Ever since 1890, Saint Joseph Academy has been effectively educating and empowering young women to become leaders. The impact of a single sex education is undeniable. When you take boys out of the equation, you encounter an environment that provides more opportunities to girls. In a society that expects and encourages leadership from men, but labels women who take on leadership roles as “bossy,” it’s extremely powerful to be in a school where girls occupy any and every role. Your elected student council president? A girl. The members of your class leadership team? Girls. The students in your Honors Independent Study Engineering Class? All girls.
The four years spent in high school are the most impactful years of a person’s life. When these crucial, developmental years are spent surrounded by driven, intelligent, and confident young women, it can have a lasting impact. Saint Joseph Academy not only fundamentally fosters this type of education simply by being an all-girls school, but also encourages its students to push the boundaries of our own perceived limitations. Shooting for the stars can be scary, but when you’re doing it surrounded by your supportive sisters at Saint Joseph Academy, the risks don’t seem so scary anymore.
At Saint Joseph Academy, we are encouraged to become performers, innovators, trailblazers, and most of all, leaders. A perfect example of this would be my own growth that I’ve experienced while attending school here for the past four years. Looking back on my freshman year, I was shy, insecure, nervous, and couldn’t wait to graduate high school. I was determined to keep my head down and plow through my classes so I could graduate and move onto bigger and better things. Now here I am, four years later preparing to do just that, and I don’t want to leave.
Throughout the past four years, I have been challenged inside the classroom and out. Attending a school surrounded by such incredibly talented young women has inspired me to work harder and be more resilient than I ever have before. Thanks to the encouragement I’ve received from my school community, I’ve taken on a lead role in the fall play, co-founded the Academy Inclusion support group, and formed lasting relationships with my fellow students and teachers. If my freshman year self saw me now, she’d be blown away by the strong woman that Saint Joseph Academy has molded me into. And my story is not unique. Almost every senior that I know has had a similar experience at this school.
Saint Joseph Academy does truly amazing things for the students that enter its front doors. Every year, it welcomes a new incoming class and empowers them so that, when the time comes, they will walk down Rocky River Drive carrying with them not only a dozen roses, but also the strength of all the extraordinary women who have gone before them. As my time at Saint Joseph Academy comes to a close and I prepare to embark on that meaningful journey down Rocky River Drive myself, I have only one thing left to say to my soon-to-be alma mater: Thank you.