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THE SUMMIT The magazine of The Summit Country Day School Spring Magazine 2018-19 EDITOR Nancy Berlier ART DIRECTOR/DESIGNER Kathleen (Hilsinger) Penote ’93 PHOTOGRAPHY Nancy Berlier, Jolene Barton, John Fahrmeier, Robert A. Flischel, Karen Kinross, Hannah Michels, Rick Norton, Elaine Pearl, Kathleen (Hilsinger) Penote ‘93, Nick Robbe, Leigh Taylor, Sophia Young, Xavier University. CONTRIBUTORS Sandy Champlin, Elizabeth Drumm, Tracy Law ’85, Ph.D., Tanya Bricking Leach, Amy Miller, Mark Osborne, Nick Robbe, Kathy Schwartz. Special thanks: Conky Greiwe, Jen McGrath, Nancy Snow. PRINTING Arnold Printing © 2019 The Summit Country Day School, Cincinnati, OH. The Summit magazine is published three times a year by the Communications Department of The Summit Country Day School, 2161 Grandin Road, Cincinnati, OH 45208. Please direct address changes or other correspondence to the above address.

Summit News Phone: (513) 871-4700 ext. 291 Email: Alumni News Please submit news about new degrees, new jobs, marriages, births and other notable passages in your life. Go to Summit Online View an archive of The Summit magazine online. The Summit Country Day School serves students from age 18 months through grade 12 in a coeducational setting. The Summit combines the academic excellence and one-on-one guidance of a top-tier independent school with the servant leadership and character-building environment

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ON THE COVER: These faces illustrate how diverse our student body is. This year, teachers are setting 20 standards in the curriculum in order to benchmark how we teach social justice, anti-bias and civil rights. The benchmarks for teaching acceptance cross four domains: identity, diversity, justice and action. See story on page 12. ON THIS PAGE: Jubilant members of the Latin Club walk through a spirit tunnel celebrating yet another state championship trophy. This was the fourth time in five years and eight in the last 10 that The Summit claimed the top spot. Individual students won 18 first-place state awards. See story on page 30. Photo by Nick Robbe.

Head of School Message

Diversity and Inclusion When I was a Brand Manager at P&G, we all had to

As leaders, we want them to seek out diverse views

attend training seminars in which the trainer would

and invite input from those voices, so that the

put us through various exercises to make a training

solutions devised are the best they can be.

point or improve our skills. There was one exercise

that made a big impression on me.   

For several years we’ve had active Diversity and

Inclusion (D&I) clubs in both the Middle and Upper

A challenge was put before us. We were on a

Schools. They learn about these principles and seek

camping trip. A catastrophe befell us, and with the

ways to practice them in our school. The clubs have

list of materials available in our backpacks, we had

brought provocative speakers to our campus.

to figure out the best solution. Each of us was given

a half hour to come up with a plan. After that they

Over the last 12 years, we’ve sent a delegation

put us in groups of five to share our plans and come

of teachers and students to the People of Color

up with the best plan the group could devise.

Conference, sponsored each year by the National

Association of Independent Schools. The funding

They then shared what was considered the best

for the program had been provided by one of our

solution. Next, the trainers asked, “How many of

generous families who passionately believed in

you came up with this solution on your own?” No

the importance of diversity. We’re now looking

one raised their hand. We then reviewed the plans

for another family to sponsor, if not endow, this

the small groups devised. Most were reasonably

opportunity for the benefit of our students long

close to the best one.

into the future.      

The point was made very

While these efforts have been worthwhile, we felt

powerfully: The best

there was an opportunity to teach D&I principles

solutions are a product of

like we would math: develop a scope and

many different voices, not

sequence from preschool through grade 12. This

just one.  

would ensure that all children would have the same exposure as they move through the grades.   

