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Mikayla Silveira,Freshman, Gustine High School

Parents: Diane and Heduino Silveira

Born in: Turlock

Favorite subject: Intro to Ag

Favorite teacher(s): Mrs. Hazan, Mr. Ball, Mrs. Thommen

Favorite food: Pizza

Favorite app: Snapchat

Favorite emoji: Laughing face

Words to live by: “Relish the opportunity to be an outsider. Embrace that label -- being an outsider is fine, embrace the label - because it is the outsiders who change the world and who make a real and lasting difference.” -President Donald Trump

Favorite artist: Luke Combs

Last book read: “Not if I Save You First,” by Ally Carter 

Hobbies: Working with cows, hanging with friends, playing sports

Mikayla experienced both distance learning and in-person classroom instruction during her first semester at Gustine High School.

She commented be that she was among the few students that were able to return to the Gustine High campus when the school opened its hybrid learning program in November. During that time, she explained, learning was absolutely easier learning because she was in the classroom setting. That allowed Mikayla to interact with her teachers and take part in hands-on learning like she was used to, and shed was able to get her questions answered right away instead of waiting for an email response.

When  the district shifted back to distance learning only, Mikayla shared, she felt better prepared for that educational format.

“I felt it was a better transition back to distance learning. Because of what I learned in the classroom I was able to (apply) that to distance learning, and understand better,” Mikayla told Mattos Newspapers.

At Gustine High, Mikayala is actively involved in sports and clubs. She is part of the basketball and volleyball teams, is involved in FFA and is the freshman class secretary.

She mentioned that at first it was really difficult trying to come up with ideas with the rest of the officers and getting suggestions approved due to changing guidelines changing, but as time went on they figured out how to effectively hold meetings and activities in a virtual format.

“We decided to do our homecoming virtually,” stated Mikayla. “We got a lot more of the student body to participate more and more with dress up days and also activities.”

As Mikayla looks toward the future, she plans to attend college and major in ag business and minor in dairy science. She is undecided on her college selection at this time.

Mikayla’s motivation for studying ag business and dairy science styems from her dairy background. She grew up on a dairy, which has allowed her to see all the hard work and dedication that goes into to running a dairy. She has a passion for the dairy industry as a result.

As Mikayla describes her first semester of high school as challenging and difficult, but also a time that has taught her many lessons.

“It’s been a tough year. I didn’t get the normal and typical freshmen year," she reflected, "but what I have learned is that my health is important, along with (that of) my family and friends, and to not take a lot of things for granted because others have it a lot worse.”