Class of 2020 Senior Spotlight - Katya Shakula, South Lakes High School and Fairfax Academy

By Katya Shakula, South Lakes High School and Fairfax Academy
Senior Spotlight
May 20, 2020

1) What has been your biggest disappointment/hardship since schools have been closed for the remainder of the academic year?

My greatest disappointment has been not being able to continue working with my classmates in my Pro TV Production Academy class. 

Katya Shakula, South Lakes High School, Fairfax Academy
Katya Shakula, South Lakes High School and Fairfax Academy

2) What are your plans for the fall?

I will be attending Emerson College in Boston, Massachusetts. I will be majoring in film production, which brings me infinite excitement. Also, I will be minoring in writing. 

3) How have your plans changed, if at all?

My plans haven’t changed yet, and I still hold resplendent dreams of moving to Boston and starting my freshman year looking out into the city, but with the COVID-19 situation in constant development, nothing is for certain. 

4) What have you learned about yourself since the COVID-19 closures?

Through the COVID-19 closures, I have learned that I will not let my circumstances weigh me down, that my dreams are brighter than whatever darkness shrouds the world, and that nothing can stand in the way of me chasing what I want.  

5) What is your passion?

My passion is filmmaking, and I would never want to do anything else in the world. I feel that it’s my purpose. 

6) Have you discovered a new passion in light of social distancing?

I have not discovered a new passion, but instead, I took the chance to build on my current one. Quarantine gave me something that was constantly slipping and running away from me with the speed of light: time. I capitalized on this opportunity and wrote a screenplay for an idea I had a week prior to the closures. 

7) What are your hopes for the future?

I hope that in the future we chase our dreams with renewed fervor; we never know when we will have put them on hold. 

8) Is there anything else you’d like us to know about you?

I try to make use of the time I am given by focusing on things I would normally be forced to ignore or put on the back burner due to a lack of time. Every day I am making myself better and making strides towards my dreams -- nothing can stop me. 

9) What are you most proud of about your school experience/best memory?

My proudest moment was showing Winter in Paradise, a short film my group made, to the rest of the Academy class. Seeing the pride and excitement on the faces of my group mates through the lens of our hard work was an incredible moment.