, enough about me.  In BioArt we are doing a project about beauty.  I would like to know your opinion about beauty. To me beauty isn’t what you see. It’s not about how a person dresses or looks.  It’s who they are on the inside.  If they have a beautiful personality then in the end that’s all that really matters.  And everyone is beautiful in their own way.  What is your definition of beauty?  What is beautiful to you?  We are also learning about genetic conditions.  What is it like having a moebius syndrome?  Are people ever rude to you and if they are, how do you deal with it?  Is there anything that your condition stops you from doing? How do work to overcome this?  I’ve heard that Rick Guidotti has done many things to help and show what people truly are inside.  How has he impacted you? Has he helped you with something?  Do you believe he is genuinely making a difference to help people?  If so, in what ways?  I really like that he captures beauty in different ways.  He shows people that just because you have a condition doesn’t mean anything.  You can be beautiful no matter what.  So I saw in your blog that you had surgery.  How did that turn out?  Are you happy with the results? Thanks for taking time to read this.





I’m Mary.  I guess I’ll start by telling you a little about me.  I’m 14.  I LOVE music.  I saw in your bio that you’re into music too.  What genres do you listen to?  I listen to basically everything.  My music library contains everything from Vance Joy to Fleshgod Apocalypse.  I also saw that you play drums.  Right now I’m learning to play drums and bass guitar but I’m not very good.  I’ve been doing unclean vocals for a while though and I’m pretty good at that.  I hope to be able to scream like Allisa White-Gluz from The Agonist someday but I think I’ve set my hopes too high.  I also enjoy art.  I draw all the time and I’ve gotten pretty good at portraits and facial features.  I painted a mural with a few other artists over the summer and it was great.  I want to do it again but I don’t know where I could and I don’t have others to help me.  Well, I think that’s enough about me.  From what Jenny wrote, I’m pretty sure you know about our bioart project on beauty.  I’m curious as to what your opinions on beauty are.  I personally think beauty is in everything.  One person can think something is ugly, while another thinks it is beautiful.  I think it’s hard for people to see beauty because they don’t look past what is physically visible.  They don’t look for the things that matter.  They look at what they find visibly pleasing.  Looks might seem important to some but true beauty lies beneath the skin.  When I draw, I don’t draw what I see.  I draw what I feel.  I draw what I have experienced.  I draw what is actually there, not what is seen.  I love what Rick Guidotti is doing.  He doesn’t photograph people, he photographs personalities and experiences and strengths. He is able to capture complex emotions in a simple picture and I think that’s beautiful.  It’s great that you’re working with him on this project.  Why did you decide to do it?  Were you worried about anything when you started?  I know you must have expected negative reactions from people.  It’s really brave of you to be doing something like this.  Maybe the PEARLS project will have a positive impact on some people.

Hope to hear from you soon.



Hello Austin

My name is Nick and my partner is Zariah and we are from Ypsilanti New Tech High School in Michigan.  We are doing a project about beauty in a class called BioArt here at New Tech and all of us doing this are sending letters to PEARLS Ambassadors as part of our project on beauty.  I see that you love baseball which I do and I actually play, I am a pitcher for our district.  The season here is over cause it is cold as a brain freeze here in Ypsi so I can’t wait until the season starts up back in the spring.  I also heard you’re in band and what instrument do you play?  I played the trombone in my band class when I was in 8th Grade.  I am 15 years on April 28.  I was wondering if I can ask you a few questions.  When is your birthday and and what grade you are in?  I have learned that you and me have more things in common than we know that we like all kinds of music which in case I and that we both get bullied rarely.

One of the favorite foods that we both like pizza.  We both do youtube videos.  I do videogame videos what kind of videos do you do.  I have another question what is your definition of beauty well mine is everyone one is beautiful in there own special way. What did you think when you were taking pictures with Rick Guidotti? And how is your disorder affecting your life as a teenager.  I look forward to you writing on your blog.  Austin it was nice to write to you stay cool man peace.



Hi Austin

My name is Zariah and I go to Ypsilanti New Tech in Michigan.  I am fifteen years old, I’ll be sixteen in March.  I love to read, write and sing.  Also I’m a big fan of wrestling and rock n roll music.  I see you’re in a band, what’s your band’s name and do you listen to any rock bands yourself?  Anyhow, me and my partner Nick are doing a project in class on Beauty, I was hoping if I can ask you some question if it’s cool.  My first question is how do you live your daily life with this disorder?  What are the challenges you face in your everyday life?  My second question is what is your definition of beauty?  How does it make you a better person and how do you use it to make you a stronger person?  If you want I can tell you my definition of beauty is personally, people many look at your personally.  Seeing if you’re a nice and kind person or if you are mean and rude. It kinda doesn’t matter what you look like, if you have long or short hair, black or white skin or anything really.  As long as you’re kind to others then you have true beauty.  Thank you for letting me write to you, I hope your doing well.  Be safe and stay awesome. See ya later.




Dear Austin

Our names are Mariah and Brandon.  We both currently live in Ypsilanti, Michigan and go to Ypsilanti New Tech High School.  In class we are working on a project about people with Genetic Conditions and we luckily got you to do our project on!  So, through this letter Mariah and I would like to tell you about ourselves.

Hi Austin

My name is Brandon.  I am from Ypsilanti, Michigan.  I am 14 years old, my birthday is September 7 and my zodiac sign is Virgo.  My favorite food is pizza and another one of my favorite foods is also mac ‘n cheese.  Something else you and I have in common is marching band, I played the clarinet during 7th grade, and in 8th grade I played the bass clarinet.  My favorite color is white and two places I hope to visit is Atlanta, Georgia and New York City.  So in our project we also have to talk about our definition of beauty and my definition is someone who is positive and respectful to other people.  Or someone who isn’t rude to other people.

Hey Austin

My name is Mariah Donnell.  I am from Ypsilanti, Michigan and I am 14 years old. My birthday is May 12 and and my zodiac sign is Taurus.  My favorite food is Mongolian and Shrimp alfredo.  My favorite color is black.  One day I hope to visit is Hawaii.  My definition of beauty is someone with a great personality.  That is what makes someone beautiful.

So Austin, since we told you what our definition of beauty is, what’s yours? Another question we would like to ask you is what is the effect that Rick Guidotti had on you?  Did he make you see yourself differently, or make you feel more beautiful?  How has your life been going since you haven’t been posting on your blog since September? We both hope that you fulfill everything that you want to accomplish in life!


Mariah & Brandon


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