When Providence Comes With You to College

University of Minnesota students from the Providence Class of 2013 Photo Submitted by Ellen Litecky '12
University of Minnesota students from the Providence Class of 2013
Photo Submitted by Ellen Litecky ’12

Where are you going to college?

This single, daunting question has been hanging over every seniors’ head during the last school year. Whether it is teachers, classmates, family members, or anyone else you get into any conversation with, seniors always hear this question.

With the May 1 deadline quickly approaching, most people know where they are going next year, or at least have a pretty good idea. So now, a new dimension to the “Where are you going to college?” question comes up: who else from high school is going to the same college?

Even coming from a small school like Providence Academy, there are many situations where people find classmates going to the same college next year. For example, there are several PA seniors planning to attend the University of St. Thomas next year.

However, students have differing attitudes toward this situation than others.

“I don’t really care,” said Maddie Lerum ’14, who is attending the University of St. Thomas next year, but she also adds that she “wants to meet new people.”

Other people are taking a different approach, and are planning to take advantage of the fact they already know people. Meggan Petters ’14 and Mory Jaberian ’14, both of whom are going to the University of St. Thomas next year, are going to be roommates.

“I’m excited… but we will need our space sometimes,” said Petters. “A lot of our friends are already at St. Thomas”.

But what is it like when you are actually at college with other Providence Alumni? How does that work? For this insight, some Providence alumni share their experiences about going to the same college as their classmates.

Ellen Litecky ’13 is attending the University of Minnesota with six other people from her graduating class.

“It’s been a great experience,” said Litecky. “Especially because none of use decided to live together so we all made new friends… but it’s still so great because I know all of them have my back no matter what.”

Emma Smith ’12, who is attending Hillsdale College with another PA alum, gives her thoughts as well.

“It has been a blessing in a lot of ways but also can make the transition harder,” said Smith. “It’s reassuring to know there is someone on campus whom you have shared experience with, on the other hand it is a constant reminder of the past and it makes it harder to come to the realization that high school and that time in your life is over.”

Overall, there are both advantages and disadvantages to going to the same school as fellow PA alums. In the end, it’s important to be able to move on from a place as great as Providence Academy, but that does not mean you have to cut out everyone from your time here.


PA Students Share Their Lenten Sacrifices

Photo Credit: Lauren Perinovic

It’s that time of year again. Mardi Gras is over and Lent has begun. This season of fasting and waiting started on Ash Wednesday and will last until Easter on April 20th.

Until that time, people will be fasting and doing other acts in preparation for Easter. And so the question arises, what will I be doing for Lent?

Of course, the common thing to do is to give something up for Lent. But what to give up? J.P. Flanders ’14, says that you should give up “stuff you enjoy”, but not stuff that is necessary.

Some students give up food. Frances Christianson ’14, has given up chocolate before, but claims that it was not easy to do. Allie Wooden ’14, suggests not eating between meals and giving up sweets.

Photo Credit: Creative Commons Google Images

Others give up fun activities or technologies that they enjoy. One example from Vince Sellner ’14 is to give up Facebook. He says that deleting the app makes it a lot easier to do.

Photo Credit: Creative Commons Google Images

Of course, giving up some things are harder than others. Some of these include giving up hot showers or even giving up your bed.

But there are other things to do during Lent than to give something up. An example of this would be going to the Stations of The Cross. This is a service that walks through the events of Christ’s Crucifixion and death, and only occurs in Lent. Other ideas would be to go to daily Mass, or to say the Rosary every day.

As history teacher Mr. Kevin Keiser says, “Think of that one thing that you don’t really need, but has become something that you presume is a part of your day and see if you can remove it for 40 days. “

No PA Breakfast Club – Yet

How great would it be to come to school in the mornings and have access to coffee, hot cocoa, or tea? Maggie Morgan ’14 says, “It would be really convenient when I get here early!”.


The reality of being able to buy breakfast at Providence Academy in the morning is not as far off as it would seem. In fact, according to Mrs. Deb Huro of the Kitchen Staff, the prospect had been considered before, but has never been put into practice.

Some of the potential breakfast items would include “morning coffee, muffins, cookies, yogurt, and fruit cups”.

So what has stopped this delicious reality from coming to fruition?


Mrs. Huro explains that there are a couple obstacles that have prevented this endeavor. First of all, there are no portable scanners to charge the student accounts. She says that the second problem would be “having custodial staff to clean the area”.

Beyond that, setting up food on a couple of tables in the great room would not work because the Great Room is used for other events, such as concerts, and so tables are not always set up for the morning. Mr. Harman, the Dean of Students, agrees that setup would be the main problem. The Great Room is used for lots of events, and is typically “not a meeting space”, according to Mr. Harman.