That is a lesson

we want Summit

The first step in accomplishing this objective was

students to

to adopt D&I teaching standards. From those

learn and

standards, teachers would then develop lesson


plans to bring those standards to life.

practice when

faced with a

We’ve adopted 20 standards grouped into four



Contents Identity: Students recognize they belong to multiple identity groups, recognize the traits of dominant and minority groups and learn how to negotiate their way through interactions with multiple groups. Diversity: Students seek to understand, develop respect and become comfortable interacting with those who are different from them.  Justice: Students recognize stereotypes, bias, power and privilege of dominant groups and injustice.  Action: Students recognize their responsibility and have the courage to stand up and speak out against bias, exclusion and injustice despite peer pressure to behave otherwise.      Two of the Hallmarks of a Notre Dame education provided to us by the Sisters echo these standards: “We embrace the gift of diversity,” and “We honor the dignity and sacredness of each person.” Our plan to teach to the D&I standards in our curriculum is a way of actualizing these hallmarks.      In so doing, we believe we’ll be giving our students the tools to become leaders of character who go out into the world and become the changemakers and peacemakers Christ calls all of us to be. That’s Christ’s way, the Sisters’ way and The Summit Way.

Rich Wilson Head of School

6 12 20 24 30 31 34 38 42 44

Features Chapel Talks celebrates its 10th anniversary this year. Nearly 250 students have challenged themselves to give this speech, which builds acceptance for the broad diversity of experiences, perspectives and backgrounds. Being able to understand people’s differences and then work for common ground is at the heart of a lot of our conflicts. The Summit has been building social justice, anti-bias and civil rights education into the curriculum for years and is now benchmarking best practices. Our new Exploratarium is a place where students and teachers can unleash their creativity and inquiry-based learning techniques. From learning how circuits work to basic coding to building a robot so well that it went to a state competition, our young minds are embracing the maker mindset. Students in our Lower School have access .to limitless sources of information through technology, so it is critical that they obtain, filter and organize the information they need. Our curriculum standards drive what students learn; we’re intentionally teaching study skills to show them how to learn. Our Latin Club brought home another state trophy in March while individual students won 18 first-place awards at the state convention. Read about these and other student and faculty newsmakers.   The Summit received high marks from parents this fall in our triennial community survey and many of the ratings were significantly higher than the benchmark for other independent schools. Running sports at The Summit are experiencing a surge in interest year-round. Ten years ago, 12 signed up for indoor track. Last season, we had 107. JP Tew is ranked among the best squash players in the country while Connie Nelson was named a US Squash Scholar Athlete for the second year in a row. The Summit awarded 23 endowed scholarships and 34 merit scholarships to 57 incoming freshmen in March. Three students benefitted from the newly endowed Summit Family Fund Scholarship. Recipients of The Summit’s oldest endowed scholarship, the Marc Gerard Fragge ‘83 Memorial Scholarship, are an accomplished group of academic high achievers.

Departments 26 Newsmakers 28 Faculty Newsmakers 37 Athletic Newsmakers 50 Sister Rose Ann Fleming ’50 SNDdeN 54 Class Notes

Correction Robert L. “Bob” Greiwe SBS ’46 was misidentified in a caption in the January magazine. We regret the error.

Summit Magazine 5

Senior Noor Amir practices her Chapel Talk, the capstone experience of The Summit’s Soleil Oratory Leadership Program. Nearly 250 students have given Chapel Talks since the program began 10 years ago.






Public Speaking

10 Years


Chapel Talks

Spring Magazine 2018-19

By Nancy Berlier In the past 10 years, nearly 250 students have challenged themselves to walk to the front of the Chapel and bare their souls to an audience of 400 peers, teachers, parents and special guests.   These Chapel Talks, inaugurated in the spring of 2009, have been alternatively poignant, enlightening, artsy, surprising and playful, while embracing the broad diversity of experiences, perspectives and backgrounds of the student body.    Many reflected deeply on the transitional experience of growing into adulthood. Liz (Edwards) Ford ’10 discovered how cool her dad really was. Fatima (Moscat) Pardos ’11 elaborated on patriotism. Brittany Williams ’11 challenged her audience to rethink the definition of beauty.   Others built acceptance for all kinds of diversity. Isabelle Saldana ’13 likened her family dinner table to a meeting of the United Nations where Puerto Rico, Portugal, France and the Peoples Republic of China hold nightly confabs. Wearing traditional Middle Eastern garb, Sara Ahmed ’12 talked about how to balance modesty, dictated by her religion, with fashion.     Some have been playful, even though they shone a light on serious truths. Simon Chow ’11 suggested adding sprinkles not just to donuts but to life itself. Wearing a pith helmet, Shirley Nunlist ’11 described observing her Middle School peers in their natural habitat and discovered The Summit is an ecosystem as convoluted as any rain forest.  Some were surprising. Talking about stepping outside your comfort zone, Daniel Shisler ’19 abandoned the podium and walked down the aisle for a conversation with his classmates.  J McLean III ’12 delivered his talk in rap. At the time, J didn’t consider it a risk to deliver his Chapel Talk in the style of spoken word poetry. “People would consider it different, of course,” he says. “However, the decision to do so felt comfortable to me. I was eager to share my most authentic self at the podium. I started with the concluding take-away and worked backwards when writing it. I wanted people to know it was OK to be their best selves too. I also wanted to

