December 2015

Capstone Group Makes, Gives Blankets To Cincinnati Students

The cutting of scissors could be heard as dozens of students divided material to make blankets after school earlier this month. The blankets weren't going home with the CJ students, they were being made for students in preschool and kindergarten classes at Ethel M. Taylor Academy in Cincinnati.

The project was initiated by Brooke Cartone, Ellie Cronin, Manisha Kullar, Allison Huffman, and Lauren Peltier's Senior Capstone group.

"We wanted to do something for Christmas," explained Huffman. "We will be donating some toys, soccer shorts and soccer balls too. But we wanted to make blankets so the kids could have something they could use and it will hopefully be a meaningful gift to them."

"When we give the kids blankets, especially if they didn't have one before, I think they will be happy," added Cronin.

The group chose to make the blankets for the students in Cincinnati after the group's mentor, Emily Saunders, showed them an article about the school's needs.

"Our group talked about how in the article, it said kids were coming into school with no socks," shared Kullar. "That's hard to imagine."

Cronin noted, "That's why when we decided to make the blankets, we thought about making them a yard or a yard and-a-half and we chose a yard and-a-half.  We didn't want this to be a onetime use; we definitely want them to use it longer."

Several members of the Dayton Catholic Women's Club not only contributed some of the materials for the blankets, but they assisted in making them as well. 

"The blankets will be used for the under-privileged and that's what we strive for, to help children and young people," said Ruth Galyon, a board member with the Dayton Catholic Women's Club.

Huffman added, "We are thankful for the Dayton Catholic Women's Club. It means a lot that they were here making the blankets with us."

When looking ahead to next year's capstone groups, Kullar said, "We are hoping another group will take on this project and do the same thing for the other students at Taylor Academy. Eventually, all the grades might be able to have blankets."

St. Joe's Grad Receives Diploma For Christmas

It was a gift Jeanne Schenkel Calhoun '61 wasn't expecting under the Christmas tree.

"Never has any gift, I am aware of, moved her as much as this gift," said Jeanne's daughter, Beth Calhoun.

Beth’s mother graduated from St. Joseph Commercial High School but had never received her original diploma, until this Christmas.

"She didn't discuss it all the time, but she brought it up before that although she graduated, she did not have her actual diploma," shared Beth. 

After making phone calls to the Archdiocese of Cincinnati and the CJ business office, Beth found out that the reason her mother had not received her original diploma initially had been forgiven, so Jeanne was eligible to receive the actual diploma.

Jeanne's original diploma could not be found, so with the help of the Archdiocese and several CJ employees, a new diploma was created.

"It's more beautiful than what I pictured," Beth said when she picked up the diploma on Wednesday, December 23. "The seal, the signature, I can't believe she will finally get to receive this." 

Ann Szabo '72, who helped in the process said, "There is something to be said about caring. Knowing I would do whatever I could for my mother, it's nice to make sure your mom has a wonderful gift."

"It's not all about gifts, but also the time you spend with family," Beth emphasized. "Still, there is something childlike about Christmas and to get a gift from your parents. I bought a gift for my father which I signed from his mom and dad. My mom's diploma was signed from her mom and dad.

"The way that it all came together, this goes back to how we were raised and faith because it was a miracle," Beth added. "We believe many divine forces came together to make this happen."

Photos Courtesy: Beth Calhoun



CJ Baseball Winter Camp

The 2015 GCL North-winning CJ varsity baseball players spent the first two days of their winter break mentoring and coaching younger baseball players eager to learn more about the sport.

The CJ baseball winter camp was split into two sessions this year; one for students in Grades 3-5 and the other for students in Grades 6-8.

"We thought it would be better to split the campers up that way they can focus on what they are able to do ability-wise," said CJ assistant varsity baseball coach Mike Hoendorf '03.

The camp was held in the Student Conditioning Center for a second year. While at camp, players were taught the fundamentals of the sport, how to be a good teammate and how to learn from experiences in life.

Shawn Steffan '16, who has played varsity baseball for two years, said he enjoyed spending time with the younger baseball players.

"I liked teaching the kids more about baseball because you can tell they love the sport," Steffan shared.  "It also helped us further our leadership skills so we can help lead each other and lead these younger players."

