October 2016

Eagles Tennis Player Nets Fourth-Place State Finish

Eagles first singles player Kelly Pleiman capped her senior season with a fourth-place Division II singles finish at the OHSAA Girls State Tennis Championships at the Lindner Family Tennis Center in Mason.

As a state placer, Kelly joins elite company – both at Chaminade Julienne and in the Pleiman family. Kelly’s fourth-place state finish matched that of sister Katie’s best singles finish in 2008. Big sisters Christie ‘07 and Katie ‘09 did, however, place second in doubles in 2006 when Christie was a senior and Katie a sophomore. Katie also placed second in doubles in 2007 with Nicci Dresden, ‘10.

Coach Jim Brooks – who has known Kelly since she was a young girl cheering on her big sisters – was not at all surprised to see her playing in her third state tournament last week.

“She works very hard,” Brooks said. “And it paid off.”

After bowing out in the first round the past two seasons, Kelly’s biggest goal this year was to advance to the state semifinals. She fought to a 6-4, 0-6, 6-1 first-round win Friday followed by a less taxing 6-4, 6-2 straight-set quarterfinal win to advance to the semifinals.

“I was so motivated to get to Saturday,” she said.

While her high school tennis career is over, Pleiman plans to play in college.

Brooks knows he has big shoes to fill as Kelly – after three seasons at first singles – closed out the Pleiman era at CJ. The Eagles, who qualified six players to the district tournament, will lose four seniors to graduation.

“Life gets tougher for me, that’s for sure,” Brooks said.

Spotlight on Industrial and Systems Engineering

She always enjoyed math and science, but it wasn’t until she was in college that Samantha Hedges found her calling.

Problem solving and implementing solutions – Hedges does both as a hub industrial engineer at FedEx Ground. Hedges – who earned a bachelor’s degree in industrial and systems engineering from Ohio University in 2008 – helped Chaminade Julienne students get a head start in the engineering field by sharing her experience as a recent STEMM Idol speaker.

“I didn’t know what industrial engineering was when I was in high school, I found it in college,” Hedges said. “But the more you can get exposed to new fields and opportunities, the better.”

Hedges spoke about industrial and systems engineering, the "improvement engineers" who work in many different industries, including manufacturing, logistics, retail, restaurants, health care, and the financial industry. Like many engineering professionals, Hedges got her start as an intern in 2009.

“It definitely helped me get my foot in the door,” she said. “It was very valuable in terms of exposure and understanding the etiquette of the corporate world.”

FedEx Ground specializes in small package handling, sorting, and shipping. Its network moves millions of packages each day utilizing some of the most advanced technology and engineering techniques to work effectively and efficiently. Hedges, who manages a region that includes Dayton, Cincinnati, Lexington and Louisville, helps devise the best ways to sort millions of packages for shipping.

Hard Work Pays Off for the Eagles

There were those who thought it wouldn’t be their year, but the Chaminade Julienne Eagles thought otherwise.

For the eighth consecutive season – a state record – the CJ women’s golf team advanced to the OHSAA Girls Division II State Golf Championship. The Eagles placed 6th overall at the Ohio State University Gray Golf Course on October 15. Coach George Menker, in his 10th season with the Eagles, attributes that success to one thing.

“The amount of practice these girls put in is incredible,” Menker said. “They work at it, they work every day to improve.”

While the girls’ golf season doesn’t kick off until August, the CJ golfers begin conditioning in January. By April, they are on the range and by June, the Eagles are regulars at the Miami Valley Golf Club.

“They want to improve, so they put in the time,” Menker said.

Individually, the Eagles were led at the state tournament by junior Blake Wogoman – a volleyball player turned golfer – with a 17th-place individual finish, just seven strokes outside of the Top 10 with a 165 36-hole total.

CJ loses only one of its five state golfers to graduation, senior Sara Bowman, and will return four state-savvy juniors. That bodes well for extending the state-qualifying streak.

"I'm pretty sure we will be there next year," Menker said.


CJ Community Comes Up Big at Pinkout

“Real men wear pink,” or at least that’s what the CJ faculty and staff members were saying on Friday night.

