November 2015

CJ STEMM Idol: Mike Ooten

While the weather outside might be near freezing, it's time for juniors and seniors to think about the summertime, and in particular, a premier local internship opportunity.

On Tuesday, December 1, Mike Ooten, an aerospace engineer with the Wright Patterson Air Force Base's Air Force Research Laboratory, spoke to students about the Wright Scholar Research Assistant Program as part of the CJ STEMM Idol Speaker Series.

Ooten graduated from The Ohio State University in 2009 and participated in the Wright Scholar program when he was in high school. He is now a mentor for the Wright Scholar program. His wife, Amanda, is a science and PLTW teacher at CJ.

The Wright Scholar program offers studies with a focus on the STEM fields. This past summer, seven CJ students participated in the program.

"This program is unique to Dayton," Ooten said. "The fact that students have this opportunity to work in this program is tremendous. Not every community has something like this."

To qualify, students must be at least 16 years old when the program begins, on June 6, 2016. Students must also have a GPA of 3.5 or higher and fill out an application. All applications must be turned in by January 8, 2016 at 5 p.m. The application can be found here.

"I definitely encourage every student who meets the requirements to apply," Ooten emphasized. "The opportunity is amazing because you are working side by side with real engineers doing real projects. It gives students a leg up on their resumes and in their career."

Ooten added that students in the Wright Scholar program will be paid.

"This is your summer job," Ooten said. "I think it shows responsibility for any student, whether it be in their technical career field or not, to get a summer job. The advantage of this program is that it is in a technical career field and students are networking with future potential employers."

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


Capstone Group Focuses On Sisterhood

Dozens of balloons, popping in succession, could be heard from the Mary, Our Lady of Victory Gym recently. Inside each busted balloon was a positive message for the sophomore girl who did the popping. This activity was done through a Senior Capstone group, with the focus on growing female relationships within CJ.

"We told the girls why sisterhood is important to us," said group member Davida Okyere-Fosu '16. "We put messages into balloons and told them to breath out negative energy. We also asked if they ever said anything bad about someone or if someone has ever said anything bad about them. They popped  their balloon to release negative energy and they shared their message inside the balloon."

Group members said this topic was close to them because they have each encountered or been involved in a negative incident with other girls. 

"It's important to me because I feel it's a better high school experience if you have sisters or good friends to get through things," noted Cara Barney '16.

"I know capstones in the past that have gone to elementary schools and worked on building community in those schools," added the group's mentor, Susan Eichenauer. "I like how this group is working with younger students in our building, in our own community."

"We want the girls to look up to us as big sisters so they can come to us if they ever have any problem," Chekayvia Mooreknight '16 affirmed.

Capstone members said they plan to meet with the group of girls again in January, February and March of 2016. They added that working on this project has made their bond of friendship even stronger.

Tiera McDowell '16 said, "I have been friends with this group since my freshman year. This project has made us closer and we want others to have the same experience."

"If there wasn't the Capstone Project, I would talk about doing something like this but I don't think I would have acted on my words," Akilah Lowe '16 added. "Because of the Capstone, I'm happy for the end result and growing. This project and this topic is very near to my heart so I feel like at the end of the project, I won't be rewarded with something physical, but something within me."

Information about the additional meetings in 2016 will be announced when they are finalized.

Cronin Signs Letter Of Intent

The second senior of the award-winning 2015 women's golf team signed her letter of intent on Tuesday, November 24.

Ellie Cronin '16 will be playing golf for Cleveland State University next year.

"I like that it's in the city," said Cronin. "My sister went there too so I think it's cool that I can have a shot to go where she went."

CJ women's golf coach George Menker '55 said Cronin was one of the top players he has seen in the women's golf program's entire existence.

"She is walking away with five school records - no other girl has done that," Menker noted. "She was co-captain the last two years. She has been a great leader."

This year, the women's golf team qualified for the state tournament for the seventh year in a row. Other accomplishments for the team this season included winning the GCLC, sectional and district tournaments. In their four years, the senior class had a record of 107-6. Cronin earned several individual awards this season including academic all-Ohio, southwest district player of the year, southwest district first team, GCL player of the year and GCL first team.

When thinking about her future team at Cleveland State, Cronin said, "I already knew a lot of the coaches and the other girls are nice, which is similar to the team at CJ."

Menker added, "I will miss her personality, her playing and being the team leader. She has been a super young lady."


