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Emma Seeber Builds Herself a Future

Sam Noonan, Graphic Design

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Woodworking, building your own furniture, and working on similar projects can be a great learning experience for everyone, and having the ability to make something you use everyday is something to take great pride in. Senior Emma Seeber builds anything from furniture in her home to shelves that she uses herself, and has been doing so throughout her time in high school.

Emma’s interest in woodworking started in 8th grade, when she first took the class. She originally thought that the class was stupid and a “blowoff class” but quickly fell in love with it, and she says she never wants to stop doing what she’s doing. Emma usually makes things for other people and not herself, but she will make something for herself if she needs it. She enjoys having the ability to just make something that she wants to, whenever she wants. Due to Emma taking the “Gone Boarding” class, she also has the opportunity to make whatever she needs for various boardsports.

“I’m really fortunate that I was able to learn how to [do what I’m doing] and that we have this type of program at our school, where people can learn this,” she said.

Much of what Emma has made fills her house, and many of her projects are for her family. She has made a lazy susan, a bench, cutting boards, and is making both a paddleboard and headboard. She feels that being able to do what she does is very valuable life skill, and that anyone who is interested in it should go ahead and try.

Emma sees her woodworking as a possible career or something to do on the side, and even if she doesn’t, she will continue to spend time in a woodshop. Her creative process usually includes finding ideas for projects online, and putting her own twist on it. By adding her own personal touch to whatever she builds, she is able to make these projects her own.

“I just like the fact that I’m able to make stuff that was just a piece of wood into something that you could use everyday, or where you could say ‘oh, I made that.’ I just think that’s really cool,” Emma said.

Emma has a strong bond with woodshop teacher Robert Miedema, and says that he has been a great teacher throughout her time in the class. Even when she has had semesters without the class, Emma would continue to visit the woodshop and work on her own personal projects. She is interested in art education and wants to be able to use a woodshop during college.

“Emma has come in here with a ton of excitement to build projects for other people, she loves to build stuff for her mom and her family,” Miedema said. “It’s not always about what she wants, it’s about building things for other people and I really appreciate that.”

Emma has interest in a job relating to woodworking or construction, and she has the opportunity to see how she would like a job at Christman, a construction company in downtown GR. This job would consist of her overseeing all of the projects that are going on, and Emma is interested in this; however, she is not sure if she will like it, or want to pursue a job similar to this.

Woodworking opens up a world of opportunities for Emma, and it has changed her life and given her something to stay passionate about. It has provided her with a creative outlet, a way to express herself, and a way to build many things she might need – It gives her a possible career, and valuable experience.

“She’s not afraid of a bigger challenge, even if she doesn’t know how she’s going to get it done. She always tries to do it the best she can,” said Miedema.

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