Hoendorf added, "I think it's a two-way street. For the younger kids, a varsity baseball player is seen as someone they can look up to. For the high school players, it reinforced their fundamental skills by teaching the younger players."

Steffan noted that the camp also helped bring the CJ team closer together.

"The camp helped us learn more about basics, so we don't forget anything," Steffan said. "It helped build team unity as well."

Click on the pictures below to view photos from this year's camp. 








Coach Staley Honored For Win 400

On Friday, December 18, in front of a sold out crowd of students, parents, alumni, and supporters, head men's basketball coach Joe Staley '72 was recognized for his 400th win at CJ.

"The team would not be the same without Joe," said assistant varsity coach Charlie Szabo '98. "We have had a good tradition, but this current CJ basketball is all him - he has built this."

Staley came back to CJ to be the head men's basketball coach in 1985. His first game was against Carroll, the same school the Eagles defeated on Friday with a score of 57-50.

Tony Ricciuto '74 coached alongside Staley for several years.

"Joe was teaching at Alter when he came to CJ to be the head coach," Ricciuto recalled. "We played Alter in one of the last games of that year. Alter was ranked number one in the state and we upset them."

Bill Reichert '92 had Staley as a coach and then later had the opportunity to coach alongside him.

"He had high expectations for all of us," Reichert explained. "His expectations in terms of how we conducted ourselves, our timeliness, how we treated others and of course our competitive ferocity were often higher than what we expected out of ourselves. These were great life lessons."

Szabo agreed, "As a player I think what stuck with me was how knowledgeable he was and how driven and committed he was to making us better. On the court, we always played hard because of him. We were never afraid because of him and we were always prepared because of him. He was a lot of fun to play for because of that."

During his time at CJ, Staley has also had the opportunity to coach his two sons, Joe '10 and John '12.

"My favorite part about having Dad be my coach at CJ was my senior year when my brother, John, was a sophomore with me on the team," Staley '10 shared. "I got to do one of the things I loved most, every day, with two of the people I love the most- that's play basketball at Chaminade Julienne.

"CJ basketball has been our entire lives. Since we could walk we were in the CJ gym with Dad.  Growing up, my mother, siblings, and I would go to all of the CJ games.  So for CJ basketball to be such a huge part of our lives growing up, and then to get to be a part of it alongside Dad and John, was very special."

Ricciuto added, "One of my favorite memories has been watching Joe coach his sons. It's been fun because our families have grown up together. I've enjoyed watching him coach and he has been my mentor. When I got to be a head coach, I employed a lot of things he taught."

Reichert noted, "The part that most people don’t know is that Joe appears to be (and is) gruff and cantankerous towards his players and of course referees during games, but there is another side.  To my knowledge there has never been a kid turned down for camp who could not afford it, there has never been a kid who asked to get in the gym for extra time that he did not try to make it happen and finally, being a devoted Catholic with an unbelievable wife, Mick, and family, he has proven that he cares deeply about the CJ community and the broader Dayton community.  There will be those who have not liked his coaching style or how many minutes their son played, but if they asked their son now if Joe cared about them on the court and in the classroom, they would have trouble denying it."

"I think he does a tremendous job of not just teaching these high school students the game of basketball, but he also teaches them life lessons every single day," Staley '10 emphasized ." He teaches on things like how to be disciplined, being accountable, putting forth a complete effort, being prepared, and among other things, perhaps a more subtle message, the importance of enjoying what you do in life. I'm not sure he could coach forty plus years if he did not enjoying it."

From the Chaminade Julienne community, congratulations Coach Staley on 400 wins!


Mr. Universe Speaks With CJ Wrestlers

"In order to win, you have to have strength."

R.D. Caldwell Junior knows a thing or two about what it takes to have strength. Caldwell, the 2014 NPC Mr. Universe middleweight and overall champion, recently spoke with the CJ wrestling team and shared his nutrition tips along with what motivates him.

"I saw Caldwell recently at the YMCA," shared CJ Wrestling Head Coach Larry Dryden. "I have known him since he was in grade school. So when I saw him, I asked him to talk to the wrestlers about proper nutrition; but I believe they got a whole lot more out of his talk."