Under the bright lights of Roger Glass Stadium - Home of the Chaminade Julienne Eagles, principal John Marshall '86 and PULSE volunteer Dominic Sanfilippo smiled broadly as pink hair coloring dripped down their faces. Greg Mueller, administrator of the Office of Student Services and Student Life, and science teachers Eric Grimm and Matthew Fuhs even let their beards be painted pink. And English teacher Dan Eiser and math teacher Alan Rozanski were quick to show off their dance moves as the crowd cheered them on. 

It was all in good fun and for a good cause at CJ’s PINKOUT benefitting the Pink Ribbon Girls. The student council sponsored event raised more than $2,500 to benefit the organization by selling PINKOUT shirts and other Stop Breast Cancer and pink ribbon items and by collecting donations at the football game Friday.

“We set the goal of $1,000, so raising $2,500 was awesome,” said Angela Ruffolo, student council moderator.

The Pink Ribbon Girls got its start when founder Tracie Metzger and executive director Heather Salazar realized there was no specific group for young women dealing with breast cancer. Pink Ribbon Girls provide family members with services to ease the workload of daily life – like meals, housekeeping or transportation – while providing access to peer support so they may be informed and comforted by others with similar experiences.

The night also included honoring all cancer survivors at the game including Kat Zehenny, assistant to the CJ athletic director, and CJ parent Jackie Banks.

“The night was a big success,” Ruffolo said. “Hopefully, the pink hair color washed out.”

STEMM Idol Speaker Shares Insights with Students

Getting a head start on the college search can pay off for students.

“I suggest students start visiting colleges or, at least, compiling a list of schools they are interested in between their sophomore and junior years,” said Brandon Pytel, program coordinator at the University of Cincinnati College of Engineering and Applied Science.

Pytel recently visited CJ, as part of the STEMM Idol Speaker Series, to discuss career opportunities in engineering and applied sciences and share insights as to the college prep work that is needed to qualify for such programs.  Four credits of math, with a minimum of pre-calculus, three credits in science and a 3.75 GPA or better are just a few of the must-haves for competitive programs like those at the University of Cincinnati CEAS. 

The University of Cincinnati College of Engineering and Applied Science is a National Science Foundation Top 30 Public Research Institution. Their co-op program ranks among the top programs in the country, enabling more than 600 employers to connect with qualified engineering students. Programs include aerospace engineering, architectural engineering and biomedical engineering to name a few.

But taking advantage of those opportunities requires hard work and preparation. Pytel stressed the importance of students taking their high school academics seriously from Day 1.

“Higher education is getting incredibly competitive,” Pytel said. “You need to be proactive and make sure you are getting the right classes in.”

Chaminade Julienne has seen an increasing number of students attend UC in recent years from just two in 2013 to 18 this year.


PULSE Volunteers Answer the Call

Marianist PULSE volunteers have their finger on the pulse of the Dayton community.

PULSE – which stands for Partners in Urban Leadership, Service and Education –is a post-graduate, servant leadership and social justice initiative sponsored by the Marianists. It’s a means of sharing the Marianist charism through energetic volunteers who want to make a positive impact on an urban community. This new program was launched in 2015 with the volunteers beginning their service earlier this year.

PULSE volunteers make a one- or two-year commitment to live in community in a lower-income Dayton neighborhood. They work full-time at a local nonprofit agency, gaining valuable leadership and career skills along the way.

Three PULSE volunteers – Ani Artero, Kateri Dillon ‘12 and Dominic Sanfilippo – recently shared their experience with Chaminade Julienne students. Artero is working with the Rivers Institute at the University of Dayton, Dillon is volunteering at the Brunner Literacy Center and Sanfilippo is at CJ.

“PULSE is a unique opportunity to set aside a whole year and focus on service,” Dillon said. “And being part of the Marianist family means we have support systems not only in Dayton but across the country and around the world.”

The life of a PULSE volunteer includes:
♦  Gathering for meals and prayer in the house community.
♦  Living simply in solidarity with the poor and marginalized.
♦  Engaging in a weekly Marianist formation program.
♦  Journeying alongside a spiritual mentor.
♦  Experiencing the passion and satisfaction of working for social justice.

For Sanfilippo, being able to make service a part of his everyday life is ideal.

