Ms. Camilla Bergstrom
John Adams Academy Lincoln Online
Download essay here
Camilla Bergstrom Scholarship
John Adams Academy Senior 2023
A Journey Like No Other
Receiving a classical liberty-based education has changed my view on the world around me and has taught me the fundamental concepts to succeed in life; those are the pursuit for truth, wisdom, and virtue, and through it all, prioritizing the embodiment of servant-leadership. Classical form of education carries with it the power to transform lives through the study of classics. Before attending John Adams Academy, I had the opportunity to attend a local public high school. The lack of formality and support discouraged me and made me believe that education has no important role in my life. I didn’t understand how any of the knowledge that was provided to me in my classes could help me in my future endeavors. I also greatly disliked the format of my learning. In all of my classes, the educator taught, and I had to listen. To me, it felt like I had very little power over my own learning. Of course, I had the ability to ask questions but never to truly interact with the subjects or my peers. All this led me to believe that I do not want to receive any upper education. This mentality, however, changed dramatically. During the pandemic, my parents encouraged me to attend the newly built high school, John Adams Academy Lincoln. I was skeptical, like any other teenager, when they were told that they will have to wear the uniform. Nevertheless, after learning more about the school, I didn’t see what I had to lose. Being a skeptic of any education, I attended my first class with a similar mentality. Shockingly, I found my teachers to be engaging. Instead of answering my questions regarding the text, teachers challenged me to interpret the text. Instead of teaching me about the characters in the books, they asked me to analyze them. Soon after, I found myself looking forward to my classes and being challenged. I would study hard and prepare to debate with my classmates. I noticed a drastic change in my grades and how much I cared about doing well. Yet, that was not all. I became extremely passionate about the motto of the school: “Restoring America’s Heritage by Developing Servant Leaders”. I started to use my studies from my philosophy class and apply the lessons learned to my everyday life. I learned that all the great men in history, since ancient times, succeeded when they used their wisdom to follow the truth through virtuous actions. I also learned that many failed because they only relied on one of the great ideas (which are truth, wisdom, and virtue). These great ideas are the core aspects of a scholar at John Adams Academy. The pursuit of truth is a lifelong journey that is and will lead me to be a better citizen. Wisdom is also acquired over time. It has improved my self-governance and ability to decide in challenging situations. Additionally, it is wisdom and truth that promote a strong, virtuous character. Thus, with the help of my classical education, I concluded that to be a good citizen and a servant-leader, I should strive to follow all three great ideas. John Adams Academy has changed my mentality on education, politics, and what a good life looks like. Aside from growing intellectually, John Adams Academy has impacted my moral compass and allowed me to see a new purpose for my existence.
My life has been significantly transformed because of my studies at John Adams Academy. As of today, I have committed to pursuing higher education and making a difference in the world only due to the curriculum and the support from my mentors at John Adams Academy. I have studied hard and it paid off, I was accepted to a top University in the nation: University of California Berkeley. I have also pursued serving opportunities by traveling on mission trips. For example, last month, I went on a trip to Mexico to serve the local community of Mexicali. I believe with the knowledge I was given, I have been transformed as an individual. I have a passion for knowledge and what it can allow me to accomplish. I’m grateful for John Adams Academy and everything my mentors have taught and challenged me on. Go, Patriots!