Struggling with the death of a loved one in 2011, New Orleans-based artist Candy Chang turned her grief into a project that inspired people to think about what they wanted to accomplish before they die.
Chang painted the side of an abandoned house in her neighborhood with chalkboard paint and wrote the prompt: "Before I die, I want to ____."
Soon the wall was overflowing with responses and the project went global with 4,000 "Before I Die" walls being created in more than 30 languages spanning more than 75 countries.
On Tuesday, Charter Day at the University of Guam, "Before I Die" walls will be unveiled on campus. The project is led by professor Vince Borja, who teaches Business Essentials at the college.
"The purpose of this project is to invite the community and Charter Day attendees to reflect on their desires and narrow their goals to one big thing they would like to accomplish before they die. The 'Before I Die' project will encourage the participants to express their unique desires and values, and share their hopes and anxieties, their joys and struggles," said Borja.
He said the goal is to teach the business students about the impact of declaring a big goal that most want to accomplish before they die.
"We hold me accountable to accomplishing some of the biggest goals of my life," said UOG student Dong Choe.
Borja said, "My goal as their instructor, is to help them find their passions and come up with a strategy on how to get there."
The outside wall at the university's library will serve as a palette and students have constructed a portable wall that will be set up at the School of Business and Administration.
'Take time out and think'
"How often does someone really take the time to think about what they want to do before they die?" asked sophomore Aimee Delos Santos, who helped construct a 12-foot-long by 6-foot-high wall for the project. "This wall, I think, will really inspire the community and the other UOG students just to take time out and think about what you want to do before you die. It could be something big or something small."
Student Amos Duampat, 23, said most young people don't often think about death.
"When I heard about it, I thought I should make a bucket list and start making goals," he said.