September 2022 Student of the Month

Joseph Achen

Royalton High School is proud to announce that Joseph Achen was selected as Student of the Month for September. Joseph is the son of Craig and Cindy. Joseph says his family has had a very big impact on his life, “Family is a huge part of my life especially since I have 10 siblings. Me, being the youngest of eleven has definitely come with downsides like being babied all the time. However, the advantages of being the youngest absolutely outweigh the disadvantages. These advantages include being able to learn from my older siblings and watch them make mistakes and grow. This has allowed me to not make those same mistakes myself. Furthermore, I know how to deal with situations and overcome obstacles in my life more efficiently because of them. My family is my support system. I know that if I have difficulties with anything, they will be there for me and offer me helpful advice. They have always encouraged me to work hard and to always do my best in everything I do. Anytime spent with my family is a good time and I will always cherish the slim moments that we can all share together. I would not be the person I am today without them.”


Joseph is involved in a wide variety of activities in school. These activities include: FFA, basketball, BPA and Minnesota Honor Society. Joseph believes all of these activities have taught him a lot but especially FFA, “One thing that I have learned through all of these activities is the importance of being able to lead and work in a team. While I love being a part of all of these things, FFA is my favorite. FFA has shaped me into the person I am today. I have made so many friends, memories, relationships, connections, and skills that will propel me in my future plans. FFA allows me to be a leader and advocate in the agriculture community. I have held numerous leadership positions in FFA which include President of the Royalton Chapter, as well as Treasurer on the Region II officer team. FFA has taken me so many places that I could have never imagined. Moreover, FFA gives me the opportunity to use my role as a leader to be an advocate for agriculture. Since joining FFA, I can say that I am a much more confident, organized, and prepared person. Lastly, FFA has taken a shy kid and grown him to being able to have conversations with anybody and publicly speak in front of people.”


When it comes to his classes Joseph says one of his favorite classes is Financial Accounting. “My favorite class is Financial Accounting taught by Ms. Burg. While I normally am not interested in these types of classes, I have made an exception to this class. I say this because in this class it is very open ended. We learn so much about all the background work that takes place in owning a business. This is my favorite class because we have very collaborative discussions where everyone is involved and asking questions. I walk out of this class, and my brain hurts because of all the new information I learn (which I enjoy).” As for a favorite teacher in high school Joseph really enjoyed Math teacher Mr. Silbernick and Agriculture Teacher Mr. Goldade. “My favorite teachers are Mr. Goldade and Mr. Silbernick. These two teachers are always there for me and are tremendously helpful in my high school experience. Mr. Goldade is my FFA advisor and Ag Teacher. He is one of my favorite teachers because he is always full of energy. Additionally, he hauls me to all my FFA events, which I love, and provides me with some of the best advice in and out of the classroom. Mr. Silbernick is truly great at his job. Whenever I walked into his class, I knew that I would learn something and thoroughly understand the content. Also, I could always have a conversation with him about anything school or outside of school related and feel comfortable talking with him. It was sad when I heard he was leaving.”


As for activities Joseph is involved with outside of school, like at school there are many. Some of them that he is involved in 4-H, his church youth group, and the National Milking Shorthorn Junior Society (MSJS). “In 4-H, I exhibit dairy cattle and I am a head camp counselor during the summer. I love showing my Milking Shorthorns at the county/state fair, and numerous national shows. Additionally, being a camp counselor gives me the opportunity to work with kids and youth in my county. This is something that I really enjoy. Faith is a big part of my life. I enjoy being a part of the youth group because while we are focused on faith, we are also having so much fun at the same time. On Wednesday nights I look forward to spending time in this group and exploring my faith. Finally, I am the vice president of the MSJS. This is a society specifically revolving around the youth who have a passion for Milking Shorthorn Cattle. I enjoy being connected with the members of this society and hope to stay connected.”


Joseph’s favorite memory in high school was at the State FFA Convention in St. Paul, “My favorite high school memory took place in St. Paul at the State FFA Convention. Here was where I participated in the Milk Quality event along with two other Royalton Teammates (Callie Vannurden & Alivia Pyka). At the convention I placed 2nd overall behind my own teammate, Alivia Pyka who took 1st place. Also, our team took 1st place overall and are advancing to nationals in  Indianapolis, IN this October. This experience was so fulfilling. To see all our hard work, pay off was so satisfying and the feeling of being called first place is unexplainable. I am honored to have this experience and share it with my closest friends.” Along with his favorite memory in high school, Joseph also mentions how basketball has also stood out for him, “The best activity that I am involved in is basketball. I truly have a passion for this game that is unmatched to anything else in my life. When I am playing basketball, it seems like I am truly living in the moment and all the worries in my head go away for a brief time. Additionally, it helps me stay in shape and spend time with friends.”

Next year Joseph plans on going to college, but has not decided yet where he will be going. He does hope to study Ag. Business and Ag. Communications, “I am interested in the Business side of agriculture and want to be able to understand the problems we face in agriculture and help farmers overcome these problems with modern solutions.”


As for his future plans after college Joseph believes his career is going to be very important, “Honestly, I am very uncertain where I will be in 10 years. I hope to have found a career that interests me and be doing something that I love and want to do every day. This is extremely important to me because I fear being unhappy and not being excited every day to pursue my passions and aspirations.”


Joseph’s advice for Freshmen was this. “My advice to Freshmen in High School would be to get involved. Try new things, find something you like and run with it! Jump in feet first and give your time to it. In doing this, you will stay busier which gives you less time to be stressed and feel anxiety about academics.”