February 2015

Capstone Focuses On The Homeless

Spending $43,000 a year to keep the homeless on the streets or pay $11,000 a year to give each homeless person a roof over their head?

The answer seems obvious. Which is why three seniors chose for their capstone project to present a similar idea to work in the City of Dayton.

Laura Bullock, Andrew Neick and Nathaniel Scupski met with Mayor Nan Whaley earlier this month presenting their model to help those in poverty and the homeless in the Dayton area. Their presentation focused on how cities in Colorado, Texas and Oregon are using "mini homes" to give the homeless a place to stay and how it cut down on the amount taxpayers were paying each year by thousands of dollars.

The students said this model is practical for a city like Dayton. "I think it's cool that we're joining a movement to end homelessness and bringing it to Dayton," said Scupski.

Visual aids including a mini home model built by Bullock were used in the seniors' presentation. They also shared their idea to the St. Vincent de Paul Council of Dayton.

Four Qualify for State Competition

Senior Erin Staley had one dream in mind when this year's swimming season began.

"We're going to state."

And now, that dream is a reality.

Staley '15, a captain on the team, along with team members Macleary Moran '18, Gerogia Albino '15 and Abby Arestides '17, have qualified for the swimming state championships taking place this week.

Moran will be participating in four events including the 200 freestyle and 500 freestyle. Staley will also be competing in the 500 freestyle. All four women will race together in the 200 freestyle relay and 400 freestyle relay.

"I'm beyond happy. If I had to end my swimming career right now this is a great way to go. I wouldn't have it any other way and it's just really nice to be a part of this team," Staley said about the accomplishment.

She also offers this advice to her teammates about achieving their goals, "don't sell yourself short. Just think you can do it, reassure yourself and don't psych yourself out and just swim your heart out."

Qualifying rounds are set for Thursday. Finals are on Friday.


Students Earn Artistic Honors

Congratulations are in order for three students who were earned awards through the Scholastic Art Awards!

With works of digital art, Adzaan Muqtadir '16 earned 2 Gold Keys and 3 Honorable Mentions in the Scholastic Art Competition. Her Gold Key works are titled "Summertime Memories: Going Around and Around" and "Taking in Cosmos." Her Honorable Mention works include "Dayton in Color," "A Day Downtown" and "Blue Day." 

“Adzaan has a style all her own,” Diane Barr, art teacher said. “I’m impressed with what she creates, and I’m glad to know others are as well!” 

“I started learning and experimenting with digital art since I took photography class first semester.” Muqtadir said. “I already liked taking photos in my free time for fun, but with the class I learned how to really tweak my photos with editing processes through PhotoShop. As we learned a wide variety of different techniques, I discovered more and more possibilities of transforming my photos into my own works of art.”

Diane Barr encouraged Muqtadir to submit some of her work into the Scholastic Art competition, Muqtidir said. As a result, three edits of shots of downtown Dayton were awarded Honorable mention, and an edit of an amusement park ride and a silhouetted figure were awarded the Gold Key award.

A Gold Key is awarded to the best works submitted to a region, and are automatically considered for national-level recognition, results which will be announced on March 16. Honorable mention is awarded to pieces that show great skill and potential. K12 Gallery and TEJAS will exibit the award-winning work mid-February.

Megan Schultz '18 earned two Honorable Mentions for her photos "Chorus of Clouds" and "All You Need is Clay." Audrey Springman '16 earned one Honorable Mention for her ceramics and glass piece "Butterflies in my Stomach."

Miami Valley area students sent in 1,200 submissions this school year. Out of this amount, there were 75 Gold Keys and 155 Honorable Mention awards.

The Scholastic Art and Writing awards have been around for 90 years, and are considered the nation’s most prestigious recognition initiative for young artists and writers. The Alliance for Young Artists and Writers is behind the program, and is a nonprofit organization with a mission to “identify students with exceptional artistic and literary talent and present their remarkable work to the world through the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards.”

According to the Scholastic Art and Writing website, students across America submitted 255,000 original art and writing works during the 2014 school year. Keep an ear out in late February for the writing results!


