DGN Omega

  • August 9Boys’ football: 2014 DGN graduate Vontae Diggs plays in first preseason game for NFL’s Washington Redskins

  • August 9Girls soccer: Loyola commit Abby Swanson leads NSA Shock (club team) to national title

  • July 31Boys' basketball: Senior PG Sema'j Henderson receives offer from North Dakota

This is the DGN Omega’s take on Humans of New York by Brandon Stanton. Different students and faculty at DGN will be featured to display their unique stories. 

Alison Hix

I went to Bolingbrook High School all three years and I’ve lived in Bolingbrook my whole life.  I recently moved to Woodridge over the summer. My dad had decided he wanted a smaller house, sense it’s just him and I. I’m almost done with school, so he will be living alone sometime soon. It takes a while to get to North every morning, but I really enjoy the school. The students and staff are very friendly. I’m pretty excited to graduate in December, it seems surreal to me. I’ve struggled a lot throughout my life and I guess I never thought I would make it this far. I’m very proud of myself, and if I can do this even sooner, I’ll be in awe. I think when I graduate, I’ll be able to move on to the next chapter in my life happily. I have such a great family who loves me and supports me as much as they can. They are sometimes surprised by my decisions, but they trust and respect me. I couldn’t ask for anything better.”

Lilija Kisjer

“There’s a lot of different experiences as an exchange student I would never see if I didn’t have this opportunity. I came to Illinois in August, but didn’t come to Downers Grove until the end of October. I think the most shocking thing that happened to me after coming to the U.S, was when I had to change my host family. Out of all of the different host families, sometimes it doesn’t work out. The host family I’m staying with now is my second host family, and I am happy I got the chance to stay with them. I will be staying here for the rest of the school year, and then return home at the end of June. My favorite thing about my experience here is being apart of the American culture from an inside perspective, and also to see the big country! I love traveling and am very fortunate to be able to do this. I really like the people at DGN, they’re very welcoming and have a lot of school spirit. We don’t have anything like that at home. It is very fun to experience.”

Nimit Zaveri

“Wherever they send me to train, August 22, I’ll be gone for four months. After I come back, I’m looking to start college and be a part of the Army part time. That way I can still pursue my career and be a part of the military at the same time.  If I get deployed or called out, I think that would be a really cool experience to have. I want to go into law enforcement. At one point, I met with one of the recruiters and they wanted me to come get some more information. I liked it and thought ‘you know what, this isn’t too bad.’ I wanted the training and experience it would give me, which would really help my career. The training they give me is going to be above and beyond for law enforcement. In our lifestyle, military training is not readily available for most people to have, including police. I’ll be trained by the military and by the police so I feel like that would really help my career, even if I decide to go federal and higher. My Grandpa’s been supportive of my decision the entire time, even when other family members haven’t. Him and my mom have always stood by me saying not to worry what other people think of me going into the military. He’s always given me good advice, and I’ve gone with it. “

 Grace Puc

“In 2011, I was involved in a really bad car accident. Doctors at Good Sam thought I would need brain surgery to relieve hemorrhaging that was building up behind my swollen eye and fractured skull so they transferred me to Loyola almost immediately. Surgery was scheduled for the end of the day and doctors came in every hour to pry open my eyelid and prod it with a tool to check the pressure. After the first couple of checks the pressure seemed to be climbing, despite treatment, and it was given that I would need the surgery. Before they did the last check that day, a friend of my parents brought them holy water she had gotten from a town in Europe called Medjugorje, where miracles are said to have happened. It was put on my eye and friends and family stood around my hospital bed and said a prayer. Twenty minutes later, when the doctor came in for the last check before surgery, the pressure on my brain had dropped an insane amount. Without any real medical explanation, the surgery on my brain was cancelled. A few years later, my dad took me to Medjugorje to “say thank you.” While there, a woman approached me and told me that something had compelled her to come over and talk with me. She asked my name and what had brought me there, and I shared my story. She asked if she could pray with me and took my hands and said a prayer. It was an incredibly moving experience, to say the least. My eyelid has never returned to its normal state after being so deformed around my swollen eye, but whenever I see it in a mirror or picture I’m reminded of this incredible miracle that happened to me.”

Christopher Nauss

“When I was working in New York, I was across the street from the World Trade Center when 9/11 happened. We evacuated our building, went downstairs and ended up a couple blocks south of the World Trade Center and watched the first tower fall.  There were clouds of dust that basically came over us.  We tried to go south because we were going to jump in the river and try to float toStaten Island or catch a ferry, but we ended up getting
detoured up through Chinatown and, eventually, found our way out of there.”

Eliza Graham

“I started roller derby last summer. Since derby is a full contact sport, I am not allowed to play on a team until I am 18 because the injuries can be really serious. So until then, I am training at this thing called Derby Lite at the Lombard roller rink. I love so many things about roller derby. I love the companionship of it, but my favorite part is when you have to learn a new skill and you start out so bad at it. You practice over and over again and probably fall a bunch, then you finally get it. It’s such a satisfying feeling.”

Nick Gervasio

“I was born in a city 45 minutes south of Toronto, Ontar
io. I had previously lived in Downers Grove, but I moved back to Canada when I was about eight. Then moved in with my Father in July of 2015. The biggest cultural difference [between the US and Canada] I would have to say would be the overall language differences from French being Canada’s second language to Spanish being the dominant second language [in the US]. [The thing I miss most about Canada] is friends, family and poutine, best thing in the world.”

If you would like to share your story on Humans of DGN please contact our Feature Editors Madison Venckus ([email protected]) or Sidney Lee ([email protected]).


The student news site of Downers Grove North High School