Chapel Talks moderators Upper School social studies teacher Tracy Law ‘85, Ph.D., left, and Spanish teacher Monica (Haas) Desch ’90 review the speech that senior Brigid Devine’s planned.

properly thank the ones who shaped me most as a person over my four-year journey at The Summit.”    “Delivered as a rap, it was edgy, dynamic and something to remember,” recalls Upper School social studies teacher Tracy Law ’85, Ph.D. who now facilitates Chapel Talks with Spanish teacher Monica (Haas) Desch ’90. “People will remember Daniel’s talk too because they were startled when he stepped away from the podium and delivered his speech conversationally and from memory.”    Daniel’s delivery illustrated his point: Try new things.  “Who cares what other people think?” he says. “What are we doing if we are just blending in? We should want to be ourselves. We should

“We have the power to make differences. We can stop making observations and start making inferences. We can use our wit to make the world a better place.” – Niah Woods ’18 Summit Magazine 7

“Our unity’s empowered me, and I hope to inspire you, to embrace your gifts and love yourself and show the world what you can do.” – J McLean III ’12 want to stand out. Everyone is unique in their own beautiful ways. I don’t think we hear this enough.”  Oratories like these are not the singular domain of the Upper School. The highly-trained faculty help students develop confidence for oral presentations beginning as preschoolers and give them opportunities to shine in front of an audience at every grade level. But Chapel Talks are a specific rite of passage in the Upper School and the capstone experience of Soleil, The Summit’s Oratory Leadership Program.   Illuminating each student’s personalized education experience, Soleil helps students develop a sense of self, hone leadership skills and find their voice. Chapel Talks polish oratory skills as students reflect on who they are and who they want to be.    “What Summit’s Chapel Talks became, and why it is so special to me, is that it shed light on my fellow classmates whom I had been sitting next to for at least four years,” says Gaby (Chandra) Napier ’10, who was among a group of faculty and students who defined the program after a visit in 2008 to Phillips Academy, Roxbury Latin and St. Sebastian’s to research similar programs.


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“I thought that I knew my classmates and friends, but after hearing their Chapel Talks, I felt I had a better understanding of who they were and how their beliefs were formed. Personally, and I think for every senior, when they write their Chapel Talk, it is a time to reflect on their own experiences and how they have grown into a person ready to be a leader in the world we’ll inherit.”   Telling stories that form connections is the most important aspect of Chapel Talks, says senior Colleen McIlvenna ’19 who gave her talk this year.  “That’s what stories do,” she says. “They connect us. They bring us together. They teach us more about ourselves and even others.”  That is certainly true of what may be the most remarkable of all Chapel Talks thus far, the one J. McLean delivered. Fast forward to 2017 when Niah Woods ’18 sees J’s talk on video and is awestruck.  “I was instantly mesmerized,” she says. “One, because there was a black senior on this little screen; two, he was not just speaking, there was rhythm in his tone. Listening to J’s talk not only caused me to shed a tear, but it brought out a passion that I had repressed for so long.

“I thought that I knew my classmates and friends, but after hearing their Chapel Talks, I felt I had a better understanding of who they were and how their beliefs were formed.” – Gaby (Chandra) Napier ’10

During the writing process, I listened to J’s talk more times than I can remember. It became a daily routine if I’m being honest… I took notes carefully, breaking down each part of his talk to understand the deeper meaning of what he was saying. I wanted to be like him, I wanted to tell a story, I wanted people to remember my message even if they didn’t remember who gave it.” As she prepared to deliver her talk, Niah asked Dr. Law to extend an invitation to J to attend. While J wasn’t available, he read her words in a restaurant where he met with Dr. Law. He was inspired to write a note to Niah on the spot which he penned on a restaurant napkin.  

