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Choose a topic to write examples about: the high cost of education; student loan debt; African Americans in higher education; the value of helping those in need; or how entrepreneurship can change communities.

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It sounds like you have a lot of latitude to come up with an assignment topic that interests you! Open-ended questions can seem intimidating, but you can get a little bit of helpful direction from the list of examples you've given. They all focus on social or economic issues, so that's probably a good place to start as you think of your own topic.

Think about your life experience. What's your own economic background? Ethnic background? Community background? Are there any things about your experience in society that feel unique, or especially challenging when compared to the average person? How about your family—what struggles have you had that are unique to your experience?

How about the experiences of others? What sorts of things are other people doing in your community that you admire? What are the positive implications of that work? Can you think of any changes you'd like to see in your community that would make things better for everyone? Do you see weak points, where people aren't getting their needs met?

Once you find an area or idea that feels important to you, hone it down into an underlying concept to write about. If someone in your family was recently ill, for example, and now you have medical debt, your topic might be "the importance of public health infrastructure." If you really admire the work your friend is doing at a local food bank, you might turn that into "how communities can reduce food insecurity."

There's an advantage to picking something you already feel strongly about, but there's also some fun in picking something you don't know much about yet—it gives you the opportunity to examine an issue from a distance, critically evaluate what's going on, and make a decision based on the evidence.

Good luck!

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