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Collegiate Friars: September 2019

September 4, 2019

The Fighting Irish’s Jack Henige and the Fighting Illini’s Jesse Maldonado both hail from the Fenwick Class of 2017.



The 6’5” Henige, a Notre Dame tight end, has bulked up to 240 pounds.

Fenwick Graduation: Class of 2017
Hometown: Hinsdale, IL
Grade School: Hinsdale Middle School
Current School: University of Notre Dame
Current Major: Finance Major and History Minor

Summer experience: This past summer, I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to study abroad in South Africa. We started our trip in Cape Town, traveled down the southern coast to Port Elizabeth and then to Johannesburg. We ended the trip with a safari in Kruger National Park. Along the way, we studied the origins of the racist apartheid system and its ultimate downfall, with a focus on the psychology of individuals that made apartheid possible. 
Career aspirations: I hope to use my Finance degree to enter the business world and pursue a career in investment banking. I am unsure where I will go from there, but I trust that my Fenwick education and college degree has prepared me well. 
Fenwick achievements/activities: I played tight end for the 2016 Friar football team that enjoyed an 11-2 season and a deep run in the IHSA playoffs. Unfortunately, we endured a controversial loss to Plainfield North in the semifinals. I was honored to be named to the IHSA All-Academic Team and the Chicago Catholic League All-Conference Team. I am thankful to Coach Nudo for helping to prepare me for my role as a member of the Notre Dame football team.

I also played basketball for Coach Malnati. We had a 30-5 record and went downstate to Peoria for the state playoff Final Four. We lost in overtime to Morgan Park in the final game. I had a great experience playing basketball and football at Fenwick. My teammates from high school are some of my best friends still today and I wouldn’t have had it any other way. 

Fenwick teacher who had the most influence on you: Fenwick’s teachers are what makes it a great school. So many of them had significant impacts on my education, and I am very thankful for that. I took Dr. Porter’s Latin class for all four years and did not expect to enjoy it as much as I did. Dr. Porter sparked an interest in Latin that I had not realized I had. Her passion for Ancient Rome and the Latin culture made class interesting and engaging. I really respect her teaching style and am grateful for the experience.

Fenwick class that had the most influence on you: Dr. Lordan’s freshman World History class has had a greater influence on me than I ever could have hoped. Dr. Lordan had an unbelievable ability to simplify significant world events into entertaining and insightful stories. He was an excellent educator and taught his students to be moral, servant-leaders.

The Fenwick experience that changed you the most: Father Joe’s theology class was a moving and reflective experience for all students fortunate enough to have taken it. Fr. Joe [Epko] taught us sophomores what it meant to be loved by Jesus, to love one another and how to live as a Christian. He always had a smile on his face and brought joy to every one of his students. He used his childhood and his life story to teach us about faith and about hope, providing great lessons for everyone. The example he set for everyone by always being happy, grateful and loving -- even after all the hardship he endured as a child -- was impactful for me and many of my friends.

Best Fenwick experience/the one you would like to live again: I would be remiss if I weren’t to acknowledge our loss in the last football game of my high school career. The referees made the wrong call at the end of the game and it cost us a trip to Champaign to play for the state title. It was not the fault of the players, the coaches or any of the Fenwick administration, but I was very proud of the Fenwick community for rallying around our cause and supporting us until the end. It was a memorable experience and one that I will never forget. This one play can never diminish the fun and brotherhood that we shared as a football team, but I would like to relive it with a different outcome. Go Friars!



Fenwick Graduation: Class of 2017
Hometown: Chicago
Grade School: Immaculate Conception School
Current School: University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign
Major: Social Work Major and LGBT/Queer Studies Minor

Summer experience: This summer, I attended a Social Justice Training Institute conference at the University of Cincinnati. I had the opportunity to meet with students from universities ar­­­­ound the United States and discuss issues facing each of our campuses and our nation as a whole. It was a transformative experience for me in that I was able to join a network of individuals who are passionate about creating social change while being given skills to confront injustice and facilitate cross-cultural dialogue. 

My involvements on campus this year include being a Multicultural Advocate (MA) in University Housing, a facilitator for First Year Acquaintance Rape Education (FYCARE) and the vice president external of Women of Pride, the largest LGBT Registered Student Organization on campus. In each of these roles, I act as an ally and educator on issues related to identity and social justice in order to create inclusive and safe environments. 

Career aspirations: After graduating with my bachelor’s degree from the School of Social Work at UIUC, I plan to attend graduate school to receive my MSW. My hope is that I can work on a systems level, whether that be in the field of policy-making or at a nonprofit, in order to work towards social equity. Some areas I would like to work in would be increasing access to healthcare, particularly for people of color and LGBTQIA populations, sexual assault and other violent-crime prevention, and addressing income inequality.

Fenwick achievements/activities: Spoken Word Poetry Club, President of Hispanic Outreach and Latino Awareness (HOLA), The Write Place Tutor and National Honor Society

Fenwick teacher who had the most influence on you: One of the most influential teachers I had was Mr. Kleinhans, who taught both my AP Physics 1 and Intro to Computer Science courses. My classmates and I were always able to tell that he wanted to be there teaching us, and I am inspired to have that same attitude about my own work in the future. On a more personal level, interacting with Mr. Kleinhans whether it be during lectures, weekly thoughtful meditations or one-on-one conversations, was always a positive experience for me and I am thankful for not only his kindness, but his commitment to helping students see the value every one of them has. 

Fenwick class that had the most influence on you: Even though the information learned in class is not something that currently comes up in my day-to-day life, one of the most impactful classes I took at Fenwick was Honors Chemistry with Mr. Farran during my sophomore year. In this class, I was able to think critically through my own learning process as well as develop study and interpersonal skills that I have taken with me into my college courses. Mr. Farran is one of the sweetest and most genuine individuals I have ever met. He made me excited about chemistry and learning in general, and I am endlessly thankful I was able to have him as a teacher. 

My best Fenwick experience: One of my favorite experiences associated at Fenwick would have to be my time as the president of the Hispanic Outreach and Latino Awareness (HOLA) club during my senior year. Working closely with one of my other favorite teachers at Fenwick, Ms. Gallinari, to put on social, educational and outreach events allowed me to explore my own leadership process, particularly as an individual representing my identity groups. I have many fond memories from being in this club, from dancing together during meetings to hosting events, but one of my favorites has to be the food drive we put on for St. Pius V parish in which we collected and delivered an amount of food estimated to be worth thousands of dollars.



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