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Collegiate Friars: July 2021

Catching up with young alumni Alex Kapusta '18 (University of Illinois ) and Lily Turcich '19 (University of Kentucky).

Fenwick Graduation: 2018
Hometown: La Grange, IL
Grade School: St. Cletus
Current School:  University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Major: Financial Planning

Summer Internship: This summer I am working for Horizon Wealth Management, LLC in downtown La Grange. It is a Registered Investment Advisor office that I am sure will be a great fit for me while I can offer my skillset for the success of the firm. I [also] am continuing my caddy career at Butterfield Country Club in Oak Brook.

Career Aspirations: For a few years now, it has been a goal of mine to be a partner at a financial advising firm, similar to the one I am interning for this summer. Right out of college, though, I am hoping to work at a bank or in corporate finance. If those opportunities lead to bigger roles, I would stay on that career path for some time but eventually I would like to be a business owner or in a big role somewhere.

Fenwick Achievements/Activities: National Honor Society, Illinois State Scholar, Soccer, Basketball, Rugby, Broadcasting Club, Italian Club, Kairos Retreat Leader

Fenwick teacher who had the most influence on you: This is a very tough question to answer because there have been multiple teachers that have influenced me and shaped my character today. If I had to choose one, I have to say the teacher that stands out is Mr. Quinn. I had him as a teacher for two different classes: United States History and AP Government. Over the course of my junior and senior year, Mr. Quinn not only taught me history and the way this country’s government operates, but introduced to students a new way of thinking and processing information that is presented to you. Mr. Quinn also is more than a teacher. He was always the happiest man in the halls of Fenwick, and every time we would cross paths he asked how I was doing. The reason Mr. Quinn is the teacher who had the most influence on me was not only his teachings in the classroom but his efforts to care about his students and help them transform into successful men and women.

Fenwick class that had the most influence on you: Of all the classes I had taken at Fenwick, AP Economics with Mr. Gallo was the class that had the biggest effect on me. Learning micro and macroeconomics was very influential as to why I chose to be a financial planning major in college. My interest in markets and commerce was sparked in this class, which has expanded over the years. Students in my major at University of Illinois are required to take multiple economics courses, and I was able to remember things about AP Economics that helped me to succeed.

I distinctly remember multiple times during the year, Mr. Gallo would tell us to keep our notebooks because they would be useful in college. It ended up being great advice because his acronyms and sayings made studying for exams easier!

Best Fenwick experience/the one you would like to live again: There is not necessarily one singular experience that I would like to live again, but instead a period of time. While I was in the Broadcasting Club, I had the privilege of being a color commentator for basketball games. My friend Chris Sedlacek and I had some great times in our makeshift booth in the stands, and it was great to watch almost every home game.

What Fenwick experience changed you the most? I know this may be a cliché but going on the Kairos retreat senior year was an experience that changed my outlook on life and how I approach obstacles that may come my way. I was lucky enough to attend the retreat a second time as a leader, and both trips to Bellarmine were great in their own ways. One thing that stayed constant was that there are many people who care about you and are looking out for your best interests. This is reflected throughout the Fenwick community, as there are always fellow Friars I meet on campus or at work and they are always very supportive. I always enjoy encountering other graduates, and I am sure they feel the same way.


Fenwick Graduation: 2019
Hometown: Willow Springs, IL
Grade School: St. John of the Cross (Western Springs)
Current School: University of Kentucky
Major: Integrated Strategic Communications

Summer Internship: Volunteering for H2H (Home 2 Home) as a social media correspondent. H2H is non-profit whose mission is to transform spaces of the formerly homeless by reclaiming and repurposing gently used household items and furniture thus creating a ‘home.’ It is an amazing experience being a part of an organization doing so much in our community.

Career Aspirations: Content marketing in a corporate setting utilizing my skills to design marketing campaigns.

Fenwick Achievements/Activities: Volleyball, Lacrosse and German Club

Fenwick teacher who had the most influence on you: There were many teachers who’s influence impacted my experience at Fenwick, but Mr. Kmiecik’s study hall taught me more than how to study and organize my schoolwork. As an average student coming into Fenwick, I was very skeptical if I would succeed at a school of high achievers. Participating in Mr. Kmiecik’s study hall showed me that success is more than a 4.0 GPA. The ability to communicate your needs, how to develop a working relationship with your teachers, organizing daily tasks, understanding and comprehending the concepts of what is being presented, these are the skills that will help you succeed in future endeavors.

Fenwick class that had the most influence on you: Mr. Grooms’ American Foreign Policy class had the biggest impact on me as a student and continues to influence my perspective on world events. It opened my eyes to the concept of diplomacy and how the world works outside the United States. It challenged me to look at historical events and how decisions made in the past have impacted our world today. 

Best Fenwick experience? This might be a surprise to many, but speech class with Mr. Arellano was one of my best Fenwick experiences. Never have I been around a man who instilled such fear in me but, at the same time, I knew I will be a better person for mastering the skill. In Mr. Arellano’s class I learn a lot about myself as a person and how to deliver a speech. Every speech and pop quiz kept me on my toes. I feel sorry for incoming students who will never have the opportunity meet him and experience his wise commentary on the superior Chicago baseball team. Go SOX!

The Fenwick experience you would like to live again: One experience I would love to live again was my sophomore year when Varsity Boys’ Basketball went undefeated in the Chicago Catholic League and finished runner up in the IHSA 3A State Championship. To be in the stands during those home games and hear the crowds cheering, it is what high school sports is all about – one school, one team. This was my first time experiencing the support the Fenwick community can provide. We drove down to Peoria and the whole Fenwick student section was alive with excitement. The score board may not have reflected the outcome we desired, but it was great to see the pride everyone had to be a Friar!

We play a little basketball down at the University of Kentucky and I look forward to cheering on my fellow Friar alum Bryce Hopkins [Class of 2021].
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