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Carroll High School Blog

Class of 2024 Artist Spotlight

April 10, 2024
By Archbishop Carroll High School

Five members of the Archbishop Carroll High School Class of 2024 have grown their artistic skills through the Visual Art Department's AP Course work track.  You can view their work in person at the Wilmington/Stroop Branch of the Dayton Metro Library through April 30, 2024.  Meet our artists and learn about their styles and inspirations!

Alyssa Heasley

From a young age I’ve always had an affinity for art. Even in my earliest memories of birthdays and holidays, I always received art supplies. My family dubbed me the artsy kid, and it’s been a part of my identity since. Art is something near and dear to my heart, and I find art in everything I do. Art to me is not just a physical thing but rather an implication of one’s self-expression.

My art is comprised of different influences in my life, whether that be firsthand or inspiration through media. I attribute my style of horror to my grandma. Growing up, I used to spend a lot of time at her house, and she had a room filled with DVDs of horror movies and thrillers as well as regular movies. I used to love to go through her collection and found inspiration in the covers and descriptions of the films.

I like to explore feelings and emotions in all of my pieces. I like to replicate the sense of wonder and curiosity that holds the viewers’ attention. My colors vary on the color scale from dull to natural to create an environment of naturality. I want to transport people to a world exploring uncomfortablity and curiosity. I hope that I did just that. Thank you for viewing my four years of work!


Anna Minc

My love for art has been one of the most consistent things throughout my chaotic life. I’ve always been artistically inclined, but my passion stemmed from the influence of my Aunt Kathy and my own battle with chronic illness. Around my 6th grade year, my Aunt Kathy was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. The way she got through treatment was through filling coloring books and painting. A lot of the symptoms of her chemotherapy were similar to the ones I was experiencing with my chronic illness, so she taught me many mechanisms to cope through art. This is what took my mild interest in art to a full-time hobby and potential career! 

After entering high school, my main concentration in my work has just been trying to illustrate things I find beautiful, whether that be people, scenery, or images from my mind. I tend to explore this through color theory and contrast, which are my favorite art techniques. My preferred mediums still tend to be all kinds of paint, but also printmaking on occasion. I draw inspiration from everything I see around me and am of the belief that everything that exists has beauty, so I hope to show that.

Thanks for viewing my work! I hope you saw a glimpse of the beauty of the world that I see!


Alex Moore

Art has always been a big part of my life, thanks a lot to my family, especially both of my eldest sisters who were and still are very talented artists. I would say that they were the biggest inspiration for my art out of everyone in my family. However, my love for art came way before I really got to see much of my sisters’ beautiful pieces.

I remember quite a few stories my dad had told me from when I was just a toddler. Back when we lived in an apartment, my dad had dedicated an entire segment of wall for me to paint, draw and do anything I wanted that he could paint over. After I had filled the entire wall with whatever drawings could still encompass it, he would paint a fresh coat over it to give me a brand-new canvas. From there forward, I saw everything as a piece of art or something plain with loads of potential to be something much greater.

At some point, I was inspired to become a fashion designer. The thought of wearing art on your body was always such an admirable and expressive way to show yourself. I’ll admit, that was more of a twelve- year-old phase, but I did indeed come up with a lot of fashionable designs!

Art has been present throughout my entire life in significant and impactful ways, and I can comfortably say that it has helped shape me into the person I am today. Whether I was happily doodling as a child or using a big canvas to express and vent my emotions, art has always been there with me. Every empty canvas, paper, notebook, wall, floor, or really anything able to hold color gives me such motivation with huge waves of ideas and opportunity. I’m thankful for the ability to simply draw and for the freedom it brings me to feel. Art is a beautiful feeling! I hope you liked looking at some of my pieces!


Jared Sargent

I first got inspiration from my grandpa who painted many of the pieces hanging around my house; he focused primarily on realistic watercolor paintings. He has always encouraged an exploration of the arts, which encouraged me to find interest in the projects we made in grade school.

Going into high school, I found myself going through the art program and continuing to develop my ideas through my projects. I found that most of my creative expression came from this past year in AP Art where I decided to focus my sustained investigation on the contrasts between lights and darks; creating the mood of fear of the dark/unknown as a result. My artwork primarily contains a central dark object or dark background that contrasts the objects found within the light. Altogether, it is my hope that these pieces will invoke a sense of exploration of the unknown by pushing past the fear.

Over these past years, I have greatly appreciated what the art program has allowed me to create! I hope you are able to enjoy these pieces as I have definitely enjoyed making them!

 


Charli Sproles

I was born into a family of Italian descent, so traditionally, I am named after my grandpa, Charles. He is a former art teacher and painter. Luckily for me, he
passed down his creative genes along with his name!

