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Isabelle Kizans


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My name is Isabelle, I'm a passionate, resilient, hard-working, optimistic dreamer with a vision for Space innovation and discovery! I knew from the moment I started my first job when I was fourteen years old at the Oregon Observatory, I was going to be a part of something special. It is a big duty and huge responsibility to be a part of the capstone that makes a mark in exploring the history of space and its phenomena. The mysteries the universe holds, and the stars guiding the way, are set within the grasp for passionate individuals like me to delve into and reveal.


Redmond Proficiency Academy

High School
2020 - 2024


  • Desired degree level:

    Doctoral degree program (PhD, MD, JD, etc.)

  • Majors of interest:

    • Astronomy and Astrophysics
    • Physics and Astronomy
    • Aerospace, Aeronautical, and Astronautical/Space Engineering
  • Not planning to go to medical school
  • Career

    • Dream career field:


    • Dream career goals:

      Research or Teaching

    • Telescope Manager

      Sunriver Nature Center & Observatory
      2020 – Present4 years



    2020 – 20222 years


    • Redmond Proficiency Academy Music Lab/Songwriting

      2022 – 2023
    • Redmond Proficiency Academy Rock Band

      Performance Art
      2024 – Present
    • Redmond Proficiency Academy Herd of Funk/Jazz Band

      Performance Art
      2021 – Present

    Public services

    • Volunteering

      Redmond Proficiency Academy Middle School - Robotics Class — Co-taught and led the class in developing lego robots, programming, using sensors, and using teamwork to compete in the First Lego League Challenge.
      2022 – Present
    • Advocacy

      First Tech Challenge Robotics — Head Programmer
      2022 – Present
    • Volunteering

      Boy Scouts of America Troop 8101 — Senior Patrol Leader, Troop Guide, Scribe, Historian, Outdoor Ethics Guide.
      2019 – 2023
    • Volunteering

      Embers Wildflower Animal Sanctuary — Feeding, exercising, cleaning, and socializing bunnies.
      2019 – Present
    • Volunteering

