We all have the power to tell our own stories.
Like everyone else, Iva Wilson has had moments of wondering how the world sees her and worrying what other people think. But then she found her purpose at a Christian summer camp, and now she lives her life by her favorite quote: “Do not let people tell you who you are. You tell them.” For Iva, this mantra is the key to her acceptance of herself and others. And while she’s learned to be okay with making mistakes, she’s also committed to learning from them and to growing from the experience. “Failing is never a reason to quit, and success will always come to those who never give up,” she says.
Iva puts that perseverance to work in every aspect of her life. It’s led to an impressive 5.1 GPA earned while taking every honor’s course available at her school. And it’s helped her secure multiple MVP and coaches awards in her sports—she competes in four of them, all at the varsity level. When she’s not busy studying for a test or a debate team competition, scoring points on the volleyball or basketball courts, or setting school records in discus and cheer, you can find Iva working hard to help others achieve their own personal goals. She volunteers her time to put on cheer camps for younger students and she coaches her church’s youth basketball team. As a leader of her schools’ chapter of Fellowship of Christian of Athletes, she is a resource for other students who need support to overcome any of the obstacles they face.
In the words of Iva’s dad, “You only get one life, one chance, and what you do with it is up to you.” Iva makes hers count not only by setting and reaching the highest standards for herself, but also by doing all she can to make those around her feel accepted, included, and important. Whether she’s rallying the student body to come out and support the athletic teams at her school, captaining her own teammates on the court, sharing her faith with her peers or with children in her community, or spending time visiting and doing crafts with the elderly residents of a local nursing home, she believes, “we can make everyone feel like someone.” By raising up those around her, she helps put greatness within everyone’s reach.
“Do not fear failure, but please be terrified of regret.”
~ Iva Wilson ~