“It’s such an adventure,” he said. “It’s such a meaningful and rewarding way to take a year out of your live to make a difference.”

Fall Phonathon Supports Annual Fund

It’s more than a phone call – it’s an opportunity to make a difference.

The annual fall Phonathon gets underway October 16 with more than 100 volunteers – students, faculty, staff, graduates and parents – making calls to increase the ranks of the thousands of supporters who remember Chaminade Julienne each year through a gift to the Annual Fund.

“Your generous contributions through Phonathon go directly to assisting students and providing CJ with the funding necessary to maintain its excellent educational programs,” said Elaine Bonner, Annual Giving Coordinator.

A Phonathon call is also an opportunity to reconnect with CJ.  Hear about the exciting additions like the newly renovated auditorium, reconnect with reunion year classmates and discover how faith formation priorities spread beyond the classroom and into the Dayton community.

Phonathon callers will likely make a total of 15,000 calls over the 12-day drive – a daunting task that is well worth the effort.

“Through the investment of our devoted faculty and staff, alumni, current and former parents and community friends, our collective giving allows CJ to continue to be a leader for excellence in Catholic education,” Bonner said. “Excellence you can see in and out of our classrooms as we embrace our mission to work for justice, value all people and serve as models of faith in action at all times.”

Gifts to the CJ Annual Fund supplement tuition and benefit every student through innovative learning programs and integrative service and mission experiences. 

“Our students realize and appreciate the investment others make on their behalf,” Bonner said.  “Support through the Annual Fund keeps the mission of our founders strong for our students and the entire CJ community.”

Performing Arts Parents Group - PoPS - Cultivates Support for the Arts

The Phillips family is all-in when it comes to performing arts.

Seniors Clara and Noah are both in the Chaminade Julienne Concert Band – Noah plays saxophone and Clara plays baritone, oboe and electric bass. Clara is also an Eagle Pride drum major, plays double bass with the Strings Ensemble and sings with Vega. Eighth grader Natalie plays snare drum with Eagle Pride. Mark Phillips – also known as dad – is the president of Parents of Performing Arts Students (PoPS) and his wife Liz is the group’s food coordinator.

Mark and Liz follow in a long tradition of parent support for performing arts and invite other parents to become part of the PoPS community. Benefits include getting to know other CJ parents, meeting your children's friends and offering your time and talent to support CJ performing arts events - everything from hosting performances to baking cookies for band meals and serving as a parent ambassador at a CJ admissions event.

Interested in PoPS? Mark shares more about Chaminade Julienne’s performing arts parent organization.

* What is PoPS?
PoPS is "Parents of Performing Arts Students."  Any parent who has a child involved in a performing art at CJ is automatically a member.  These activities include vocal music (Liturgical Choir, Concert Choir, Hands in Harmony, Phoenix, and Vega); instrumental music (Concert Band, Strings, Eagle Pride, and other smaller ensembles); and drama (acting classes, fall play, spring musical, stage crew, and Busted Box Improv Troupe).

* How many members are there? Do they have to have children involved in performing arts?
We have never counted all the members (number of performing students multiplied by the number of parents), but the number of parents who are actively involved in PoPS in some way throughout the school year is more than 50. We have had parents whose "artsy" children have graduated who continued to support PoPS. We have not had parents whose children were not involved in performing arts at all, but we certainly would not turn them away. Many hands make light work.

* What events does PoPS hold/sponsor?
The primary goal of PoPS is to make life easier for Debi Schutt and her amazing staff when it comes to implementing performing arts activities, and making the experience of CJ's performing students as fulfilling as possible. To that end, we organize after-concert receptions, feed Eagle Pride before football games, feed the cast and crew of the plays between rehearsals, and offer assistance in any way we can. This year, we are putting special focus on helping to build the program. Working with the Admissions Department, we plan to reach out to young potential students. Community receptions will provide an ideal opportunity to invite parents and students, alike, to join the family that is CJ Performing Arts.

* How can I find out more or get involved?
Anyone interested in PoPS should contact Mark Phillips at (937) 790-1345 or via email. You will be put on the email list and be made aware of all the events we are planning. You can also keep an eye on the Parent Weekly for announcements of our next meeting and just show up.