When it comes to high schools there is no doubt in my mind that Saint Dominic Academy offers the best possible education for young women in grades 7-12. Our classes are academically challenging, our athletic program is competitive yet welcoming, and our learning experiences exceed the perimeters of the classroom setting more than a few times throughout the year. We create a warm and nurturing environment for our students and truly work to inspire them to become empowered leaders of the future.
However, I know that oftentimes, parents and other potential stakeholders do ask the question: Why is Catholic secondary education for women so important? In a day and age where many public and charter schools are offering specialized academic programs and where co-ed Catholic schools offer the allure (and drama and tears) of taking classes with young men, what makes so many parents and their daughters choose Saint Dominic Academy? It is because, day in and day out since 1878, we have offered a foundation supported by the Dominicans that truly shapes young women for the future.
As a graduate of the Academy of Saint Aloysius, I can attest first hand to the importance of Catholic secondary education for women. I would not be where I am today without the backing and support of the Sisters of Charity and without the strong foundations I received at their institution. Catholic education provides young women with the opportunity to become, as we at Saint Dominic Academy so frequently phrase it, “empowered”.
During the formative years of 12- 18, attending an all girls school allows our young women, your daughters, to learn that they can indeed do it all. Our girls are the star athletes, the student council presidents, the leads in the musicals, the top students in the class. As parent Eileen Gill recently stated via Facebook: The dedication, discipline and teamwork that these girls put into this team week after week are a tribute to their hard-working coaches, and the culture of Saint Dominic Academy. While your daughters attend Saint Dominic Academy, they are the innovators and achievers, with nobody to stand in their spotlight or to make them feel that what they are doing is not something “women do.” It is at all girls Catholic schools where girls truly learn that all people are created equal and that intelligent, faith-filled women can change the world, make it better, and reach any goal they set for themselves.
I learned all of those lessons during my time in Catholic school and it is those lessons that set me on my path to the future. If I had not had the opportunity to attend The Academy of Saint Aloysius, I may not ever have truly realized how important it is for our Catholic girls’ schools to stay strong, stay vital and to maintain a true presence in the lives of all girls. Those sentiments were recently expressed to me via email from parent Joyce Debronsky, who shared her feeling that SDA’s future is bright…I am glad our family is a part of it!
Today, I thank each of our parents in grades 7-12 for choosing Saint Dominic Academy, for putting the future of your daughters into the hands of all who work so hard daily, and for entrusting us to set them on the right path to the future. You chose wisely, you chose well, and we are honored to have your daughters here with us each day.
From 1878 to today, and far into the future, Saint Dominic Academy will offer young ladies a chance to be everything they ever dreamed of being: STEM scholars, Presidents, Soloists, Athletes, and there is never someone saying “girls cannot…” At Saint Dominic Academy, we work every day to send the message that “Girls Can” and “Girls Should” and that message, more than any other, helps to create a world of women who work for the betterment of society as a whole.