Caldwell began his presentation with a prayer and then talked to the wrestlers about his nutrition plan.

"I earned my pro-card naturally, no steroids or growth-hormones," Caldwell affirmed. "If you eat the right food, you'll be better on the mat and in the classroom."

Caldwell was only the third middleweight champion to be named an overall champion in the Mr. Universe bodybuilding competition. He told the wrestlers he has been lifting weights since he was 14 years old and began participating in bodybuilding competitions in 2002.

"I attribute my faith in God first, but I also attribute my nutrition to why I am undefeated in power lifting," explained Caldwell.  "A lot of power lifters eat junk and I always eat clean and healthy."

Caldwell also encouraged the wrestlers to surround themselves by people who push them in the right direction.

"My father asked me, 'What does it take to be a champion?'" Caldwell said. "At the end of a match, if you know you have given it your all, you can walk away saying 'I gave 100%.' I feel that at the end, that is what makes you a champion."

Dryden reflected about Caldwell's presentation and said, "I hope the wrestlers are inspired by him. I want that inspiration to carry them through the season."


2015 Last 5 Luncheon

Memories, laughs, chili and soups were in full supply as members of the Classes of 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015 gathered for the Last 5 Luncheon on Thursday, December 17.

"This school gave me my education so I wanted to come back," shared Faith White '15, who now attends Wright State University.

This was the fourth year the alumni & development office invited students from the last five graduating classes to a luncheon.

"It's great to see the young graduates excited about what we are doing at CJ," shared alumni relations coordinator Teresa Spanel '10. "They enjoy seeing the new renovations too."

The luncheon was the first opportunity for many of the alumni to see the newly renovated cafeteria and other Building One improvements. The gathering also served as a time for teachers to reconnect with their past students.

"I was excited to see the teachers, other students and reconnect," said Emily Meyer '15, who now attends Tulane University.

Spanel added, "I love that teachers are welcoming the graduates back because it gives them the opportunity to catch up as well."

Both Meyer and White agreed they would like to come to this event again.

"It's great to see the last five classes come together and recognize people from the class above or below," reflected Spanel.

You can see pictures from the 2015 Last 5 Luncheon here.


Crèches From Around The World on Display at CJ

This Christmas season, four crèches from around the world were placed in the offices of Marianist Hall and in the chapel. The crèches are on loan from the Marianist Library at the University of Dayton.

Teacher Nancy Dever, who is also a co-coordinator of CJ's Mission Integration Team, said she first heard about the Marianist Library's crèche loan program while attending the Marianist Education Consortium conference at UD in the summer of 2010. CJ has been a part of the Marianist Library's loan program ever since.

Each year, CJ is given different crèches to be placed around the school.

"We do not have a choice in the crèches; however, Jean Nickelman, a volunteer with the Marianist Library who helps coordinate the program, is always on the lookout for crèches that she feels would be good for CJ," said Dever. "For example, the display in the chapel is from the Amazon. She thought we would enjoy that one because it was where Sr. Dorothy did much of her missionary work." 

The crèche in the chapel is named "Amazon Christmas" and is from Peru. In the business office, a small crèche named "Salamanca House Nativity," from Spain, is on display. The crèche in the St. Joseph Conference Room is named "Out of Tokien" and is from Germany. In the development office, the crèche is from Mexico and named "Mariachi Nativity." 

When looking at the Mexican crèche, Olivia Tanksley '18 said, "I like that it is different from nativity scenes you would normally see. I like that there is a mariachi band in the display."

Dever added, "I think the crèches can give the school community an appreciation of the significance of Jesus' birth, and how his word touches all parts of the globe.  I think seeing how the different cultures represent the nativity show us what a universal story Jesus' birth."  

You can click the pictures below to get a closer look at each crèche.





AP Students Attend Biology Seminar

As new scientific discoveries are made every day, it's difficult to quickly pass that information on in a classroom setting. That's why when teacher Amanda Ooten was presented information about a seminar focusing on recent findings in biology, she and four AP biology students were eager for the opportunity.

