St. Ignatius

Agent of Change Project

Step One: Select an agent of change.

Some of your choices:

Angela Davis Rodolfo "Corky" Gonzelz Gloria Steinem Helen Zia Malcolm X
Dolores Huerta Wilma Mankiller Larry Itliong Sylvia Mendez Dennis Banks
Katherine Johnson Yuri Kochiyama Harvey Milk Richard Aoki



Your teacher may provide additional choices.

Step Two: Research your assigned person. You will need to use at least three sources and cite them on the back cover of your graphic nonfiction book. Use the following questions to guide your research: 

  • When and where did your hero grow up?
  • What was his/her childhood like?
  • How did his/her childhood influence his/her future endeavors? What is this person’s educational background?
  • What was the situation the person was trying to change?
  • Is this person still alive?
  • Why is this person considered an agent of change?
  • How has this person effected positive change?
  • Is there any controversy surrounding this person?


Start in the shallow waters before diving into the deeps. In other words, gain a basic understanding of your research topic before you explore more difficult, more complex sources.

Use Student Resources in Context as a starting point. Most of the people in this project have biographies you can use as resources on this site. It will get you the basic information you need to begin to dig deeper. If you're on campus, you will automatically log on to Student Resources in Context. If you're off campus, use this page for passwords.

After you've read a basic biography (if available) on Student Resource in Context, check out The New York Times (freely available if on campus wifi) or National Public Radio to see if there is an obituary or other article reflecting on the person's life. These are good places to learn public attitudes towards your person.

You may also be able to find a helpful book from our book collection. Search our catalog to see if there is something available for you to use.

And, to dig deeper, to gather primary sources like interview transcripts, videos, photographs, letters, etc, The National Archives are going to be a valuable source. Use a limited search in Google for the archives. In the Google search box, enter this phrase: Then, place your person's name in quotations around it (eg "wilma mankiller"). This will search the National Archives through the Google analytics to which you are accustomed.

Step Three: Create a graphic nonfiction book about your person.

  1. Answer the questions above in a succinct way.
  2. Use visuals and pictures to illustrate your information.
  3. Draft your graphic nonfiction book. (If your teacher wants you to use storyboard templates, you can find them here.)
  4. Create a Bibliography (not Works Cited, since you're not citing within your book) for the back cover of your graphic nonfiction book. Include citation entries generated by the school subscription databases you use and or similar in your Bibliography.


Step Four: Review, Revise, Refine.

You may not consider yourself an artist, but everyone has style. During revision, make sure your graphic nonfiction book represents your style. It should be information about your person presented through your own vision. To see examples of this, check out the library's collection of graphic books. All books that begin with GN in the library catalog are graphic books (novels, nonfiction, memoir, comic strips, etc).