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JOSIE, Class of 2021
Elementary/Middle School: Nativity of Mary Catholic School, Independence, MO
Activities/Interests: Creative Writing Club, Gardening & Composting Society, Dance Club, National Honor Society, French Honor Society, and the Student Leadership Team.
This year, one of my STA friends and I started a social justice and political activism extracurricular called The Redline and I also help manage the Big Sister/Little Sister Program at STA. Outside of school, I take both dance and piano lessons. I am also the co-host of a podcast called The Cashew Project with one of my friends from STA.
Why did you choose to attend St. Teresa's Academy?
I was the only girl from my school to attend STA, which I chose not only because of the beautiful campus, but, more importantly, because of their devotion to providing each student with a quality education and the opportunity to meet new people. I really admired how hard all of the girls worked, whether that was through a sport or balancing a full load of AP classes, the atmosphere at STA inspired me to challenge myself. I was also dying to meet new people and make new friends, and, yes, it was so scary, but looking back, it was definitely worth it.
What has been your favorite class at STA?
My favorite class at STA was my sophomore year English class, Advanced World Literature. While it was an intimidating class at first, I was able to read and discover my favorite book of all time, A Thousand Splendid Suns, and be exposed to so many new and different ways of analyzing and discussing literature, which is one of my favorite things to do academically.
What is your favorite part of the STA community?
My favorite part of the STA community is the willingness to help one another that embodies not only the students, but teachers as well. It has molded a conducive environment for students to make lasting friendships and to also get the help they need when they need it. You will come to know for a fact that if you feel like you are struggling, you are not alone. You have a whole community backing you who are always ready to support you to the best of their ability.
What has been your most memorable experience at STA?
One of my most memorable experiences at STA was attending the Congregation of the Sisters of St. Joseph Leadership Conference in Chicago. I got to meet students from our sister schools from all across the country and was able to learn more about the history, legacy, and leadership that is deeply embedded in the mission of STA and the Sisters of St. Joseph.
Looking back at your year(s) at STA, what would you tell yourself on the first day of school?
Now that I'm a senior and I've almost fully absorbed the STA experience, I would tell my first-day-of-school self to stay motivated. School can definitely get tiring, but no matter what, don't let it slow you down because there is so much you can miss out on if you do. Also, savor all the connections you make and even if they change, know that that does not make them any less significant, they are now just part of your journey at STA.
What advice would you give to prospective students who are considering STA?
Apply. No matter how intimidating STA may feel at first, I cannot stress enough the multitude of opportunities that you will be able to find. I promise you, with all my heart, that you will find your people, your own groove, and you will leave your mark because, ultimately, STA is what you make it. There is not an established structure for how your life will look at STA, but that's the most incredible part. You will be able to discover so many parts of yourself that you didn't even know existed. I've said it once, but I'll say it again, STA is what you make it, so why not give it a try.
What is the one thing you have learned most about yourself? How has STA helped you discover that?
One thing I've learned about myself is that I am curious and an extremely hard worker. I had always known my education was important to me, but I didn't know the extent of it until I was in the classroom at STA. In the classroom, and even outside of the classroom, I was able to explore different and exciting topics and discussions that had never been applied to my education before. My freshman year, I gradually found myself becoming more comfortable raising my hand in class and asking questions, which I do in all my classes now. STA helped me find a piece of my confidence that had been missing and didn't even know was missing, but it is now a crucial part of who I am today.