Muse Machine Artist Program

DCDC2 (Dayton Contemporary Dance Company 2) came and performed for CJ students as part of this year’s “Muse Machine In-School Artist” program in early February.

“Muse offers many community artist opportunities that are complementary to the performing arts programming we have at CJ,” Caitlin Bennet said. “The in-school artists were a huge draw and the student audiences have loved them. DCDC2 is our third artist of the school year. The previous two included The Black Box Improv Theatre and The Human Race Theatre Company.”

The company presented a repertory lecture/demonstration titled “In A Word: A Literary Landscape.” Contemporary dances were inspired by the internal conflict often found in great literary and musical works, including Shakespeare’s tragic drama, Romeo and Juliet,  Harper Lee’s classic novel, To Kill a Mockingbird, author Maya Angelous, Footloose, and The Wizard of Oz. The goal of the performance was to “inspire students to independently read these great masterpieces as they witness the visual transformation of the stories through contemporary dance.”

Kelly Muhl, current secretary to the president, attended the performance as a DCDC alum. From 1989-1992, Muhl was a member of DCDC as she added contemporary dance to her dance repertoire, which had previously centered on ballet. Muhl was excited to see the performance and is grateful for the time the dancers share with high school students.

“I’m glad DCDC2 comes to schools because it provides a chance for students to see the artistry and work that occurs behind the scenes of any performance,” Muhl said. “It allows those who may not necessarily often go to the theater have an up-close and personal experience with dance and the fine arts, without spending the money such an experience often requires.”

Midway through the performance, ten students were invited to join the dancers on stage to learn a piece inspired by “The Wizard of Oz.”

“The combination of dance, music, and literature was beautiful,” student participant David Marshall ‘15 said. “The dancers use their talent to show us how perfectly literature can be meshed with dance through music. I have seen DCDC perform before so I was excited to see them again, and they exceeded my expectations,” he said. 

Afterwards, a question-answer session allowed students to learn more about the dances, dancers, and pursuing art in college. One dancer encouraged the students to go to college, even if they plan on being a professional dancer or other artist.

“Going to college allowed me to learn more about dance, and also more about life,” she said. “It created a more well-rounded view of the art form I love, and in turn inspired an even greater passion to pursue it. Also, college teaches a structure and organization necessary to support a passion, no matter what art form it may be.”

Senior Capstone: Body Image

In today’s world, only 11% of girls world-wide feel comfortable using the word “beautiful” to describe themselves. To combat this lack of positive body image, four courageous CJ seniors are using their Senior Capstone project to inspire freshmen girls to be confident in their own beauty.

Seniors Taylor Banks, Gretchen Theil, Kayla Lamantia, and Sarah Downing chose this topic because it is close to their hearts.

“It’s an issue that’s near and dear to us,” said Banks. “We’ve all had issues with body confidence."

On Monday, February 9, freshmen girls gathered in the auditorium to view the senior’s presentation about positive body image. The presentation included statistics and quotes involving the spiritual, mental, physical, and emotional aspects of body image, and concluded with a viewing of a music video.

The song “Try”, by popular musician Colbie Caillat, inspired the video. The original music video features the lyrics “You don’t have to try so hard” and depicts women and girls taking off their make up, demonstrating that they are happy with themselves and their natural beauty.

The remade version of this video features CJ students taking the same positive action and displaying their natural beauty.

“We’re hoping that showing our remake of the video will show the freshmen girls they can do it too,” said Theil. “If they see older girls they know in the video then they can go natural too.”

“We’re not afraid to put ourselves out there, because we’re beautiful,” added Banks.

Kayla Lamantia decided to share her personal struggle with body image as part of the presentation.

“Every girl goes through this, you are not alone,” she said. “Even when it seems like you’re alone, you’re not, God is there. I was able to realize how beautiful I really am through God”.

When they first sat down in the auditorium, the freshmen girls were instructed to write down their biggest insecurity on a note card that they held throughout the presentation. After they watched the music video, they were then told to rip up the notecard, because “their differences are what make them unique and beautiful”.