CJ STEMM Idol: Elana Chapman '87

A CJ alumna returned to school to share how her career relates to each STEMM field, as part of the STEMM Idol Speaker Series.

Elana Chapman '87 is a Senior Fuels Engineer at General Motors in Pontiac, Michigan.

"I was inspired while at CJ and I want to inspire the next group of scientists and engineers," Chapman said.

While speaking with students on Tuesday, November 24, Chapman recalled how some of the teachers at CJ helped develop techniques she still uses today.

"One of my teachers used to give us assignments in the library," Chapman explained. "He would send us off with 8 or 10 things we had to find in books. Those were really tough challenges but really helped instill my problem solving skills."

After graduating CJ, Chapman received her undergraduate degree, with a focus in mechanical engineering, at the University of Dayton.

"Once I finished at UD, I got a job at Delphi Electronics and Safety in Kokomo, Indiana," Chapman noted. "I liked what I was doing and developed my skills. One of my professors at the University of Dayton suggested I go back to grad school and I did, studying combustion and alternative fuels."

Chapman attended Penn State University for her graduate degrees. She earned a MS in Fuel Science, a MS in Mechanical Engineering and PhD in Fuel Science.  Now working at GM, Chapman told the students she shares her expertise with workers world-wide.

"In a typical day, I begin by answering emails from either overnight or early in the morning," Chapman shared.  "The emails will be from workers in China, Europe, Brazil and Australia, who have technical questions and are trying to find answers from our group in Michigan."

Chapman said other components of her position include creating and testing fuels for engines so they meet emission regulations and working on projects that support answering technical questions about fuel and engine interactions.

At the end of her presentation, Chapman offered this encouragement to students, "If you are going to pursue a career in STEMM, you might struggle, but part of the accomplishment is the struggle. You can't give up on yourself even if you get a bad grade or do you poorly in class; just stay your course. Focus on what your interest is and wanting to be the person you are, and you'll be successful. Follow your heart and what you want to do."

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


Annual Scholarship Breakfast Held

Thank you.

Those two words were said hundreds of times by students on Friday, November 20 as they met with scholarship sponsors. 

The annual scholarship breakfast was an opportunity for sponsors to meet the student recipients of their scholarship. 

"The students realize that they are actually people who have given their money, and the scholarship is not just a form," explained  Ann Szabo '72, who organizes the breakfast each year. "We couldn't even include all the students because there are so many generous gifts given each year."

Jackie (Kuhn) Lawless '57 and Tess (Kuhn) Biersack '67 were just two of dozens of sponsors who attended the scholarship breakfast.

"We found that CJ gave us a very welcoming invitation and we thought this would be fun," Lawless said.

Lawless and Biersack's scholarship, the Mary Kuhn Preotle Scholarship Fund, is in honor of their mother. Taja Ford '18 was the recipient of that scholarship this school year.

"I think it's cool to meet the donors," Ford shared. "It makes getting the scholarship so much better."

Biersack agreed, "It's nice to meet the student who is getting the scholarship. Taja really seems to be enjoying school."

Janet and Don Grieshop '59 met with three students who received their scholarship, the Mary Kathryn and Ernest L. "Hap" Grieshop Fund, which is named after Don's parents.

"I think it's great because they need to know who we are and why we're doing this," Janet explained.

"I feel grateful because they don't have to do it, they want to, which is really nice," said scholarship recipient Kelsey Jones '16.

Brakyla Byrd-Herron '18 agreed, "I feel blessed that there are people like them in the world."

"It makes me feel like I have a lot of support in the community," Marco Espino '16 affirmed.

When speaking to the group of donors and students, Dan Meixner '84, president, said, "This has been a wonderful opportunity to celebrate some of the key hallmarks of what makes Chaminade Julienne special."

"Our students are aware of the legacies and traditions of CJ, but maybe not always as aware of the scholarships," Szabo reflected. "Now, the students are much more aware of their financing for school and the fact that they're receiving scholarships for tuition. This is hopefully something they might strive to continue."

Posted November 20, 2015


CJ Ranked Again In Top 15 Ohio Private High Schools

For the second year in a row, Chaminade Julienne Catholic High School has been ranked as one of the top 15 Best Private High Schools in Ohio by

Each ranking was based upon academics, student culture and diversity, and surveys from parents and students based on overall experience.

