Elkhorn Valley Senior Given Chance To Be ‘Young American’

Senior year is a very important year for soon-to-be-graduates. And there are a lot of major decisions for the teenagers to make  about their futures.

Shortly, Elkhorn Valley senior Elizabeth Osborn will finalize a huge decision: whether she will go to nursing school or join the Young Americans in California.

“It’s a group that travels around the world influencing kids, teaching them music,” Osborn explained.  “They teach these kids a show and they perform it at the end. It’s seriously just a miracle.”

In 1962, the Young Americans performance group was founded to reflect a positive and honest image of our nation’s youth through music and dance. Today, 15-24 year olds tour to promote educational initiatives and theatrical performances.

“The first time I did it (a Young Americans workshop) was in fifth grade, and I was totally in love with it. So every year I expected it would be like that, like overwhelming,” Osborn explained. “You feel so free and it’s the most beautiful thing.  You can expect to feel at home.”

Osborn has been involved in several activities at Elkhorn Valley including choir, show choir, band, jazz band, and has served as the drum major of the marching and pep band.  

She has always had passion for music and she never hid her love for it.

“We used to sit on my roof at night and I would just sing to her, for hours and hours,” Osborn said as she reminisced about her best friend and herself. “I just sang all the time. I was trying to dance all the time. I was always in peoples faces singing and singing.”

Osborn attended every Young American workshop in the area that she could. She was even awarded a scholarship to go to one of the workshops this past summer.

“I went to Norfolk, I went to Fremont, I went to Tilden, I went to O’Neill,” she explained.  “And then this last workshop I did I got accepted for a $400 scholarship to attend their summer program in Fremont. So I was awarded that out of everybody and that was amazing.”

Since the first camp, Osborn knew Young Americans was something she wanted to do. 

When given the chance to audition to join Young Americans, Osborn jumped at the chance. 

“After one of the shows, you actually go up to a room, and they’ll have you sing for 45 seconds,” she described.  “And I think throughout the three days, they are just watching your personality and watching how you interact with them.”

Osborn did not hear whether or not she got in until weeks after she originally was supposed to thanks to an email issue. But when the results finally arrived, she made the cut.

“When I got accepted it was overwhelming,” she said. “It was honestly the best thing ever. I’ve always wanted to be a part of them, something so beautiful and big. And now that I am accepted it doesn’t even really seem real right now.”

Osborn said that because she found out about her acceptance late, she started applying to nursing school. Now that she has options, she is torn about her future.

“I’m definitely going to make my deposit on the Young Americans just to secure a spot. But if I get accepted into the nursing program then it will be a little more difficult, but if I don’t get accepted into the nursing program then there is probably going to be a one way ticket.”

Even though her future has two possible options, Osborn says one thing is certain.

​“Definitely stay involved with music as much as I can,” she said. 

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