You know I love to share examples of teens getting out there and seeing there dreams become reality, and I can't wait to see what this young man does next!
Without further ado...
Isaiah lives with his mother and older sister in the beautiful mountains of Tennessee. When he was young, he spent hours hunting snails and newts in the woods and crayfish in the creek. A young deer often joined him, staying just outside of finger's reach. He also loved building with K'Nex and learning how things worked.
When Isaiah was 5 years old he saw a Boy Scout troop selling hot dogs at a festival, and he announced he wanted to join Scouting. He became a Cub Scout as soon as he was old enough to join and is now a Life rank Boy Scout, about to begin work on his Eagle project. Through Boy Scouts, Isaiah has had many exciting adventures, formed strong friendships, discovered the importance of community and service, and learned many valuable life skills. Scouting has given him greater confidence in himself and is helping him to make plans for his future.
When Isaiah was in 7th grade, his 6th grade TCAP test scores resulted in him receiving an invitation to take the SAT exam. After thinkig it over, he decided to do this, even though he didn't think he was ready to take a test most people don't take until they are in high school. He did better than he expected and his SAT score led to offers from various colleges to attend summer educational camp programs. In the summer of 2013, he attended the Vanderbilt Summer Academy in Nashville, Tennessee, where he studied astronomy. He was familiar with summer camp, having been to 4-H camp and Boy Scout camp in previous summers, but it was the first time he went to a camp that was like school. Even with the work and studying, VSA was so much fun that when Vanderbilt suggested he apply for a scholarship to attend the Nanotechnology program the following summer, he did. he won the scholarship and attended VSA for the second time in the summer of 2014. Studying nanotechnology helped him to learn more about science, engineering and energy, which are his possible areas of interest for studyig when he enters college.
When Isaiah entered high school in 9th grade, he listened to a visiting Upward Bound Program representative talk about the benefits of joining the Upward Bound Program. It is a government sponsored program that helps high school students improve academically and guides them through the process of applying for college. Isaiah decided to join Upward Bound. He attended monthly Upward Bound meetings through the school year and this past summer, spent one month taking classes and living on campus at East Tennessee State University. His language arts class teacher at Upward Bound gave him a picture of a kitten as a prompt for writing a children's story, which resulted in the creation of his recently published book, "Suzy's Yarn". He had a great time at Upward Bound. Besides the regular class schedule, the students had many extracurricular activities, including a trip to the Biltmore Mansion in Asheville, North Carolina and a trip to Atlanta, Georgia, where they spent three days seeing sites like the aquarium and the Coca Cola factory.
"Suzy's Yarn" was not Isaiah's first writing project that became a book. His 8th grade language arts teacher encouraged students to partcipate in NaNoWriMo - National Novel Writing Month - which happens every November. Isaiah completed his novella, "The Blind Tiger" as a result of his teacher's encouragement. Anyone can join NaNoWriMo. Here is a link to learn more.
Isaiah still lives in the mountains of Tennessee, but he doesn't spend as much time with snails and newts. Some of his daily chores include cleaning the chicken coop and caring for his other pets. He and his family live with chickens, ducks, cats, dogs, parakeets, hermit crabs and a special Guinea Pig named George. Isaiah says George is like a puppy that never grows up. Isaiah often reads on the floor so George can snuggle under his chest and read with him, or they watch TED Talks videos on Youtube together.
Isaiah just turned 15 and got his learner's permit to drive. With the prospect of driving a car comes the prospect of a part time job in the near future. Life gets really busy in the teen years but Isaiah seems to handle his schedule well. Keeping things organized is his "edge", and he can often be spotted organizing the pantry and closets for his disorganized family.