Alex Koiv- FDR’s 2021 Valedictorian


Anton Doroshuk, Contributor

Being FDR’s valedictorian is an incredible accomplishment, but in the case of Alex Koiv, it was always about focus and hard work.

During 2020, one of the most challenging years for every student, things were a little more complicated. Due to this, Alex is proud that he was able to achieve the status of valedictorian. He was able to keep on top of his classwork, even with all of the online challenges. Alex does not like to brag about being awarded valedictorian; he wants to succeed and do his best. Of course, many challenges plagued students during 2020-2021. One of Alex’s challenges was doing all the work and not procrastinating. He learned to be more accepting of mistakes and failures. The biggest challenge of 2020 for Alex was the lack of in person assistance from teachers/counselors during Covid-19. The switch to online learning last spring made communicating difficult. The early challenges, caused by a sudden switch to online classes, led students to be more independent and reliant on themselves. Alex, like many students, focused on completing challenging tasks like applying for colleges. However, Alex Koiv took it upon himself to try new methods to find the best and optimal way to complete work. He passed on this information to other students and teachers. This can even be validated by his AP United States History teacher, Mr.Sullivan. According to Mr. Sullivan, “Alex’s insights proved incredibly valuable in structuring the review for the exam.” Mr. Sullivan said that Alex was constantly giving Mr. Sullivan meaningful feedback on what was and wasn’t translating to students during the review. It is a clear example of what makes Alex such an outstanding student. For Alex, challenges are temporary and can be overcome.

On the topic of succeeding, Alex emphasizes that every student should try to use every resource available. This includes seeking help from fellow students, or teachers, if they require it. The goal of reaching the top should not obscure how a student reaches their goal, but through studying or reflecting on their mistakes to better themselves. His goal was to enter a great university. He is proud to admit that he has accomplished this goal, as he is entering Cornell University this fall. He has decided to major in Computer Science at Cornell. However, Alex is still very conflicted on what he will minor in, as there are many different choices. In college, Alex would like to socialize with other people, including going to events, instead of only focusing on studying. He does not want to miss any opportunity or live with regret.

One of the biggest questions that Alex had to answer, during our interview, is how he would change the world. One major parts of the world he wants to change is the educational opportunities for learning different types of technology. Not necessarily on how to use it, but how it works and what is inside of it. As a person who used to live in Estonia, he has first-hand experience with this issue. He remarked on how E-Estonia, means Electronic Estonia, a leader in technology. However, he emphasizes that the technology in Estonia is not friendly towards people with more complex learning curves, like older/younger people. This frustrates Alex, and makes him focused on making technology more humanitarian and accessible to many different types of people.

Alex’s fondest memories at Franklin Delano Roosevelt High School were the interactions between the teachers and himself. He liked how he could interact with the teachers after-school and get to know them better, helping him realize that they are humans with lives of their own. Chatting with all kinds of teachers made him love them, and therefore, the school.

Alex Koiv being awarded Valedictorian made him a proud student, and FDR a better place. A student that is both attentive and caring, during hard times, is what makes our school so great. Rewarding Alex at the end of this year makes perfect sense. It shows that hardships and challenges can be overcome. Cornell is getting a remarkable man, and his impact on this school will be felt for years to come. FDR has helped make Alex a man of perseverance and true grit, as he was willing to test himself to succeed. Congratulations Alex!