"To remain a  top 15 private school in Ohio is a true testimony of the culture we have at Chaminade Julienne," said John Marshall '86, principal. "This ranking reflects our foundation of excellent academics and a faith-filled community."

Chaminade Julienne was ranked 14th overall among all Ohio private schools. This placement made the school the second highest ranked Catholic school in Ohio.

When focusing on the most diverse private high schools, Chaminade Julienne was ranked 1st in Ohio and 16th in the nation.

"We pride ourselves on being located in downtown Dayton so students from all backgrounds can receive the best educational experience in the area," Marshall said.

Other Miami Valley and southwest Ohio private high schools included in the top 100 ranking include:

7. Miami Valley School (Kettering)
13. Summit Country Day (Cincinnati) *
14. Chaminade Julienne
15. St. Xavier (Cincinnati)
16. Cincinnati Hills Christian Academy
17. Ursuline Academy (Cincinnati)
29. Carroll (Riverside)
38. Purcell Marian (Cincinnati) **
39. St. Ursula Academy (Cincinnati)
41. Cincinnati Christian Schools
43. Alter (Kettering)
44. Aldersgate Christian Academy (Cincinnati)
51. Troy Christian
54. Miami Valley Christian Academy (Cincinnati)
55. Lima Central Catholic
57. Badin (Cincinnati)
58. Milford Christian Academy (Cincinnati)
61. Mother of Mercy (Cincinnati)
62. Spring Valley Academy (Centerville)
63. Middletown Christian
64. Mount Notre Dame (Cincinnati) *
67. Roger Bacon (Cincinnati)
72. McNicholas (Cincinnati)
80. Catholic Central (Springfield)
83. Dayton Christian (Miamisburg)
86. Lehman (Sidney)
87. Moeller (Cincinnati) **
95. Elder (Cincinnati)
96. Emmanuel Christian Academy (Springfield)
*Fellow SNDdeN school
**Fellow Marianist school

To learn more about the ranking system, go to


Hunger & Homelessness Awareness Week: Nov. 16 - 23

It's a competition, where everyone, especially those in need, win.

The CJ Hunger Games II: The Fight To End Hunger and Homelessness, will be held Monday, November 16 through Monday, November 23. This year, the week has a theme modeled off "The Hunger Games" movie franchise.

"It's been a couple years since we did a 'Hunger Games' theme," said Jenna Mathile '16. "People had a lot of fun and it got them excited about the week."

The week also correlates with Pope Francis' call to end hunger by 2025.

"It's really cool to see the CJ community participate in this," Mathile added.

While the days during the week have a theme, any contribution will be accepted each day. This year's themes are:

  • November 16: Money Monday
  • November 17: Toiletry Tuesday
  • November 18: Warm Wednesday
  • November 19: Fasting Thursday
  • November 20: Food Friday
  • November 23: Miscellaneous Monday 

"People can connect with each day because they have  themes,"  shared Clare Wade '16.

Along with collecting contributions, there will be other activities connected to bringing awareness about hunger and homelessness. On Monday, November 16, there will be a MLC Monday event called "Hunger Village." The after-school gathering will be a justice simulation examining the discrepancies between the rich and poor. During lunch periods on Thursday, November 19, students have the opportunity to bag lunches for St. Vincent de Paul.

"It makes me feel good because even though I'm hungry, I like knowing that I am giving back," An'Tanae Eke House '16 said about the activity. "I can give up some of my day to help others."

Toiletries and cold weather items collected throughout the week will also be given to St. Vincent de Paul. Food items collected will be delivered to The Dayton Foodbank, and money collected will be given to Oxfam and Catholic Relief Services, which are both international hunger relief organizations.

"We focus our efforts on giving during the holiday season," Sr. Nicole Trahan said. "A lot of people don't think about the shelters that really need things and support in the spring and summer as well. I'm hopeful that Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week inspires everyone to continue giving and be of service throughout the other times of year and not just the holidays."

"It's not important to just focus on this one week, but to carry it on after this week," agreed Eke House. 

CJ In The News!

Watch WDTN's story about Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week.

German Guests Emphasize STEM Opportunities

Three German graduate students, who are in the U.S. for an internship, recently visited CJ to share not only facts about their home country, but their passion for STEM fields.