I found my love for art in 2nd grade when I switched to a new elementary school. My art teacher, Ms. Von Sossan, taught me about many artists who inspired me as I grew older. I tried many different mediums throughout my years in art classes, and my favorites were always colored pencils and pastels. I view art as an outlet for creativity and self-expression.

I have found that creating art can be relaxing and beneficial for one’s mental health. Listening to music while painting, coloring, or sketching can be a great escape from the world around us. With that being said, my fifth period art class is my favorite time of the school day. I am able to unwind and talk to my friends while also expressing myself creatively. Thank you so much for viewing!

Posted in Voices of Learning

Mod Squad: Intervention Specialists Inspire Patriot Learners to Overcome Learning Challenges

April 01, 2024
By Archbishop Carroll High School

After four years of rigorous academic work, an Archbishop Carroll High School Diploma represents mastery at the end of a student’s high school career. For some students, earning that diploma comes with additional challenges beyond the coursework itself. This is where the intervention specialists assist students with diverse learning needs to make walking across the stage at graduation an achievable goal.

The four intervention specialists, lovingly referred to as the “MOD Squad” for the group’s location in a modular building, each handle a caseload of 12-16 students who need assistance in various ways. Each of these students has an Individualized Education Plan (IEP), which is a legal document that affords students the opportunity to receive specially designed instruction. This is developed through collaboration with the students’ parents/guardians, classroom teachers, related services, and the home school district. This document ensures the students receive the academic, emotional, and/or behavioral support they need to succeed.

With the help of scholarships such as the Jon Peterson Scholarship, intervention specialist Stephanie (Pugar) Sagasser ‘08 has seen programming and funding greatly increase in the private school system and at Carroll. “I grew up in Catholic schools, and intervention programs have grown so much since that time,” she said. “It’s great to see students who learn differently have an opportunity to have their needs met within a Catholic school setting.”

Sagasser knew she always wanted to be a teacher, but it wasn’t until her first placement as a University of Dayton student teacher that she realized that working with students with special needs was where she was called to serve. “I fell in love with it,” she recalled. Since that first placement, she has had an opportunity to work with students of varying ability in K-12 classroom settings. From students who need full individualized instruction to those who have met their goals and need minimal support, Sagasser has worked with a wide variety of students, each with different, individual needs. Along with Ben Swick, Allison Ford, and Emily Fogus, Carroll’s other intervention specialists, Sagasser tackles busy days filled with different challenges and circumstances.

Intervention Specialist Stephanie (Pugar) Sagasser '08

They work with small groups of students in the modular unit that provides a safe space to care for students and further assist them with their studies. The team not only checks in with students on their caseload, but they collaborate with the general education teachers in the building and work with them in many different ways. The IEP and 504 paperwork is created, reviewed, and documented by the four intervention specialists. Some students are in a general education classroom that is co-taught by a general education teacher and an intervention specialist in order to provide daily assistance in a mainstream classroom. Days are so busy that lunchtime is often used for department check-ins and teacher collaboration.

Like general education teachers, the intervention specialists prepare their students for life after high school. The intervention team works not only to reinforce the students’ curriculum and classroom lessons, but they also teach the students to advocate for themselves.

“When students leave high school, they need to be able to advocate for what they need since an IEP does not follow them after they graduate,” explains Sagasser. In addition to self advocacy, the intervention specialists focus on teaching their students independent living skills including organization, time management, and personal finance, just to name a few. While some students will remain on an IEP for their entire high school career, many no longer need specially designed instruction before graduation, moments that the MOD Squad celebrates with the student and the team. At that final meeting, the student and team look back on the progress from the student’s academic career and celebrate how far that student has come to get to this point. Sagasser shared how “intensely gratifying” that meeting is for all involved.  “To be able to sit in a meeting and only focus on the positive is refreshing and rewarding.”

The biggest reward for Sagasser has been to watch those students she has worked with for their entire high school career shake hands with Principal Matt Sableski ‘91 at graduation and receive their Archbishop Carroll High School diploma.

“Some students have had a challenging road,” she recalls, “It’s academically difficult, and they made it.”

Now, with a Carroll diploma in hand, students who once had to overcome various challenges are now making a difference and finding success. Sagasser keeps in touch with former students who fill her in on all of their achievements as adults in the career world, and that is a motivation for Sagasser and the MOD Squad. “(They’re) out in the world doing so well, and it’s so good to see that.”

Posted in Voices of Learning
1 comment

Grace Brown '25: Student of the Week March 28, 2024

March 28, 2024
By Archbishop Carroll High School

Grace Brown '25, St. Anthony School Alumna and Gonzaga House Member, with Mrs. Melissa Leaman

At St. Pat's Fest, Grace really went above and beyond.  She stepped into a role that normally was for an adult on Saturday and was here for almost all day cleaning up on Sunday.  She was willing to jump in and do whatever was asked of her without complaint, and I am very thankful for her.

