Duchesne seniors show their grit

Duchesne seniors show their grit

Seniors Ally Parra and Maggie Dowd have received the Heider Foundation Grit Scholarship to Creighton University.

This scholarship awards students who “have a high aptitude to succeed, but whose talents are not evident through the standard metrics used to qualify students for significant merit scholarships at Creighton University,” according to the university.

Q & A with Maggie Dowd (center in photo):

Q: How did you feel when you received this scholarship?

A: I was super excited to receive the Grit Scholarship. It was an honor to have been chosen.

Q: What do you hope to study in college?

A: I am planning to pursue a degree in education. My grade school teachers and my teachers at Duchesne have been an inspiration and certainly have shaped my educational goals.

Q: What do you hope to do after you are finished with college?

A: I would really like to work with people, especially kids, to inspire and hopefully fulfill their potential.

Q: How did your education at Duchesne prepare you for college?

A: Although I know college will be difficult, I feel Duchesne’s challenging curriculum has prepared me for Creighton University. Duchesne has helped me figure out how I learn and gave me the tools to succeed. I am thankful for all the teachers at Duchesne who have helped me throughout the years. I am especially appreciative of all of the help Mrs. Atherton has given me during my time at Duchesne. I would highly encourage any struggling students to reach out to her for guidance, she is amazing!

Duchesne senior Selected for U.S. Senate Youth Program

Duchesne senior Selected for U.S. Senate Youth Program

OMAHA — At a time when many high school students start to shift their focus away from high school to prepare for college, Clary Doyle has worked to make the most of her final year at Duchesne. She just made the honor roll, she participates in or leads numerous clubs, she’s also a member of the softball team and pitched a no-hitter this fall. Now, she is one of just two students selected to represent Nebraska at the prestigious U.S. Senate Youth Program. Oh, she’s also student body president.

A panel of education leaders selected Doyle for the Senate Youth Program after a lengthy application and interview process. They selected her based on her academic performance, leadership qualities, and interest in government.

“I feel very honored to have been selected to represent Nebraska in the USSYP. Having the opportunity to meet Senator Sasse, Senator Fischer, and a justice of the Supreme Court both astonishes and excites me beyond words,“ Doyle said.

Typically, students travel to Washington, D.C., to visit with members of congress however this year’s program will be totally virtual. Doyle and other students are scheduled to meet with the president, senators, a justice of the Supreme Court, high-ranking cabinet officials, and members of the national press. The award also includes a $10,000 college scholarship funded by the Hearst Foundation.

She hopes to pursue a legal career. Doyle says she and her classmates talk about what they’ll do to make the world a better place.

“It is my firm belief that Duchesne students change the world. I aspire to do this through the legal system and many of my peers constantly tell me of their ambitions to foster good in the world in other equally valuable areas,” Doyle said.

Dr. Laura Hickman, Duchesne Academy Principal, says Doyle works hard for her classmates, and students from all classes view her as a role model.

“Over her four years at Duchesne Clary has embraced and modeled our Sacred Heart goals. I’m confident she will use her leadership skills to make our community a better place,” Hickman said.

Duchesne students helping women in need

Duchesne students helping women in need

Students in the feminist club at Duchesne Academy of the Sacred Heart have been researching and studying the struggles women worldwide face when it comes to obtaining menstrual products. The more they learned, the more they felt the need to act.

“Though we learned about women all over the world, we decided on this project to help women in our community,” said club co-president Clary Doyle, A21.

Club members came together this week to design and create menstrual products to donate to local women’s shelters.

“We are learning facts about how many women are affected by not having access to menstrual products,” said club co-president Claire Helton, A21.

Low-income families and women in prisons are particularly disadvantaged because they don’t have the resources to get the products they need for their health, Helton said.

The club members say they continue to research women’s issues and plan ways to help local women.

Duchesne unveils new robotics lab

Duchesne unveils new robotics lab

Duchesne Academy has unveiled its new robotics lab which will enable students to easily collaborate on projects. The new room features areas to design, build and test their robots before competitions. Alumnae and RSCJ would hardly recognize the space on the third floor – because it used to be a bathroom before it was closed years ago.