      Harmony Farm Sanctuary — Caretaker for 140+ animals
      2023 – Present

    Future Interests





    Kris Lewis Memorial Scholarship
    Growing up in a rural area, finding opportunities to get involved with was always a struggle considering I didn't have much access to leaders. Because of this, I became a leader in my community and aspired to create those opportunities. In February of 2019, I co-founded the first all female Boy Scouts Troop in Central Oregon. Growing up with an older brother who was always involved with Boy Scouts, community service, and outdoor activities; I became fascinated with all that this program has to offer and wanted to develop something for women like me to participate in. When women were officially allowed in Boy Scouts programs, I developed Troop 8101 of Central Oregon alongside two other ladies whose brothers were also involved in Boy Scouts and also had that passion. As the years went by, I climbed ranks in my troop and had the opportunity to get involved in numerous different community service activities, volunteer at a variety of organizations, get involved with the community and host events, as well as grow our Troop to now well over 30 members. Whether it was through planning a camping trip to Crater Lake National Park, hosting a booth at my community's Earth Day event, or placing flags around town on Veteran's day, I have grown as an individual and developed skills to further my personal growth. Through Troop 8101, I also had numerous opportunities to volunteer at organizations that were important to me, and that began to foster my passion for animal activism. I originally introduced my troop to Donna's Second Chance Bird Rescue, a parrot rescue and adoption center located just outside of Bend. This was a chance for me to offer opportunities for my troop to get involved with, whilst also engaging in something that is important to me. This inspired other members of my troop to research ways to get involved in our community, which led to our next volunteer organization: Ember's Wildflower Animal Sanctuary. A facility that rescues, rehabilitates, and re-homes bunnies. It was a wonderful experience for our troop members, and we left a lasting impact. We were invited back by the owner multiple times to help with maintenance and building enclosures. I greatly enjoyed this opportunity, it taught me a lot about care-taking and how doing something important to you has a positive impact on the community. Although Troop 8101 is now exploring many new ways to engage in the community, I still consistently volunteer at Ember's almost every week. It's a healing process for me to care for animals, and leaves a positive feeling for the rest of the day. This motivated me to continue looking for opportunities where I could do something important for my community, and find peace and healing while doing it. That led me to: Harmony Farm Sanctuary located in Sisters, Oregon. A non-profit organization dedicated to rescuing and rehabilitating injured, neglected, and homeless farm animals. Their focus is to promote a more compassionate and caring environment for animals, filled with equality and sustainability. Each Friday evening, I care for more than 140+ animals at the farm, my tasks include: feeding, exercising, cleaning, and providing gentle and tender care to each and every animal staying there. I am sincerely grateful for the founder Robine, and all that she has taught me there. Through my work at the farm, I developed a more worldly view and reflected on my place in the world alongside animals. This shaped my goals by empowering me to stand up for animal rights, and educate my community on a sustainable food system, free from animal cruelty.
    Julie Adams Memorial Scholarship – Women in STEM
    It was on my 14th birthday that my parents unexpectedly surprised me with a trip to the Sunriver Nature Center and Observatory located in Oregon. An educational facility I had visited numerous times since I was a child and home to the largest facility with public viewing telescopes, only 30 minutes away from my house. However, something about this specific night that I visited stood out more than the rest of the times I had visited in the past. This day marked the beginning of finding my purpose and what I was going to do with my life, and kick-started my passion for the STEM field and what I would pursue in college and for the rest of my life. Although Oregon is a dark sky zone, I had never ever seen so many stars illuminating the darkness around me. I was astounded by everything the staff members told me about the planets and their distances, nebulae and the creation of stars, nearby galaxies that could host the potential for life, and the prettiest constellations and history behind them. The absolute passion that fills their eyes to talk about these things really spoke to me, I was happy to simply listen to everything they had to share. And four years later, I still hold so much gratitude for that night and the exposure I got to Astronomy. I had volunteered for a few months since that day and quickly obtained a job as a Telescope Manager, working under numerous different astronomers, astrophysicists, college professors, and researchers. Through my four years working at the Oregon Observatory in Sunriver, I have developed such a unique perspective of the world and what the study of the stars has to show the world. Looking through just the scope of the telescope, you have the ability to look at a time capsule of all that has ever existed, and all that will continue to exist long after we are gone. The stars we see above us today are the same stars shining upon Earth millions of years ago, the moonlight that illuminated the forests for the dinosaurs in the Jurassic period is still lighting up the Oregon forests today, and the specimens found on Mars through a rover are proof of evolution outside of Earth and what life could look like beyond our solar system. This journey of studying space has not only fascinated me, but gave me a purpose in life. To see all that the universe has to offer, and unlock the mysteries beyond through research, education, and technological advancements. I am one of the lucky few who knows exactly what I'm meant to do here on Earth, and how my degree in Astronomy and Astrobiology will structure my life and the advancements in space innovation I will contribute to. Since then, I have made a point to get more involved in STEM by joining my high school's FTC Robotics team, and compete for two years making it to the Oregon State Championship each time. Alongside taking classes that will support my STEM journey in college like AP Computer Science Principles, Introduction to Astronomy, Physics, and Chemistry, I've also made a point to be a leader in my local community and support young women getting involved in STEM. One year ago, our high school's FTC Robotics team started an outreach program at our local middle school, where we would teach and tutor a middle school Robotics class. This year, I have taken over that program and created four teams to compete in this season's First Lego League Challenge. All four of my teams had earned prestigious awards, and one team made it to the State Championship! This was always a crucial mission to carry on for our community, and also personally really important to me. Growing up, robotics was always a "boy sport" and I never had leaders who looked like me to look up to. Even on my high school FTC Robotics team, I am one of two women on the team. Peer mentors bring a different approach to teaching, and a motivational and empowering perspective to the class compared to a teacher. We've had great success with this program throughout the years we've hosted it, and empowered more women to get involved within the STEM field which is such a special part of this to me. On top of that, I've also brought on two more female members onto our high school FTC team and personally tutored and taught them basic coding and programming. Although I graduate in just a few months, I couldn't feel more proud of what I've been able to accomplish these past few years and more importantly, the lasting impact it will have. By setting aside time to personally teach these new two members, I can feel them becoming more confident and empowered, unafraid to use their voice and contribute to the team. I have also put in place three new members who will continue the program at the middle school, and bring their own unique teaching styles and perspectives to the class. I truly all owe this to the wonderful community I've worked with at the Oregon Observatory, because without their support and full blown confidence in me, I would've never never had the courage to continue to pursue Astronomy and become a leader in my local community. And as I move forward with my college career, I am confident that my passion for Astronomy will continue to grow as I become a part of the leading generation in space innovation and technology, and pave the path for women in STEM alongside me.
