Elizabeth "Izzie" Olson

Elizabeth “Izzie” Olson is a student, poet, singer, writer, future nurse practitioner and starting today a monthly contributor to the Student Success blog.

This morning I’d like to introduce you to Elizabeth “Izzie” Olson, an area student who will be a monthly contributor to the Student Success blog. Izzie grew up in Calumet and was one of the students who contributed art for the April Student Success Community Conversation. Here’s Izzie’s first post!

Success is defined as a favorable or satisfactory outcome. But for one certain individual, success means so much more.  As part of the Itasca Area Initiative for Student Success, I interviewed one of my fellow students in ALP whose name is Ilya Senty.  The ALP, also known as the Alternative Learning Program, is a place where students can learn outside the traditional school environment.  The ALP is located in the Marble School, and includes students enrolled through Nashwauk-Keewatin and Greenway High Schools. Different class sessions are available and Ilya is part of the afternoon class.

Ilya Senty

Ilya Senty, is currently a junior in the Nashwauk-Keewatin school district.

Ilya is 16 and will soon be turning 17. He was born in Pskov, Russia, and was adopted at the age of 7. He then moved to Grand Marias, shortly after being adopted. He has been a part of the Nashwauk-Keewatin school district for three years now and is currently a junior.

I asked what Ilya’s view of success was, and he had no problem coming up with an answer. Ilya says that his view of success is going through all the different stages of school, starting at preschool, and finally finishing high school; going to college, and getting a career that you enjoy. He believes he should not just have a job, but a career doing something you love. Success is also having a house, car and a family.

As of right now, he feels as though he is successful, knowing what he wants to do as a career, and knowing exactly what to do to achieve his goals. Ilya says, “Most teenagers, by the age of 17, should know what they want and need to do to graduate high school and move on to college.” When asked where he sees himself in 5 years, he stated that he would like to be an MP in either Iraq or Afghanistan. In ten years he sees himself as a police officer, with a very nice house, wife, and children. He wants to live in a place with technology, but near the woods. He wants his children to be successful, but not too dependent on the technology they have.

Even though I haven’t known Ilya that long, I have the utmost faith in him to achieve his goals, and live how he wants to. He seems to be a hard-working individual, and his success will be an example to the children he wants in the future.