Alumnus Corner: Olivia Rusch

LWW Class of 2020


Olivia Rusch

I cannot believe I have been out of Lincoln-Way West for almost a year now. My senior year was cut short unexpectedly, and although it was not the ideal way to end my four year journey at West, it was definitely unforgettable. I am currently in my second semester at Joliet Junior College; unfortunately I take all of my classes from my bedroom. This was a really hard transition for me because I am such a hands on learner. I had no zoom calls in my classes either, so I would simply read a PowerPoint and take a multiple choice test and that was it. This fall a few classes are going back on campus so hopefully I can meet new people and really start my community college experience.

I think the worst thing about my senior year ending so suddenly would be that I did not get to say goodbye to anyone at Lincoln-Way West. The things I miss most are my Peer PE gym class, Friday night lights, and art class with Mr. Labriola and all of my art friends. Speaking of art, I am currently pursuing my associate’s degree in art, and I plan on transferring to a photography program at a 4-year university. To be honest though, I am not sure if I want to pursue that as a career or just keep it as my favorite hobby. Picking a major is very difficult and I want everyone reading this to know that you do not have to have your whole life planned out after high school.

Even though I am a full-time student at JJC, I also work a lot outside of school at a local bakery in town, and I do some photoshoots on the side, as well. I am always on the go and I like to keep myself busy because doing nothing and being lazy is never in my daily routine. My sisters and I do a lot of themed photoshoots, building our own backdrops and using different props to make the pictures more fun. One of my favorite things to do is be creative with my sisters. I did a handful of senior portraits and some Christmas card shoots, too, for some of my close family friends.

Going into my first semester at JJC last August, I had 12 credits completed through dual enrollment and AP courses at LWW. I applied for any scholarship I could that semester, and I ended up receiving a couple, which paid for almost my entire first year of college. You heard me right, not just one semester, but my whole year of tuition almost covered by scholarships. I cannot stress enough how crucial it is just put in a general application to receive scholarships, no matter what school you go to. They’re giving away free money, and who doesn’t want that?

I know everyone in high school right now isn’t having the experience they had hoped because this last year has been a wild ride, but soak up every second you have within those walls. Although it sounds cliché, those four years go by in a blink of an eye, and if you don’t pause to look around, you’ll miss it!