April 2, 2021
Fenwick 2018 Classmates and college juniors Shannon Hayes (Boston College) and Paul Cederoth (University of Virginia).
Fenwick Graduation: 2018
Hometown: La Grange, IL
Grade School: St. Francis Xavier
Current School: Boston College
Internship experience: I am working as a research assistant in the Infant and Child Cognition Lab at Boston College. Right now, we are running multiple studies looking at topics ranging from prosocial behavior to numerical cognition in children who are deaf or hard of hearing. As a research assistant, I run these studies on the children and help the head researchers in the lab develop new ones.
Career aspirations: I’ve really loved the work I’ve been doing in the lab and hope to continue this type of work after graduating college and graduate school, if necessary. Working in psychological research, especially developmental psychology, has given me an opportunity to combine my passions of working with kids and working in science.
Fenwick achievements/activities: Varsity Tennis, Spanish Club, Friar Mentors, National Honors Society, Illinois State Scholar, Tutoring at St. Catherine - St. Lucy.
Fenwick teacher who had the most influence on you: This is a hard one because I had so many great and influential teachers at Fenwick. However, Mrs. Nowicki and Mr. Farran probably had the most influence on me. Mrs. Nowicki was not only a person who could make pre-calculus an enjoyable class, but also someone I could talk to about life. She cares so much about her students and was always there to give advice or help me out. She also got me involved with tutoring at St. Catherine - St. Lucy, where I realized how much I enjoyed education and being a mentor for younger kids. I’m currently part of a tutoring program at Boston College where we go into the city once a week and tutor the student we’ve been paired with for the year.
Mr. Farran also had a huge impact on me. He too cared so much about us and taught us life lessons that I’ll remember forever. He had my dad as a student as well, and I remember being amazed that he could point out where my dad sat in class 30 years ago. I also will never forget how to do electron configuration thanks to him (SPDF).
Fenwick class that had the most influence on you: Speech class with Mr. Arellano. Although at the time I was so scared of that class and of public speaking, the skills I learned have been extremely useful. Having taken a class on public speaking is something that has given me an advantage in some of the courses I’ve taken at BC so far.
Best Fenwick experience/the one you would like to live again: I would definitely play tennis for Fenwick all over again. Whether it be snacks with Mr. Draski, Ubering home from Loyola after our bus broke down, or going to State senior year, I’ll never forget my time playing for Fenwick. I made life-long friends on that team whom I’m still close with today. I would do anything right now to be at a pasta party eating a concerning amount of food with my friends. I would do it all again in a heartbeat if I could.
What Fenwick experience changed you the most:
Going on Kairos brought our whole grade closer together. Being a junior the first time I went, I didn’t know anyone considering we went with the senior class. The days spent on Kairos
helped me create friendships with people I never thought I’d get to know. Going into it, I didn’t expect it to have as much of an impact as it did. I actually knew nothing about it; I had zero clue what was going to happen there and how much it would change me. However, I’m so glad we all had the opportunity to go. It’s something I don’t think I’ll ever forget.
Fenwick Graduation: 2018
Hometown: Oak Park, IL
Grade School: St. Giles
Current School: University of Virginia
Major: History (Minors: in Economics & Astronomy); also, currently in graduate studies for a Master of Public Policy
Internship experience: I’m currently still on the hunt for a summer internship, but my goal is anything public-policy related.
Career aspirations: I’m hoping to pursue a career in public policy, making a positive, tangible difference in people’s lives. As for the specifics, I defer to the bard Bedingfield: “The rest is still unwritten.”
Fenwick achievements/activities: Math Team, Scholastic Bowl, Certamen, WYSE, TEAMS, Cross Country, Friar Mentors, Kairos Leader (September 2017) and Rector (December 2017), National Merit Finalist.
Fenwick teacher who had the most influence on you: I have to split this one in two: first, Mr. Arscott, because he taught me that usually, the most complicated problems have the simplest solutions (and also for phrases like “slash-dash-mcgash” and referring to anything difficult as “AP fun”). Second, Mr. Richied, for imparting to me the lesson that every source of information is worth considering, and that history never has (and never will) occur in a vacuum. Due to space constraints I have to make a number of notable omissions, but it was a rare blessing to study under the Fenwick faculty, among whom there are many saints.
Fenwick class that had the most influence on you: AP Physics 1 & 2 with Mr. Kleinhans for sure. Every unit in that class seemed like the end of the world, like we could never possibly understand those concepts – but always, once we moved on to the next unit, everything would come into focus. If ever there was a class that I wanted to give up on, it was this one – and thus I learned that you always learn more from persevering. Also, there were occasionally donuts.
Best Fenwick experience/the one you would like to live again: This wasn’t one specific experience, but definitely my three years on cross country. Spending two hours running after school doesn’t sound life-changing, but from the bizarre, complicated, esoteric jokes we made over the years, to the shoes that never seemed to get totally free of mud, I would do it again in a heartbeat.
What Fenwick experience changed you the most: I know it’s a common answer, but Kairos was easily the most life-changing experience I had at Fenwick. Going, leading and rectoring, it was a blessing every time. You don’t see 50-plus people become best friends in three days all the time, but Kairos did it without fail. I learned how to be true both to myself and to others, and to reckon the important things in God’s time, not clock time.
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