Ooten along with Abby Arestides '17, Jillian Hammerly '16, Kelly Pleiman '16, and Megan Stefan '17 attended the "Top Biotechnology Discoveries and Applications of 2015" seminar at Kettering College earlier this school year.

"I was intrigued that it was so up-to-date," said Ooten. "In AP Biology, we are confined to the curriculum and have little time to discuss current scientific advancements. These are often much more relevant, significant, and interesting than the basics of the textbook. While the basics are important and necessary to understanding more complex ideas, it is very worthwhile to expose these students to what science is doing today."

"The seminar focused a lot on what we're learning in class about medical interventions," reinforced Arestides. "We have a small class at CJ so it was fun interacting with the other AP biology students as well."

Stefan added, "The seminar applied to what we are learning so it expanded my knowledge in biology."

"It was cool to learn about recent discoveries, taking what we learned in class and applying it in real life," noted Hammerly.

Dr. Neil Lamb, the Vice President of Educational Outreach at HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology in Hunstville, Alabama, was the speaker at the seminar.

"The seminar was perfect; it had interesting topics presented in a manner that were easy to understand," Ooten shared. "There was ample time for questions and answers as well."

Stefan added, "Dr. Lamb made the subjects very approachable and he related the material to us."

"When other students would ask a question I could relate because I was usually thinking the same thing," Arestides said.

The seminar was geared towards AP biology students who are interested in the physician assistant (PA) career field after graduation.

"A PA is between a nurse practitioner and a doctor," explained Hammerly. "They can work in a variety of different positions and can do a lot of tasks that doctors can do, they just don't have a MD."

Hammerly and Stefan both expressed interest in studying to become a PA after graduation.

Another seminar opportunity may be organized for the spring, Ooten added.


CJ Group Wins Financial Investing Competition

$100,000 is a lot of money for any one. While if given the opportunity, some may choose to spend it, a recent assignment in Don MacLeod’s financial investing class had students looking for ways to invest that amount of money and make a profit.

The assignment was in conjunction with the University of Dayton’s Davis Center portfolio high school competition.

“We went to the Davis Center to present in front of college students and professors,” explained Jalen Sheeler '18.

A senior vice president from Merrill Lynch was also in the audience for the final presentations.

Two groups from CJ qualified for this competition and one group won the top prize.

Tim Menker '16, Jacob Murray '16, Morgan Rogers '16, and Thomas Wilimitis '16, named their group “The Hot Tips.” Those students performed the best out of 30 other teams in the Dayton-area.

“We were given points on our portfolio and our presentation was the other half of our final score,” said Menker.

"The Hot Tips" made a $13,000 profit on their $100,000 investment in a two-month period.

“It was kind of exciting to look at all the stocks and once you see your money going up, it was kind of a rush,” described Rogers.

The second group from CJ, "Prophets of Profit," consisted of Kendall Harrison '16, Lionel Nsilulu '16 and Sheeler. That group was ranked fifth before the final presentation on Tuesday, December 8.

“It was a good opportunity because it allowed us to invest into the real stock market and compete against other groups’ portfolios,” Harrision said.

Wilimitis agreed, "A lot of other students in the competition did really well with real-world profits that actual investors would be happy to get.”

While many of the seniors are still deciding on their plans for next year, most agreed that this project reflected something they would like to continue doing after graduation.

"Even if we’re not doing something directly with this, it could be something we do on the side saving up for retirement," Murray said.

"This assignment wasn't just about picking stocks," explained MacLeod.  "The students had to do research to be successful. I believe CJ helped prepare the students based upon the way they presented their findings and how they interacted with students from other schools during the competition."


Sounds of the Season Christmas Concert

Chaminade Julienne Performing Arts presents Sounds of the Season on Thursday, Dec. 10, 2015 at 7 p.m. in the CJ Auditorium.

This free Christmas concert will feature popular sacred and secular songs including "Go Tell it on the Mountain," "Do You Hear What I Hear" and "Home for Christmas." Performing arts groups taking the stage for this concert include the concert choir, concert band, liturgical choir, string ensemble, Hands in Harmony, a cappella groups and the Busted Box Improv Troupe. CJ's newest performing arts group, jazz band, will be making their debut at this concert. 

Those who attend the concert are invited for refreshments following the performance.