Duchesne’s maintenance team had to remove old toilets, tubs, and pipes while they renovated the room. Not only did they remove old fixtures, they removed the old cement and tile floor so they could install new flooring on the original wood subfloor.

“This was a fun project to take on this summer. Our students are bright and great competitors and we were happy to build this new lab where they can work,” said Maintenance Director Chris Hession. 

The work began during the summer as was completed just in time for students to return to class in August.

“Our students are committed to being the best designers and programmers and seeing the school create a place for them to learn and work together to build robots has inspired them,” said Sarah Stratman, Robotics and Computer Science teacher.  

The team previously worked in a small area behind The Fitz.

Duchesne graduate receives prestigious Stamps Scholarship

Duchesne graduate receives prestigious Stamps Scholarship

Duchesne Academy Class of 2020 graduate Raleigh Kreis has earned an exclusive Stamps Scholarship. Kreis’ application was among those selected from a field of more than 263,000. The scholarship covers the cost of the recipient’s tuition and also provides additional funds they may use to advance their studies while an undergraduate. Fewer than one percent of applicants receive a Stamps Scholarship.

“I was flabbergasted when I got the phone call. It honestly felt like the end of Charlie in the Chocolate Factory. I was the girl who suddenly got everything she wanted: the chance to attend my dream school at no financial cost,” Kreis said.

Kreis, who achieved a perfect ACT score, will attend Tulane University and plans to study political economy and business. She says her interest in other cultures and countries grew while she was a student at Duchesne.

“I’m especially excited to investigate global trade relationships and how economic policy can affect people around the globe,” Kreis said.

She says Sacred Heart Network service trips taught her ways to help people and how to think about changing systems to help people.

“In the application and interview process to ultimately receive the Stamps Scholarship I drew on these invaluable experiences.”

Kreis received Duchesne’s Stuart Creativity Award during commencement July 30. She is the daughter of Kim and Andrew Kreis. Kim is a science teacher at Duchesne.

Penny and Roe Stamps created the scholarship program in 2006. It now includes 36 universities in the United States.

Duchesne students building relationships with Winnebago community

Duchesne students building relationships with Winnebago community

WINNEBAGO, Neb. (Duchesne Academy) – Students from Duchesne Academy of the Sacred Heart in Omaha say they’re already anticipating growing the school’s relationship with the community of Winnebago, Nebraska, following a service trip last week.

The group of eight students, chaperoned by Duchesne teachers Bridget Morton and Sarah Stratman, arrived in Winnebago on Wednesday, Feb. 12, and quickly went to work. St. Augustine School teaches children from the Winnebago and Omaha tribes. The girls spent each morning eating and exercising with students at St. Augustine school before splitting up to help teachers in their classrooms.

“We were moved by the generosity of the students and their openness to love. They immediately accepted us and welcomed us into their community,” one student said about her time serving in the classroom.

Friday, the students worked in Macy, NE, to clean Our Lady of Fatima Church with two of the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament who work there. Our Lady of Fatima is one of four parishes that make up the St. Augustine Indian Mission. St. Katherine Drexel founded the St. Augustine Indian Mission in 1909; it claims the distinction of being the only Catholic institution in Nebraska directly founded by saint.

Duchesne students cleaning chairs at Our Lady of Fatima Church, Macy, NE.

Seeing the poverty in Macy was an eye-opening experience, students told their chaperones following the trip.

“It’s hard to understand how people in our own state don’t have access to clean water,” one said.

Duchesne students and teachers discussed the challenges facing the community with Dwight Howe, the Cultural Director of the Ponca Tribe. Howe also taught the girls about traditional languages and customs.

“We are grateful for the resources we have; clean water and nearby grocery stores that are stocked with fresh fruits and vegetables,” another student said following the trip.

The students returned to Duchesne on Saturday following a Friday night discussion with St. Augustine Pastor Father Mark Beran. Fr. Beran talked with the girls about his work on the reservation and why he feels called to serve the St. Augustine Mission. The students invited Fr. Beran to celebrate Mass at Duchesne.

A group of people posing for the camera Description automatically generatedDuchesne students with Fr. Beran, Winnebago, NE.

Students and chaperones are now finding new ways to strengthen the relationship between the Duchesne community and the St. Augustine Mission and the entire Winnebago area community.

“This was the spark to make a difference,” said one student.