“In the past I started to develop body image problems,” said Downing. “This project helped me a lot, it helps to revisit your insecurities and realize they don’t matter.”

All of the seniors hope to convey this positive message to the younger girls.

“We’re really excited to share this message with the freshmen,” said Theil. “Our goal is to impact the girls and let them know they’re beautiful the way they are.”

Sister Dorothy Lives!

Today, the entire CJ community gathered in prayer and reflection on the 10th anniversary of Sr. Dorothy Stang's, SNDdeN '49 martydom. Hymns, readings and general intercessions were based on the beatitudes, hallmarks of the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur, and the example of Sr. Dorothy. We are reminded that we are called to serve, come together in community, and act on behalf of justice and peace in our world.

Sr. Rita Sturwold, SNDdeN '60, who is the U.S. director of mission integration for the Sisters, explained what it was like to receive the news of Sr. Dorothy's death at Mount Notre Dame in Cincinnati. She talked about the impact on the Sisters, and how, in that instant, the world came to know who Sr. Dorothy was — and why her life was taken. Sr. Rita said that from that day on, those in the Brazilian communities that Sr. Dorothy served and those who supported her work, shouted, "Sister Dorothy Lives!" and proclaimed that she now belonged to the world.

She said that since Sr. Dorothy's death, the number of communities and schools in Brazil inspired by Sr. Dorothy and the Sisters of Notre Dame have more than doubled. She said that she appreciated the efforts of Chaminade Julienne and students attending Sisters of Notre Dame schools throughout the world to keep Sr. Dorothy's spirit alive. She closed by reminding everyone that in their individual efforts to stand up for what is right, they could always ask for the intercession of Sr. Dorothy when they come upon a situation that is challenging.

The service closed with the hymn: Dorothy Stang, You Will Never Die, J.P Miranda, arr. Bobby Fisher

Song Refrain: Sister Dorothy, you will live forever in the hearts and minds of all you knew. Like a tree planted by the water your roots run deep, still bearing fruit. Sister Dorothy, you will live forever for you left a legacy of faith. We'll carry on the work you started, praying God will grant us grace.

Winter Concert - Thurs., Feb. 12 • 7 pm

Take a break from winter routine and come to the Chaminade Julienne auditorium for an evening of great music! Student choirs and band ensembles have created a program that will help blast through the winter blahs.

The evening's program includes songs by the concert band, concert choir, percussion ensemble, string ensemblem and a cappela groups, Vega and Age V. CJ's sign language group, Hands In Harmony, will also feature guest performers from area elementary schools who will sign to the song, "Song of the Body of Christ."

"They've been coming out to practice each week, and it's fun to watch them learn. They are energetic about it," said Jessica Carter '15, who is providing vocals for the group. "I think it's cute that they get to come and sign with us."

Concert choir will be featuring gospel-style melodies including "Hold onto the Rock, "May Night," and "Oh, Happy Day." "The songs have increased in difficulty for us over the year," said group member Dallas Daneker '15. "We are also featuring solos for this concert and including some dance moves, too."


Mock Trial

CJ’s Mock Trial "Green Team" earned the right to advance to Regional competition after placing as a top team in the Montgomery County District competition, held January 30. Twenty-three students on three different Eagle teams have been preparing since October for the competition held in the Montgomery County Courthouse.

In the competition, teams of four students serve as either the plaintiff or defense in a mock trial. Each trial lasts 2 hours and three judges score each trial. This year, the trial was based on the 8th amendment “Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.”

CJ’s Green Team (pictured in Community Update header) was one of the top seven teams out of 20 that will complete at the Regional level on February 20th. Team members include Defense attorneys Ashley Huffman '15 and Nick Nevius '15, Defense Witnesses Kat Dranchak '16 and Jacob Troutwine '17, Plaintiff attorneys Will Huffman '16 and Elizabeth Sinnathamby '15, and Plaintiff witnesses Margot Duffy '15 and Allison Huffman '16.

