Emma Kolesnik expresses herself through several outlets

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Freshman Ema Kolesnik

Ana Bello

Freshman Ema Kolesnik
Freshman Ema Kolesnik is a bright  student who loves academics, speech and debate, and colored tights.

Freshman Emma Kolesnik can be spotted around campus in a pair of bright colored tights, a polka dot sweater, and a printed skirt. With over 30 pairs of tights, Kolesnik has nearly every color of the rainbow and that’s not the only way Kolesnik stands out.

“I don’t really know many people at Foothill who dress like I do. I dress kind of differently. Lots of sweaters and colorful tights and skirts and stuff. I almost never wear jeans or pants, if ever. I think I’ve worn them once this entire school year,” she said.

A unique taste in fashion is not the only thing Kolesnik is invested in. She is a member of KIWINS, speech and debate, PAAC, Girl Up, and is devoted to her academics.

Kolesnik started her freshman year with an array of interests, but one in particular is math. Currently she is in Honors Trigonometry. The class consists of mainly upperclassman, creating an environment that can be difficult.

“There is some pressure just because you don’t want to do badly and see that you don’t belong in the class, but everybody is super nice and supportive if you do well on something, they are supportive if you do badly on something,” she said.

Being in such an advanced level math class is not typical for freshman, however, Kolesnik enjoys the challenge and complexities that math presents.

“I would say that it does come easier to me than most people. I’ve been really into math since I was very young,” she said. “I sort of like the problem solving aspect of it and the logic. I also really like the theoretical side of it and how the fact that we invented this whole system and then we have to work out all the quirks it’s kinda interesting to me.” 

 

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Math is not the only subject Kolesnik enjoys. She said she equally values political and social issues. She joined speech and debate and has competed in individual events such as extemporaneous speaking, thematic interpretation, and impromptu.

Kolesnik also competes in public forum debate with her partner, freshman Isaac Goldstein. The two prepare for tournaments by writing cases, researching, and practicing their speaking skills.

“I really like debate. It’s definitely time consuming but I think it pays off. There is a lot of research and organization involved and sometimes it can be hard to stay on top of all of that but I think I’ve done a fairly good job,” she said.

Goldstein believes they compliment each other as a team and that Kolesnik’s contributions are useful.

“I think our debate styles work together. She likes doing a lot of research, so she’s good at guaranteeing that we always have enough research to back up any claim we make,” he said.

Speech coach and English teacher Jennifer Kindred notices Kolesnik’s ability as a student and her humility that comes along with it.

“She is so impressive as a student, let alone as a student who is also a freshman. Just lightyears ahead where you expect a freshman student to be,” Kindred said. “Even though she has cause to maybe be a little haughty or a little arrogant, she’s not, and quite a refreshing change. Sometimes you meet people who are very brilliant and they have an ego that goes with it and she does not. There is no ego there at all”.

With a schedule filled with challenging classes and extracurriculars, Kolesnik said she has learned to balance her priorities to be successful.

“My top three priorities would have to be my grades academically, being well-rounded, continuing to take part in art, language and music, and probably some of the clubs I’m in,” she said.

Goldstein thinks that what makes Kolesnik different from most students is her ability to be comfortable to be her own individual.

“She doesn’t conform. If you’ve seen her around campus, you’ll notice that she doesn’t dress the way most other people do. She doesn’t act the way people do just for attention. She’s herself,” he said.

What do you think?