Forever chasing positivity, Olivia Dewald-Davis cherishes change and welcomes memories


With the turmoil and uncertainty of living through a global crisis, a new school year is likely to stir up more nerves than ever before. But for junior Olivia Dewald-Davis, entering her third year of high school isn’t something to be scared of but rather something to embrace. 

Olivia has used her high school years to find herself, her people, and her passions. Despite the tumultuous journey that high school is, she is holding her head up high—ready for the challenges and excitement that a new year brings. 

For Olivia, high school has been a metamorphic experience, as each new year brings changes to her life.

“Freshman Olivia was a lot more hyper and ready to get into stuff and do anything,” Olivia said. “Now, I’m kind of the same way, but I’m interested in different things. [It’s] a good change—both are fine. I don’t think there’s a bad Olivia in there. Life just changes.”

Olivia’s acceptance of newness and change is rooted in her love for meeting new people. As someone whose friendly nature is constantly on display, she never backs down from a chance to meet a new friend. 

She describes the best part of her day as the moment when a new person enters her sphere.

“If somebody I don’t normally talk to is like, ‘Oh, hey Olivia, you look good today,’ or ‘How are you?’ [it makes my day],” Olivia said. “I think it’s fun because it’s somebody new to talk to. I get to look in on their life, and I like to learn about other people.”

With her commitment to meeting people and looking to the future, Olivia’s mindset is, without a doubt, the definition of positivity.

And she’s absolutely aware of this. 

“I’m a positive person,” Olivia said. “I don’t like to look at things and just walk into it and be like, ‘Oh, I don’t like that.’ I like to [think], ‘Oh, what’s good about this?’ I’m definitely cup half-full. I don’t see the point in spreading negativity if there’s not a reason.”

As a self-proclaimed people person, Olivia’s fierce personality and positivity have allowed her the chance to make strong bonds with people and create lasting friendships. Though people often come and go in life, Olivia has had a handful who have always been by her side.

This select group of people ranges from those she sees at home, those she sees at school, and those she sees everywhere in between.

“My friends and family [have been constants],” Olivia said. “I have a lot of nights with my friends where we’re hanging out, and [we’ll] start laughing, and I’m like, ‘Wow, I’m happy these people are in my life.’ My friends are so random. My family has been there [for me, too]; I know some people don’t have as supportive family members as I have. Every person in my life brings a different contribution. It’s funny to think about all the people that I have, and I’m so grateful for them. I know that they’re there for me through everything.”

With her appreciative attitude toward her friends and family, Olivia reciprocates friendliness to all those who show it to her. She does this most commonly through laughs. When she’s with her three best friends, there are always plenty of smiles to go around.

“I would say I’m definitely more of a comic relief [in my friend group],” Olivia said. “I would be the person, if somebody’s crying, to crack a joke. I definitely would be that person. I think I’m ‘the funny one’ if [someone] needs it.”

On top of being the comedian in her friend group, Olivia has a close bond with her family as well. Her retelling of one of her best days ever reaffirms how tight-knit her family is, for the story includes an integral role being played by none other than her mom.

“A really big band in my family is Pearl Jam—we absolutely love Pearl Jam,” Olivia said. “My mom and I went to Italy for a summer trip a couple of years ago, and we basically went to Italy just to see them perform. At the concert, there were a ton of foreign people that I didn’t know around me, and we had to wait four hours in the heat, so I was lowkey not having it.”

Even though the story gets off to a rocky start, Olivia continues the storytelling with a bright smile on her face.

It’s funny to think about all the people that I have, and I’m so grateful for them. I know that they’re there for me through everything.”

— Olivia Dewald-Davis

“But, when they started the show, it was a huge moment because I’ve been listening to them since I was literally in the womb,” Olivia said with a laugh. “I heard the intro to one of my favorite songs, and I started tearing up. It was so memorable, and it was definitely one of the best concerts I’ve ever been to.”

Olivia makes memories everywhere she goes. No matter if she’s with her best friends, her family, or entering a new situation by herself, she always knows how to turn any situation into an event she’ll remember forever. 

No moment of time is immune to Olivia’s kindness and charm—really, no situation at all. Despite the stereotype that work can never be fun, Olivia finds a reason to go to her job every day, and it doesn’t revolve around a paycheck.

“I love my work,” Olivia said. “I know it’s crazy—I actually enjoy work. I work at Sentinel Pointe Retirement Community, and I’ve talked to quite a few of the elders there, and I’ve built really good relationships with them. I’ve definitely heard a lot of interesting stories that I wouldn’t have heard if I didn’t talk to them.” 

At the end of the day, Olivia is grateful for the friends, family, and memories she has, and she’s just as thankful for her positive personality and openness to anything that made her the person she is today.

“I feel like if you ask any of my friends, like how would you explain Olivia? They would definitely say outgoing,” Olivia said. “I feel like that fits me a lot. If somebody else has something they want to do and I’ve never done it before, I’m not going to be like, ‘Oh, I don’t know.’ I’ll just be like, ‘Oh, let’s go for it, for sure. Let’s do it.’ I hope I’m always like that because it’s more fun to go for stuff than it is to stay in your comfort zone.”