“Mock Trial is a great opportunity to learn about the legal system and meet new people,” Ashley Huffman said. “We spent a lot of time together preparing and we had three strong teams at the competition. I am so excited that the team tripled in size since last year and we are able to continue to learn more when we move on to Regionals.”

Kat Dranchak, Bella Peters and Holly Siefert were awarded “Outstanding Witness” in their respective court cases.

“This is my first year with Mock Trial, and I feel like it has been a very enriching experience, especially in learning about the legal system,” Kat Dranchak said. “I am excited to advance to Regionals, and I feel like all of our hard work has paid off, especially after beating a tough team in the District Competition.”

The teams were advised by Tony Riccuto, social studies teacher, and attorneys Chris Hollon, Chris Herman, and Kathryn Huffman.

This is the second year for Mock Trial at CJ since it was re-introduced as a program last year. More about the program can be read in the Community Update  "Mock Trial Makes Its Return-Again."

"I think a lot of television shows tend to show that being part of the legal system is only about courtroom arguments (which is sometimes true), but the Mock Trial program helped me see just how much work is also involved in studying and preparing for a case," Jacob Troutwine said. "I think that the experience is enriching, and greatly helps me both understand the legal system better, and also appreciate it more."

There will be a three-day Mock Trial Seminar this summer for incoming freshman through seniors. Anyone interested in learning more about this opportunity should email Tony Ricciuto.

Posted February 5, 2015


Poetry Out Loud

One microphone amplified the poems of twenty-nine individual voices during CJ’s 8th annual Poetry Out Loud Competition on January 29.

To get to the school-wide competition, students initially prepare poems selected from the Poetry Out Loud website and compete within their English classes. Winners of classroom competitions are then invited to compete in the school wide competition. There, each student recites one poem. Based on scoring, six students are asked to recite a second poem.

“Although they may not be athletes or musicians or actors, these students also get a chance to perform on a stage, whether that is in a classroom or in the school auditorium,” Jim Brooks, English teacher and coordinator of the school-wide POL competition, said. “That makes it all worthwhile.”

The winning score is determined from a formula taking accuracy, physical presence, voice and articulation, appropriateness of dramatization, level of difficulty, evidence of understanding, and overall performance into account.

“POL gives our students a deep experience of the genre of writing and reading that we call poetry,” Brooks said. “They take ownership of two works by different authors, and they share in the experience of other students doing the same thing.”

Emily Meyer, with her poems “Degrees of Gray in Philipsburg” by Richard Hugo and “The Gaffe” by C.K. Williams took first. Emily will be traveling to Columbus on March 7th to compete in the state-wide competition. Alexis Jackson took second, Jillian Hammerly took third, and Teresa Wong took 4th.


STEMM Idol Speaker Series

All students are invited Tuesday, Feb. 3 as Hilary Feskanin visits from the University of Dayton. Ms. Feskanin is a senior mechanical engineering major at the University, and has already dipped her toes into the field through a number of co-ps. 

She spent two semesters co-oping in the prosthetics industry, where she fitted patients for lower limb prostheses, made component corrections and repairs, and researched prosthetic components to justify billing codes. She was also part of a team to develop the first ever handheld x-ray scanner for security technology, which allows authorities to scan small spaces or bags at sporting events more easily.

In high school, Ms. Feskanin ran cross country. As an athlete, she watched and experienced many injuries impede training. This inspired her to go into a field where she can study and prevent injuries. One of her goals is to prevent running injuries by studying shoe design, since shoes are the only ‘padding’ worn by a runner.

She is currently pursuing an honors thesis studying the effects of multiple orthotic postings on the midfoot. This sort of research into orthotics will help clinicians prescribe the correct orthotic device, justify financial reimbursement for these treatments, and assist in preventing lower limb conditions.

Come meet Ms. Feskanin present on engineering and her experiences in the field this Tuesday!

Are you interested in becoming a CJ STEMM Idol Speaker Series presenter? Contact Meg Draeger, CJ STEMM coordinator, at (937) 461-3740 x487, or at mdraeger@cjeagles.org.