-Mrs. Melissa Leaman

Favorite Restaurant

Cheddars

Favorite Movie

Billy Madison

Who would play you in a movie?

Reese Witherspoon

Place you'd love to travel:

Paris

What activities do you participate in?

I am a football manager and a wrestling stat

What's your favorite part of being a student at Carroll?

Seeing the teacher's happy faces and seeing my friends and making new friends.

What should school “do” for you?

Help educate me and help me pass school and pass and get into a good college.

What’s a lesson you learned when you overcame a difficult obstacle?

To keep my head and do not let people tear me down.

What’s your biggest dream in life?

To become a lawyer and buy my mom a good house to live in.

How do you like spending your free time?

I like to play with my uncle's dog and help my grandma cook and bake. I also love to sleep.

Posted in Voices of Tomorrow

Meet the Director: Building Community Engagement and Fostering Inclusion

March 27, 2024
By Tara Ashworth, Director of Community Engagement and Inclusion

Please allow me to express how honored I am to serve as the Director of Community Engagement and Inclusion at Archbishop Carroll High School. This new position and opportunity has set us on a new path of bringing awareness, support, and appreciation of all cultures represented here on campus. In addition to supporting and celebrating all cultures, this new department is a collaboration of many projects, committees, and clubs I have created or worked on to support all diverse learning abilities and unique skills that our students possess. As your director of this new journey, I look forward to working with the community in partnership with our faculty, students, and families to support all students and create new platforms such as the Multicultural Club and our Community Engagement Team as we strive to be a more inclusive community.

I grew up in Dayton where I attended St. Anthony Catholic School and Kettering City Schools. I earned my Bachelor’s of Arts in Spanish Education and Teaching English as a Second Language at Indiana State University and spent time studying abroad in Costa Rica before accepting my first teaching position at Carroll right out of college in 2012. I have loved calling Carroll home for the last decade and was blessed with many wonderful teaching and learning experiences, sparking my inspiration to study leadership in education. After completing a principalship internship with administrative colleagues here last year, I earned my Master’s degree in Education Administration from Xavier University. My years of experience being mentored and teaching here has helped shape me into the leader I am today. Grateful is an understatement.

I am confident all members of our community want our students to have a safe sense of belonging, and my hope is that the work I do each day to improve communications among all stakeholders, combined with my motivation to celebrate all cultures, continues to fulfill that mission. As Catholics, we know the truth to be that all people have dignity as they were made in the image and likeness of God. Therefore, we seek to be intolerant of cultural discrimination and continue to strive for access and success for all students of all capacities today and in their post-secondary lives as well.

Posted in Voices of Learning

Universal Faith: Meet the Fedorisin Family

March 25, 2024
By Archbishop Carroll High School

The most common things make the biggest difference when you’re 4,800 miles from home.

“I was surprised by how big the roads and the cars are in America,” Noemi Fedorisinova ‘26 recalled – just one of many eye-opening experiences from when she and her family arrived in the United States from their native Slovakia. Unlike many families who left eastern Europe in 2022, Noemi, her sister Sofia ‘24, their parents, and their brothers were not fleeing the burgeoning war between Russia and Ukraine. Their father, Francis, is a Byzantine Catholic Priest who had been urged by a bishop in 2019 to relocate his family to the United States to help grow their ministry.

The family spent months in deliberation and prayer to make a decision. They ultimately decided to leave behind their comfortable lives in Slovakia to answer the bishop’s call to spread their faith. The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic put their plans on hold, but the family arrived in Charlotte after a 24-hour journey from Budapest.

The Fedorisin family gathered in the
Dormition of Mother of God, Byzantine
Catholic Church in Cleveland.

“There was also sadness because I had made good friends and was in a good high school community,” Sofia said. “It’s important for our family to make decisions together and make sacrifices for the church and our faith. It’s important to be able to sacrifice even the great life that we had in Europe. Everything was perfect there, but we sacrificed it to help people here."

After adjusting to the weather, tweaking their English dialect from British to American, and bouncing from Charlotte to Cleveland to Dayton, the family settled into their new life.

“For my first three months of school, I was just sitting and doing nothing because I was so stressed. I tried to speak, but it was bad. When I went to high school, I started to talk and make friends and things got better. The teachers are always trying to help you, and I really appreciate that.”

Sofia and Noemi also learned about the differences between the Roman Catholic and Byzantine traditions while attending Catholic schools. Their father leads the St. Barbara the Great Byzantine Catholic Community and is the officiant for its services in St. John Bosco Chapel on the campus of Wright State University. For all the differences in rites, Sofia says the commonalities are much greater than what distinguishes the two ways of practicing faith.

“Everything that we do in the Byzantine church is based on the Roman Catholic Church. We are Catholic. We are united.”

Editor's Note: This story originally appeared in the Spring 2024 edition of Reflections.  Click here to read the entire magazine.

Posted in Familiar Voices

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