Mrs. Huro says that if these hurdles could be overcome, “it could be done”, but there are no solid plans for it to happen.

Until further notice, breakfast at Providence will remain a tasty dream in the minds of Providence students and staff.


A Behind-the-Scenes Look at Upper School Teachers’ Spirit Squad Performance


Upper School Students had a big surprise during Wednesday’s Catholic School’s Week Pep Fest.  Following a series of videos and competitions, the Spirit Squad performed new dances, and this time, they brought some special guests.

Photo Credit: Lauren Perinovic
Photo Credit: Lauren Perinovic

Unknown to the students prior to the Pep Fest, ten of the male upper school teachers joined in part way to dance in the medley of songs from High School Musical.  The daring performers were named “Dr. Fer and his Upper Steppers” by Mrs. Cathy Quinn, who coaches the Spirit Squad. The special guest teachers, with nicknames by Mrs. Quinn, include:

Photo Credit: Lauren Perinovic
Photo Credit: Lauren Perinovic
BB “got your back” Blackhawk
Ian “secret ninja moves” Skemp
D. “without a net” Fisher
Mike “more than a fro” Plucinski
Christopher “smooth operator” Santer
Ricky “sure can sing” Carrillo
Kevin “the new guy got game” Keiser
Adam “who let the dogs out?” Schmalzy, and
Tom Cat Jones.
According to Dr. Ferdinand, Mr. Harman was originally supposed to be among the dancers, but could not join due to “car troubles”.
Following the Spirit Squad’s performance to “Fabulous”, the teachers turned performers ran into the gym  to “The Boys are Back”. Both songs had original choreography by Spirit Squad Captain Stefanie Palmer ’14.
Photo Credit: Daniel Tawil
Stefanie Palmer ’14
Photo Credit: Daniel Tawil
For the finale, the Spirit Squad returned to join the “Upper Steppers”  for “We’re All in This Together”, with “authentic movie choreography”, according to Palmer. But this surprise didn’t come without a bit of work. Palmer says that the teachers have been practicing for about a week, but they only had one practice together, which took place in the closed-off antiquities gallery with signs about a meeting on the doors.
Photo Credit: Lauren Perinovic
Mr. Blackhawk
Photo Credit: Lauren Perinovic

Reflecting back on instructing the teachers, Palmer says, “It was really strange… I saw them in a less professional light. It was weird, but it was really fun.” According to her, math teacher Mr. Ben Blackhawk was the best dancer of the teachers because he had ballet experience.

Mr. Ian Skemp, history teacher, also got an honorable mention because he “gets really into it, and he adds his own style.”
Photo Credit: Lauren Perinovic
Mr. Skemp
Photo Credit: Lauren PerinoviDr. Ferdinand, the Upper School Director, says that the dancing “was more of a challenge than I expected”. He explains that “The feet and hand movements are very quick”. Mr. Jones said the hardest part was “trying to put all those dance moves together”. And looking at the high-kicks and spins they performed, their responses really make sense
Upper School Director Dr. Kevin Ferdinand’s experience of being taught by his former students was different than Palmer’s, however. He says, “It was stranger for her than it was for us”. He thinks that age doesn’t matter, and in the end “She knows something we don’t”.
In the end, after all the secret-keeping and dance-practicing, the surprise was well received. As the teachers ran into the gym in shorts, t-shirts, and sweatbands, they were greeted with a chorus of cheers and applause from the student-packed stands.
Photo Credit: Lauren Perinovic
Photo Credit: Lauren Perinovic
Faith Bartsch ’14, after seeing the performance, said she was “amazed”. “It was great to see that our teachers could appreciate this week as much as we can,” said Bartsch.
Photo Credit: Lauren Perinovic
Photo Credit: Lauren Perinovic

In the Midst of Finals, Students Share Their Strategies For Success

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How do PA’s hard-working, test-taking, upper school students survive these days of back-to-back exams? Some veterans of the blue tarp and dingy lighting share their thoughts…


“Eat a lot of chocolate and wake up early.” – Frances  Christianson

“If you don’t know it by 11 pm, you are not going to know it by the test.” – Christa Peterson

“Take a study break.” – Vince


“Freshman, only do as much as you can do and leave the rest to God – he will help you.” -Sasha Spichke

“Start studying early… think about one test, don’t think of all six at the same time.” – Christina Stankey

“If you haven’t started studying now, you’ll never succeed in life.” Connor Killion


“A good way for me to study for finals is to Skype my friends and study with them” – Alec Weber

“I go to the library to study for finals and isolate myself from the world so that I can give my full attention to the studies” -Austin Duncan


“Breathe and turn it over to the Lord” – Ms. Hagner

“Never re-read whole sections and call that studying.” – Mr. Harman

Consensus? Sleep, breathe, and be prepared.

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