Freshman Tony Zhang performs an impromptu speech after drawing a random topic out of a box. Freshman speech class, taught by Tom Peters, is an introduction to public speaking.

“She had the bravery to fully express herself while facing pressure to perform a more traditional oration,” J says. “She also took stock of the people that inspired her, and I was deeply humbled to make that list.” On the napkin, he called her a queen. “Giving that napkin covered in handwriting to Niah, and hearing her feelings about receiving it, encompassed both the meaning of Chapel Talks and the meaning of relationships at The Summit,” says Dr. Law. These are two students, separated by almost a decade who have never met in person. It’s all about the connection.”   Niah says J’s note was a confidence booster, and she carried it with her every day and laid it on the chapel podium beside her speech when she gave her own talk.   “I cannot thank J enough for what he has done for me,” she says. “He broke me out of a shell that I was too blind to know that I was in. I’m grateful that I gave that Chapel Talk, because without J, I wouldn’t have made it on ‘The Journey to Find Out Who I Am.’”    Tracy Law ’85, Ph.D, contributed to this story. See Chapel Talks given by J McLean III ‘12 and Niah Woods ‘18 at

In Leadership 10, where students learn attributes of ethical, collaborative leadership, Upper School teacher M.J. Feldhaus talks to Keene Kreider, Jason Zhan, Malik Cody, Chris Whitney and Alex Waak about their team Vision Statement Poster. The poster presentation lets students practice public speaking before giving a leadership talk at the end of the semester.

Soleil Soleil is a French adjective which means to finish with a high luster. The Summit’s Oratory Leadership Program, Soleil polishes the oratory skills of Upper School students and guides them to become leaders of character. Soleil fosters and empowers personal growth in faith, character, morally-based leadership and formation of conscience. Through a formal curriculum, students study speech as freshmen and take leadership classes as sophomores and juniors. Chapel Talks is the fourth component of Soleil. Students also have opportunities to practice what they have learned through Soleil in assemblies, student-led activities, liturgy, the arts, extra-curricular activities, advisement and community events. Summit Magazine 9

What is beauty? This is an excerpt of a Chapel Talk given in 2010-11.  By Brittany Williams ’11 What is beauty? 

Throughout this talk, remember: Beauty cannot be defined. It is not a certain height, weight, race or gender. It is universal, has no set requirements or any type of secret code.  

Look to your left. And what do you see? Now look to your right.   Your answer probably includes naming the person’s eye color, hair color, race and gender but there is more to that than what meets the eye. 

Every day when I wake up, my daily routine involves applying makeup. I brush my hair until every single strand is in place. I apply perfume. Brush my teeth until I am left with nothing but white. Add my earrings, and my rings. Then, I am set. Brittany Williams’11

So I ask you again, what is beauty? Is it the tall, skinny Caucasian woman in the CoverGirl commercial? Is it Beyonce’s curves? Taylor Swift’s hair? Kim Kardashian’s body?   Someone define beauty for me.  Is it white skin? Black skin? Brown? Yellow? Blue eyes? Brown eyes?  What is it? I need an answer.  Did you know that “the average woman is 5-foot, 4-inches and weighs 140 pounds” while “the average model is 5-foot, 11-inches and weighs 117 pounds?”  Did you know…many teenage boys are prone to obsessive exercising, binge eating, anorexia nervosa, bulimia, steroid abuse and diet aid abuse, all because they want to look like the man on the Men’s Health magazine?  “It is estimated that 40 to 50 percent of American women are trying to lose weight at any point in time.”  “One out of every four college-aged women has an eating disorder.”  10

