Emme Blackbourn, 18, of Dixon, is Dixon High School’s January Student of the Month. She is the daughter of Darla Pearson and Brian Blackbourn, and has two sisters, Maddie Blackbourn, 20, and Ellia Pearson, 4.
Favorite class: Psychology. It is something that I have always found interesting, but Mr. Woodward made us think about certain topics in ways that we have never done before as well as presenting a lot of interesting material to fit the topics we were discussing.
Least-favorite class: Honors Algebra 2 my sophomore year, because that was the first year we used an online computer program for math and it was very difficult to learn how to use it. Each semester brought its own challenges; first semester we had to keep up with the fast-paced class material without having time to slow down to figure out the online program, while second semester was when the coronavirus first hit, causing us to try to learn math with remote learning.
Favorite teacher: Spanish teacher Wendy Fitzanko. She made her classes a lot more enjoyable by presenting us with different games, activities, and videos to help us learn the new material, which also helped with making the material less intimidating. She would also always check in with us on how our weekend went, how we were doing in other classes, how our sport seasons were going, and so many other things which added to the overall positive environment in her classroom and showed us that she cared about her students
School activities in which you participate: Cheerleading, becoming co-captain this year, track and field, class officers, and Student Council, becoming secretary this year.
Civic, church, or other volunteer activities in which you participate: I have done quite a bit of volunteer work. Some organizations that I have volunteered for are Goodfellows, Salvation Army, Tools for School, and the American Red Cross blood drives. I have also helped with tours for incoming freshman and decorated Washington Elementary School’s sidewalks with chalk to welcome them back to school.
What will you do after high school? I will be attending Illinois State University to major in special education specializing in low vision and blindness to become a teacher of the visually impaired.
What is something you learned in high school that you think you’ll never use? The number i. Since I am not going into a heavily math-based field, there will be no use for imaginary numbers, because the only numbers I will be using are real numbers.
If you could change one thing about your school, what would it be? The four floors. I have taken the hike from the first to the fourth floor numerous times since freshman year, and it never gets easier.
If you could create any new class at your school, what would it be? I would create a class that prepares seniors for the real world by teaching them simple tasks like how to budget, pay bills, interview for jobs, sew, cook, and just how to adult.
What does it take to be a successful high school student? Students need to work hard, do not procrastinate, do not be afraid to ask for help when needed, and get involved.
Do you have a job? I have worked at Basil Tree Ristorante for a year now, but I am having to cut back due to having two demanding sports seasons going on at the exact same time on top of school. However, the staff created a fun, enjoyable, and safe environment to be in, which made it very enjoyable.
How would you describe your group of friends? Outgoing and fun group. There seems to never be a quiet second when we are together. They are also very supportive, and I know that I can count on them for anything.
Who is your best friend? Noelle Herwig. Even though she is a year older than me, we have grown up together dancing, cheering, and working together. Most of the time we see each other five to six times a week. Noelle is one of the most genuine, funny, and supportive people I have ever met.
What do you do in your free time? I am a competitive dancer at S&R Dance in Freeport. In the little free time that I do have I like to spend that time with my friends, family, and dogs, relaxing watching comedies, baking, or playing card or board games.
What kind of music are you listening to? I listen to a wide variety of music genres such as alternative, singer/songwriter, country, pop, R&B, and some rap.
If you could go anywhere in the world for free, where would it be? Greece, due to its remarkable history, unique architecture, perfect weather, stunning landscapes, and, of course, the food.
What is your favorite childhood memory? Those that were made during the summers my family and I spent at my family’s river property camping, boating, tubing, and the perfect campfires.
What is the best way to cheer you up? Put music on and obnoxiously sing along with me, watch funny movies, or go get ice cream.
What is your life’s philosophy? “Perseverance is key.”
Do you have any pets? I have three dogs; two are goldendoodles, Wrigley and Duke, and one is a bernedoodle, Maverick.
What would you do if you received $1 billion dollars all of a sudden? I would make sure my college was paid for along with my older sister’s college as she is going to school to get her doctorate degree in occupational therapy. I would make sure my little sister had enough for her college, too. I would then give a decent amount to my parents for paying for my expensive dance competitions for 13 years and just because they deserve it. The final thing I would do is put some into my savings and donate the rest to a charity that helps those who have a disability.
Is there anything else you want people to know about you? I am an extremely clumsy person.
Movie: “Pitch Perfect”
TV show: “Schitt’s Creek”
Pro sports team: Pittsburg Steelers
Source: The Daily Chronicle