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Collegiate Friars: September 2018


Catching up with young alumni Sarah Lewis '16 (right, with fellow Friar and UChicago classmate Isabella Fiorito) and Sean Obrachta '17 (far right).


Fenwick Graduation: 2016

Hometown: Westchester, IL

Grade School: St. Giles

Current School:  The University of Chicago

 Current Major: Political Science

Summer Internship: This summer, I worked in journalism and media as a writer for the Student Travel Planning Guide in Willowbrook.

Career aspirations: Undecided (I’m interested in Pre-Law and Pre-Journalism, but if anyone has any ideas as to what I should do with my life, feel free to let me know!)

Fenwick achievements/activities: Probably the most fun I had at Fenwick came from being part of the Preaching Team, Speech Team and The Wick. In particular, I have to mention just how much Hunter Clancy and Riley Mullen, class of 2016 as well, never failed to make me laugh at every Preaching Team meeting and event. Also, traveling with the Speech Team to Nationals and Harvard are definitely highlights of my time at Fenwick. Finally, The Wick gave me my start in writing and journalism, and now at UChicago, I am having the best time as a copy-editor and contributor to our newspaper, The Maroon.

Fenwick teacher who had the most influence on you: It’s probably no surprise that Fr. Joe [Ekpo] had the most influence on me, particularly because his mission wasn’t just about teaching you so that you could do well on a test. It was much deeper than that. It was about attacking life with faith and a good heart, treating others well, and doing good for others throughout the course of your life. He taught me what it means to worry about one’s character rather than reputation.

Fenwick class that had the most influence on you: Mr. Arellano’s speech class had the most influence on me during my time at Fenwick because being able to orate and simply just talk to one another is one of the greatest skills that I have brought to college and the work force. One of my greatest fears sometimes, even in a class, is raising my hand and being totally misunderstood, or asking a ‘stupid’ question at work. However, speech class gave me the confidence to speak up and ask questions. In a way, speech also helped me listen to people better -- another skill that’s just great to have for life as well.

Best Fenwick experience/the one you would like to live again: Honestly, one of the most under-rated experiences at Fenwick is attending Mass with your whole school and, particularly, the last Mass I had with the entire school is one that I would like to live again. I’d go back to this moment not because I know I really wasn’t listening and can’t remember a word of it, but because that experience brings together everyone in one room to share in our faith. And even beyond that, even if you’re not Catholic, those homilies were always some of the most insightful life lessons any Fenwick teacher or priest could have taught me.

What Fenwick experience changed you the most: This one stumps me because I don’t think I can pinpoint just one experience that changed me the most. Of course, Kairos comes to mind, and it truly is a once in a lifetime experience. After four years at Fenwick, I realized that you think it’ll be one moment, one experience, that grows you up. But really it’s more like 1,000 different moments that grow you up, and they never stop. I just kept on learning more and more from everyone there, my peers and teachers alike, and I found out that people change people. So I guess the experience that changed me the most was constantly being challenged by the incredible people surrounding me to do better for others. I learned to never stop striving for excellence, since the bar was set so high by all the amazing Fenwick students and faculty.


Fenwick Graduation: 2017

Hometown: Chicago, IL

Grade School: St. Andrews Lutheran in Park Ridge

Current School:  Northwestern University

 Current Major: Biology / Environmental Science

Summer Internship: I’m worked at AA Rental Center in Melrose Park with fellow ’17’s Kevin Regan and Pat Vitale for my summer job to make some money for the coming school year. Once I get back to Evanston, I have plans to assist a faculty member in botanical research.

Career aspirations:  I’m planning on having a career in animal field research after I go to grad school. As of right now I’m hoping to specialize in urban wildlife but that is definitely open to change down the road.

Fenwick achievements/activitiesScholastic Bowl Captain of our Regional title-winning team, WYSE varsity member, Faculty Award in Biology and Environmental Science, football team manager, lacrosse team member, Write Place tutor, Kairos leader December 2016

Fenwick teacher who had the most influence on you: Every single teacher that has taught me is responsible for where I am now, and I cannot thank them enough for the positive impact they have had on my life. However, I would like to give a shout-out to two teachers in particular. Mrs. Visteen prepared me for college and life in AP Language and Comp and was also an excellent Write Place supervisor. Mr. Burnett was my Scholastic Bowl coach and helped to always push me to do my best, and he also expanded my view of society in AP World History.

Fenwick class that had the most influence on you: Mrs. Weicher’s Honors American English class. It was the first time I really got into American literature and being able to trace the country’s differing voices throughout history was interesting.

Best Fenwick experience/the one you would like to live again: The State Semi-Final Basketball game in Peoria. The road trip down, the energy of the student section, and just how loud it got after Jacob Keller dunked in the fourth quarter all combined to [make it] an unforgettable experience.

What Fenwick experience changed you the most: The October and December Kairos retreats. Being a retreatant and leader both changed me in different ways, and both changed me for the better. 

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