Spring Magazine 2018-19

It was only recently that I realized my makeup is my armor. My shield. Its main purpose is to hide the real Brittany and reveal someone that is flawless and effortlessly beautiful. So that no one notices that my eyelashes on my right eye are curly and the ones on my left eye are straight. So no one can see the scaring around my nose from the chicken pox I had at an earlier age. My rings and nail polish add life to my long, rough hands, and my earrings add brightness to my otherwise dull face. I want to take you back a couple years…to my sophomore year. Every day, I would enter Mrs. Williamson’s classroom and announce to the class that I would be on “America’s Next Top Model,” as soon as I turned 18. But little did they know that was nothing but the second layer of my armor. I pretended to have confidence in myself. I wanted people to think I was beautiful and that I knew I was beautiful. I wanted everyone to remember me as the pretty black girl. I wanted younger girls to look up to me and think, “Wow, I want to be as pretty as Brittany Williams when I grow up.”  My self-esteem was horrible. I hated the person that looked back at me in the mirror. I felt disgusting. My friends were sooo small. I was 5-feet-10. They were 5-feet-5. I was brown. They were white. My hips and backside stuck out while theirs sat evenly proportionate to their

“Look to your left. And what do you see. Now look to your right. Now look all around you. I see beauty. What about you?” – Brittany Williams ’11 bodies. I was different. I was “More.” “Extra…” “Developed…” “Plus.”  I was uncomfortable with who I was. Ha. I remember not wanting to lay on the floor in religion class when watching a movie, because I felt my butt would block the kid behind me. It’s kinda funny when I look back on it now, but back then, it hurt because all I ever wanted was to be like the girl in the music video or the models on the cover of magazines.  But…I want to ask you again…  What is beauty?... Because sometimes I don’t know. I think about this all the time. Who’s to say the tall girl with long blond hair is prettier than the short girl with brown hair? Who’s to say the captain of the boys’ lacrosse team is more handsome than the president of the chess club? And if so, what makes them more attractive?  I can pinpoint the very day I realized beauty cannot be defined. Sophomore year, my advisement participated in the Special Olympics during formation days.  I met a 9-year-old African American girl named Sophia. When I saw her, we clicked. I was addicted to her. I wanted to make her happy because I thought she was miserable. I imagined myself in her shoes and wondered how different my life would be. How I would

be faced with so many challenges that the average person could accomplish with ease, such as simply kicking a ball or using my words to explain a certain feeling. Sophia showed me many things in life that I would never have learned without her. Sophia was autistic, but it was something about her, something so inspirational that it made me forget about her disability and look at her like an extraordinary human being. Her spirit and enthusiasm grew on everyone around her. It was almost like she cast a spell on us.   She had so much energy but lacked in physical ability. She carried herself with such poise but needed someone to help her walk. She had a great and inspiring voice, but she could barely speak. She could reach to the sky and touch a star, but was only about five feet tall.  Everything about her was beautiful. She had so much inner beauty that I wanted to be Sophia.  It is through her that I have defined beauty. My definition of beauty is …is everything. It is everywhere, everyone. It is Amy Corser’s eyes. Ha – old people in shorts and tank tops. Rikkel Bravo’s radiant skin. Rwanda…Darfur. Gloria Beingana’s smile. Biracial relationships. Fred’s wet high fives. Jenna Joseph’s eyebrows. All relationships regardless of sexual orientation. Mr. Stayton’s gold tee. The way Coach Simmons wrinkles her forehead when trying to make a point. Emma McGoff’s creativity. Kelsey Hock’s red hair. The way Mr. Smith’s whole face lights up when he smiles. Mr. Carle’s deep voice. Mrs. Cramer’s sweet voice. And Mr. V’s unique walk.   This is what beauty is.  My purpose is to destroy the image that so often comes to mind when one hears the word “beautiful.”   Look to your left. And what do you see. Now look to your right. Now look all around you.  I see beauty.  What about you?    Summit Magazine 11





Spring Magazine 2018-19




Teaching Diversity

Summit Curriculum Standards Encourage Students to Challenge Prejudice  

By Tanya Bricking Leach There’s a Jewish parable Kirstin Pesola McEachern, Ph.D. thinks about when she imagines what students here will learn about diversity by the time they graduate.   It’s the story of two pockets. The Hasidic tale goes that everyone must have two pockets with a note in each one. That way, they can reach into one pocket or the other, depending on their need. In one pocket is piece of paper that says: “The world was created for me.” In the other pocket, that note says: “I am but dust and ashes.”    The lesson in reading each note may be about ego and humility, but it’s also about diversity, says Dr. McEachern, The Summit’s Curriculum and Instruction Director who also oversees Diversity & Inclusion.    “You are special and unique, and no one else is like you,” she says.“At the same time, you are not better than anyone else.”   SETTING STANDARDS     The Summit has been building social justice, antibias and civil rights education into the curriculum for years. Now, Dr. McEachern is benchmarking it by setting 20 curriculum standards for educators to reach across four domains: identity, diversity, justice and action.    

