Amidst roughly 800 people, Cardinal Stritch High School celebrated an important milestone last Thursday, commemorating its 50th year in existence as an educational institution in addition to celebrating the first anniversary of Kateri Catholic Academy.
The 10 a.m. Mass was led by Bishop Leonard P. Blair at the school gymnasium to commemorate the event, and remarks were made by President Eric Schild who spoke about the school, its accomplishments and its vision for the future. Entertainment was also provided by Reverend Jeff McBeth and people were given a tour of the facilities when the event commenced, just before lunch was served.
As the event was finishing up, a drum roll ensued as two six-foot banners were unveiled amongst confetti falling and balloons dropping, revealing the new-look logos of Cardinal Stritch Catholic High School and Kateri Catholic Academy, with each of the students receiving a t-shirt featuring the new logo of the school.
|Fr. Eric Schild, president of Cardinal Stritch Catholic High School and Kateri Academy, (center) poses with (from left) junior Celene Harrison, junior Broghan Gasser, junior Ben Hahn, junior Nathan Wamer, sophomore Kristine Below, junior Shane Goetz, sophomore Olivia Latz and sophomore Alex Veres during the luncheon following the mass and assembly celebrating the high school's 50th anniversary and the first anniversary of Kateri Academy. (Press photo by Scott Grau)|
The logo for Kateri Catholic Academy, a Kindergarten through eighth grade program that was recently added to the school's campus just one year ago, features a cardinal perched on the top, illustrating that the bird is safe at home, but that it is also looking to the future. The new logo, whose design and branding was created by UP Design Group of Toledo, also includes the phrase, "Dues Adjutor Meus,” meaning, "God is my Helper," which was taken from the crest of Stritch's official seal, which symbolizes tradition, respect and a strong foundation, all key tenets of what make the school the strong and proud institution it is today.
From now on, the high school will be known as Cardinal Stritch Catholic High School, helping to further illustrate the focus that the school has on providing a Christian-based education with high academic standards. The high school's logo features the cardinal, whose massive wing symbolizes strength, power and the commitment to continually achieve, four features that represent faith, family, knowledge and strength, as well as the freshman, sophomore, junior and senior classes.
Schild, who was the event's keynote speaker, spoke about the accomplishments of the school, as well as its need to strive for better things as we move forward as it offers a quality, faith-based education to people living in Toledo.
"We want this school to be strong and vibrant, ready to take on the next 50 years of challenge. When a community comes together, amazing things can happen. These past few years have been a time of transition as we combined schools and moved to a pre-K through 12th-grade school campus," said Father Schild. "We have emerged even more dynamic and our new look reflects our strong foundation."
For Schild, he's had to take on quite a bit in just his first year with the school.
"I came from Fostoria St. Wendelin," said Schild, where he served for the past three years as associate pastor and high school chaplain. "When the Bishop called last June (or so), it was a bit of a shock, because I thought I had a year (left) at St. Wendelin. I found the school to have a friendly, inclusive atmosphere, something that is evident when talking to people at the campus.
"A Catholic-centered, Christian-centered, values-based school is what we hope to offer," said Schild "We're always looking for ways to incorporate that through our programs — new senior courtyard, stain-glass windows, new grants from BP Husky to redo the facilities. We want the kids to know that this is not just a secular education. We continue to strive to offer that world-class education."
Stritch was named one of the nation's top top 50 Catholic high schools in 2006 and '07, a remarkable distinction.
"We are a Catholic school and we're proud of that," said Schild. We understand that students want something different. Every student has to (perform) a number of service hours. It can be done here, in the church, in the community. It's not just about them, it's not just about me, it's about this community that God's created.
Every student has to do a number of service hours each year -- at the school, at the church, in the community. We really try to ingrain that it's not just about them, it's about me. We're called to love one another. We have to bring ourselves together."
In the end, Schild best summarized the belief and philosophy that, while the school has accomplished some great things in its 50 years, there is still plenty of work to be done.
"Were doing a wonderful job at it — (but) we can always do better," Fr. Schild said.