    Nick Lindblad Memorial Scholarship
    From the first time my fingers plucked the steel strings of my double bass, to the tapping of piano keys, when I strummed a guitar for the first time, and wrote and performed a song for the person I was in love with, music changed my life forever. I am incredibly grateful to live in such a supportive community that encourages students to get involved in music, and specifically a school that provides that access. Throughout high school, I have taken advantage of the great resources my school has to offer and developed experience that will support me in my future music career. I have been playing the double bass for seven years now, and participated in a local music school's jazz band, as well as my school's jazz band. Classical and Jazz were the first genres I was exposed to, and I quickly fell in love with the beauty and elegance of them. Which is why in the following year, I decided to take a Music Lab course. With my teacher's professional experience, I was able to grasp a better understanding of music theory and composition. Not only had I discovered a passion for music, but I had discovered what a supportive and reassuring community looks like. I was drawn to music since I was a young girl, because music held the ability to express everything I felt and wanted to say, but couldn't. Music has a beautiful ability to connect people everywhere, regardless of language, race, gender, ethnicity, etc. While I composed multiple songs through this course, I worked with a classmate to develop a piano part and eventually, with lots of rewriting and practice, we were able to use our school's recording studio and produce this song. The desire of love filling every inch of my body was turned into piano keys and bass rifts, everything I had felt, was expressed in the words of music. The songwriting process, the collaboration, the recording process, it all felt ethereal. Music had encapsulated my life, and placed an emphasis on what was important to me. My Senior year, I had a deep desire to continue to grow my knowledge and learn more about the world of music that fascinated me. I auditioned for my school's Rock Band with the intention to try out a new genre of music and expand my variety, and I received the position of Lead Bass. Going from classical music on the double bass with proper posture and a bow, to fully rocking out with amp's turned up loud and destroying my fingers on my bass guitar strings was a huge change, but something I will never regret. Before I had discovered music, I let the term 'introvert' define me. I felt that 'shyness' and 'loneliness' were the only terms that made up who I was. Through the access and resources I had to get involved in music, I was able to see that there are so many other ways I can express myself and find my community without words. The beauty of being a quiet person, is that I found a gift for writing and poetically developing lyrics. And I found that the feeling of loneliness could be filled with the great love songs of Frank Sinatra, and Elton John. Peace could be found both within a quiet room and a piano, or blasting rock and roll. Music can mean so many different things and can be so diverse, which is why it's such a blessing to have. It's the one thing that we all have in common, music serves a purpose for everyone.
    Joieful Connections Scholarship
    One of the hardest things I have to hear in my daily life is the constant misuse of the term 'OCD' and how minimized a mental health disorder it has become. Obsessive-Compulsive-Disorder is a disorder in which a person experiences uncontrollable intrusive thoughts, leading to engagement in repetitive compulsive behaviors. Without proper help and treatment, this long lasting disorder can be incredibly debilitating to an individual. This is the exact challenge I have faced for the past three years of my life. Although a mental health issue, this disorder has significantly impacted my life, distorted my versions of reality, prevented me from social engagement, and placed a barrier on how I attend to my daily tasks. Because of this, I have fought for proper treatment, accommodations, and supportive communities so that I may learn to live with this disorder, not let it live through me. I'm grateful to have connected with my Universities Disability Resource Center and be provided with specific accommodations so that while I attend university and focus on my studies, I have the tools and space to prevent flare ups and relapses. This will make a huge difference in my life as a student, allowing me to pursue whatever comes into my path without OCD stopping me! I am an Astronomy major, and am studying at one of the world's best universities for space science and space programs. Since I obtained my first job at fourteen years old at the Oregon Observatory in Sunriver, Oregon, I knew I had discovered a real purpose and passion. Through my four years working there under the supervision of professionals, Astrophysicists, and college professors, I have developed a wide range of knowledge in the field of space and a deep interest in unlocking the mysteries that await us. Under a sky full of stars is where I feel most at home, I can't imagine putting my time and effort into researching and obtaining a degree in anything else. At a time where space exploration and technology is at it's peak, industries are desperately looking for individuals like me who have a strong passion for new technological development, and sturdy knowledge in the sciences. I specifically plan to take a specialty in Astrobiology, which is the study of the evolution, origins of life, and future of life within the universe. As an Astrobiologist, I would be gaining experience in earthly processes and how they can relate to processes on other planets and solar systems. Exploring Exoplanets will just be the beginning of my research, as I evaluate how DNA processes and life can develop on other worlds, and the proper necessities for creating it. After accomplishing this life-long dream, I have a wide range of options available to me. Currently, I'm incredibly passionate about research and working with industries like NASA to get my hands on a microscope and dive into the wealth of knowledge of microorganisms and their part in forming in the universe and outside of Earth. I aim to be a leader in the new development of space exploration technology, and provide scientific background to assist future missions to Mars, the Moon, and beyond! Through my work at the Oregon Observatory, I also have inspiration to share this knowledge with others. Promoting the importance of space exploration is a value I hold close to my heart, through education I can accomplish that goal and garner more interest in the world above us. Although OCD has attempted to hold me back, the stars in my eyes never fade, and with your help, they never will.