Sebastian Reif, Andreas Demmel and Dennis Kröber are students at the University of Applied Sciences in Koblenz, Germany. The trio came to the Dayton area in September for an internship at SAS Automation in Xenia. The company president is Anneliese Fisher's '19 father.

"The company also has an office in Germany," said Reif. "We wrote a letter to the company and we were accepted for an internship here."

During their visit to CJ, Reif, Demmel and Kröber spoke with German class students about the similarities and differences between Germany and the U.S.

"The cultures are very similar, and everyone has been friendly," Reif explained. "The biggest difference is the food."

"It's a nice opportunity for them to talk about the German culture with their experience of coming to the U.S.,  but also to be able to share some of their STEM skills with our students too," said German teacher Katie Harding.

After talking in the German classes, the trio shared their background in the STEM fields as part of the STEMM Idol Speaker Series.

"There is a focus on the STEM fields in Germany as well," Reif told the group of students.

Reif shared that while his undergraduate had a focus on engineering, Demmel and Kröber chose to study business for their undergraduate degree.

"Both areas are important to have a background in for engineers," shared Kröber.

The trio said another benefit to their internship has been the opportunity to improve their English-speaking skills.

Harding added, "I hope our students understand what they can be able to do with German, and see how being bilingual can really open up a lot of doors for your career. "


1930 Julienne Graduates Reunited

It was a reunion dozens of years in the making.

“Mary Margaret, Mary Margaret!” Wilhelmina Dix said in excitement as she reunited with classmate Mary Margaret Toohey on Tuesday, November 10. “I would recognize you from anywhere!”

The pair are the last known living graduates of the Julienne Class of 1930. Mary Margaret, who lives at the St. Leonard Living Community, recently told her daughter-in-law, Audrey Toohey, that she was hoping to reconnect with Dix.  

“I knew Annette Casella, who is a relative of Willie’s,” Audrey said. “We made the arrangements and here we all are today!”

The reunion doubly served as a birthday celebration for Wilhelmina, who will turn 104 on Friday, November 13.

“God is good,” Wilhelmina emphasized.

Both Mary Margaret and Wilhelmina’s families have had generations of relatives pass through the doors of Chaminade, Julienne, and CJ. Wilhelmina’s great-great-niece, Logan Dix ’17, also came to the celebration on Tuesday.

“It was unbelievable to see Willie and Mary Margaret,” Logan said. “To see someone this long after high school, is unimaginable.”

Annette, who is a 1960 graduate of Julienne, agreed with Logan.

“I don’t know how else to express it other than incredible,” Annette said. “The family connection is strong.”

After enjoying birthday cake, the classmates continued to share fond memories of their time together at Julienne. When asked about what their secret to longevity was, both women agreed on the same answer.

“Be happy.”

You can view more photos from the reunion here.


Fall Sports Season Recap

From trips to state, to big plays and wins over competitors, the fall sports season at CJ was an exciting one. Learn more below about the accomplishments and coaches' thoughts on the season.

The men's cross country varsity team had top finishes in both the GCL Championship race and Southwest District Tournament race. The varsity team placed fourth out of eight teams in the GCL Championship race with Duncan Burke '17, Mike Carper '16 and Jack Dalton '17 earning second team All-GCL honors for their times. At the Southwest District Tournament, Dalton, with his finishing place, qualified for the regional tournament.  During that race, he had a time of 17:00 and placed 35th overall.

The women's cross country team also had a runner recognized post-season. Maura Peck '17 was selected for the All-GCL first team after finishing in the top five or better with her times at the GCL meet, Fairmont Firebird / Neal Charske Invitational, and Brookville Invitational.

"We had a young team this year with a lot of opportunity for new runners to gain valuable varsity experience," said assistant coach Dan Eiser. "The girls worked hard and it paid off at the end of the season."

Eiser added that at the GCL meet, every Eagle had the fastest time of their season.

"That is extremely rare, not just for CJ, but for any team," Eiser noted.

The football team had four players earn post-season honors this season. LB captain Josh Simons '16, was named to the All-GCL first team after leading the Eagles in tackles with 74. Three players were named to the All-GCL second team - LB Adam Oppy '16, QB Ryan Peltier '18, and DL Derson Pratt '16. The Eagles went 2-8 this season.

“There is no doubt that this year was a tough one," said head coach Marcus Colvin. "I was impressed and encouraged with my student-athletes' ability to be resilient. While we dealt with lots of adversity, our young men continued to be positive and worked to get better every day."

