Alumni Profile: Daniel Volovets
How long were you homeschooled through Seton, and what did you like about the experience?
I was homeschooled all my life, but I started Seton in 9th grade and continued all the way to high school graduation.
Being at Seton gave me a lot of flexibility to focus on my academic interests, pursue a side-career as a classical guitarist, and spend more time with family and friends!
I am also very grateful to Seton for their academically-rigorous program; it really set me on the right track for college!
Where did you go to college, and what is your degree?
I went to the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, MN and graduated with a B.S. in Neuroscience.
How did your Seton education help you navigate the college experience?
The program at Seton is very rigorous, which I came to appreciate when I started taking college classes through the University of Minnesota when I was in 11th grade.
Seton definitely prepared me for the pre-med track not only academically, but also in terms of managing my time well.
Throughout college, I used the time management skills I developed while at Seton to balance college coursework with careers as a guitar performer and teacher, as well as extra-curricular activities such as research in the fields of organic chemistry, biology, and endocrinology, taking statistics and chemistry classes, volunteering at a local hospice, and a job as a medical transcriptionist.
And, of course, I also found time to be with family and friends!
What are you doing now?
I just finished my first year at the University of Minnesota Medical School.
In my free time, I perform classical, flamenco, Brazilian, and jazz music at venues throughout the Minneapolis/St. Paul area.
I also enjoy recording and have released two albums in the past year — an instrumental album called “Wistful Tendrils,” best described as jazz-influenced Renaissance music with a fairy tale feel (featuring my multi-instrumentalist brother, Adrian Volovets, also a fellow Seton student!), and a just-released album of Russian music called “Echoes of Love,” recorded in collaboration with my mother, vocalist Nataliya Ishkova.
I also have 10 guitar students; teaching is one of my greatest passions!
What gives you passion or motivation in your current occupation?
I am most interested in the field of psychiatry, which is fascinating in and of itself but is also in the midst of a severe shortage of providers — countless people are affected by mental illness and are not receiving the help and care they need.
My hope is to stay in the Minneapolis area and work with under-served populations. I also plan to incorporate music into my future psychiatric practice; I just started an organization called RITHM (Rehabilitation Initiative Through Music), which seeks to incorporate music activities at local mental health clinics.
Ultimately, I hope that my future clinical work will increase awareness of mental illness, work toward eliminating severely damaging stigma, and help those in need!
Any advice for current Seton High-Schoolers?
If you are ever discouraged by the workload or find yourself losing sight of the bigger picture, remind yourself that sticking with things now will help you immensely in college and beyond.
Don’t be afraid to dream big, and do all you can to make that dream a reality!
Daniel’s website is danielvolovets.com, where you can listen to previews of his 6 albums, and watch videos of him performing.