Other highlights of the season were Peltier throwing for 1,194 yards and five touchdowns, RB Jacquel Freeman-Parks '17 leading the Eagles in rushing with 711 yards, and WR Miles Joiner '17 leading the team in receiving with 30 receptions for 337 yards.

Colvin added, "As I told our underclassmen, use this year as a catalyst to what this program can be in the coming years... Bring on Roger Glass Stadium!”

The men's golf team had two players who were recognized by the GCL. Andrew Detmer '19 and Aaron Gerhard '17 earned second team  All-GCL honors.  This season, the men's dual meet record was 3-6, and the team finished fourth out of eight teams at the GCL tournament.

"Although our record may not reflect it, we performed well against many strong teams this season," said head coach Ben Davies. "More importantly, though, we represented ourselves and our school at high standard competitively and with good sportsmanship."

The men's and women's golf teams' scores combined earned them the overall winner at the Diana Schwab Invitational on August 25.

The women's golf team made a seventh straight trip to the state tournament this season. Along with winning the conference, the team also took first place in the sectional and district tournaments. The team record was 30-2 with the two losses against DI schools.

Several members of the women's golf team earned post-season honors including:

Ellie Cronin '16

  • GCL Player of the Year
  • All-GCL first team
  • Academic All Ohio
  • Dayton Daily News Player of the Week (October 1)
  • SW District first team
  • SW District Player of the Year

Colleen Wagoner '16

  • All-GCL first team
  • Academic All Ohio
  • SW District honorable mention

Lizzi Yeazel '16

  • All-GCL first team
  • Academic All Ohio
  • SW District first team

Sara Sue Bowman '17

  • All-GCL second team
  • SW District honorable mention

Aryana Sutton '18

  • All-GCL first team

Head Coach George Menker '55 was also honored with the SW District Coach of the Year.

The men's soccer team, under new head coach Alex VanderSluijs, finished 8-8-2 this season, making it the first .500 season since 2007. Big wins for the Eagles this season came against Northmont, Fairmont, Oakwood and Bishop Fenwick. The team also had the lowest goal against average since 2003. The team made it to the second round of the sectional tournament.

Jake Murray '16 earned All-GCL first team and All-Miami Valley first team post season honors. Nick Barnes '17 was also selected for the All-GCL first team while Yusef Muqtadir '18 and Matt Weckesser '16 were  selected for the All-GCL second team.

The women's soccer team finished this season 5-10-3. The season started with injuries to two players who both were four year letter winners , Katie Settich '16 and Anna Money '16.  While both women returned in the fifth game of the season, the team had several other injuries during the year. The women's soccer team also made it to the second round of the sectional tournament.

"The team played an attractive possession oriented attacking formation but really struggled all year  scoring goals," said head coach Roy Craig. "The team stayed focused and improved throughout the year."  

Money earned post-season honors including All-GCL first team, SW District first team and All-Dayton South first team. Logan Dix '17 was also selected for the All-GCL first team and All-Dayton South second team. Manisha Kullar '16 earned an All-Dayton South honorable mention while Taylor Burrows '16 and Kayte Jackson '17 were selected for the All-GCL second team.

The women's tennis team had another successful season, finishing as the GCLC champions and district runner-up in the state team tournament. The team was ranked first in the area in Division II and fifth in the state of Ohio.

Kelly Pleiman '17 qualified individually for the state tournament for the second year in a row after finishing first in the sectional tournament and second in the district tournament. Pleiman was recognized in the post-season earning All-GCL first team honors and first team all area for the Miami Valley region.

Several other members of the women's tennis team received post-season honors including:

Brianna  Douglas '17

  • All-GCL first team
  • All-Miami Valley second team

Kat Dranchak '16

  • All-GCL first team
  • All-Miami Valley honorable mention

Amanda Draeger '16 and Alexis Robinson '17

  • All-GCL first team
  • All-Miami Valley first team

Olivia Boch '18 and Lydia Bice '18 

  • All-GCL second team
  • All-Miami Valley second team

Head coach Jim Brooks was named the All-GCL Coach of the Year.

The women's volleyball team finished the season with an advancement to the second round of the sectional tournament. Anna Miller '16 was selected to the All-GCL first team, while Jillian Hammerly '16 and Emilie Nevius '16 were selected to the All-GCL second team.

Great season, Eagles!