During a collaborative work time called “Mappy Hour,” Middle School teacher Laura Dennemann, left, and Upper School teacher Megan Luiso, right, work with Kirstin Pesola McEachern, Ph.D., Curriculum and Instruction Director and Diversity & Inclusion Coordinator, on the religion curriculum. Dr. McEachern is helping teachers benchmark 20 curriculum standards for teaching acceptance.

 Here are some examples: 
  IDENTITY  Students will develop positive social identities based on their membership in multiple groups in society.  DIVERSITY  Students will express comfort with people who are both similar to and different from them and engage respectfully with all people.  JUSTICE  Students will recognize stereotypes and relate to people as individuals rather than representatives of groups.  ACTION  Students will express empathy when people are excluded or mistreated because of their identities and concern when they themselves experience bias. 

In Upper School biology teacher Bret Miller’s laboratory, Jade Hays, Abby Almaguer, and Zoey Collier-Gooden study diversity of life and microscopy. The directive in lab groups, Mr. Miller says, is always to appreciate the diversity in the group in order to get fresh perspectives from each other. Summit Magazine 13 13

The standards are based on national best practices meant to help teachers and schools educate children to be active participants in a diverse community. From Montessori through Upper School, teachers are incorporating the program’s goals into lessons and discussions that encourage each grade level to challenge prejudice and value others’ perspectives.   “Being able to understand people’s differences and then work for common ground is at the heart of a lot of our conflicts,” Dr. McEachern says. “When we talk about preparing leaders of character to value and improve the world that they will inherit, it’s all about being a global citizen and cultural competency.”  This is as important as anything else in the curriculum, she says.    “The key message for me is how crucial diversity and inclusion principles are to education and to one’s growth,” she says. “I think if any adult were to look back on their life and think about a time when they most changed or grew as a person, it was because they were exposed to something new and different. So how do we take that concept and make sure that we’re doing that across the board with our students, even though it might make us uncomfortable?”    This is how. 

Eighth graders Shelby Gottenbusch, Gwen Hellmann, Owen McEachern, Savannah Eveslage and Kendall Ralph place donated items in a box prepared for the Bond Hill Food Pantry.


The Summit prides itself on being inclusive. One of the hallmarks of the founding order, the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur, is embracing diverse cultures,

Third grader Beckett Brinkman writes in his reflection journal. Lower School students write about their feelings on topics, such as homelessness, covered in readings or presentations.

BY THE NUMBERS Our student population:  • 1,034 enrollment  • 28% multicultural  • 61% Catholic  • 39% other faiths  • 25 international students  • 128 faculty   • 63% of faculty have advanced degrees


Spring Magazine 2018-19

Fourth grader Danny Beyerbach tries to button his shirt while wearing gloves, an exercise that helps develop empathy for persons with disabilities. The exercise was part of last year’s “Art of Acceptance” Character Education capstone in which seventh graders research physical limitations and present related activities to Lower School students.

Bo Pang, a native speaking Chinese teacher, plays a word memorization game with eighth grader PJ Schaaf, sophomore Savannah Lewis and eighth grader Shannon Dennemann to help them build their vocabulary. World Language classes are a natural curricular fit for teaching acceptance of other cultures.

ethnicities, races, socio-economic circumstances, genders, ages, sexual orientation and faith traditions.   Nearly 40 percent of the student body comes from other faith traditions. The school has attracted firstand second-generation families from 24 countries. Each year, more than 130 new students enroll from other private, public and international schools. The school also offers financial aid for families who qualify.    The Summit also offers a wealth of clubs – from the student Diversity & Inclusion clubs in the Middle and Upper School, to special presentations such as a troupe of Chinese Acrobats, to the faculty and Upper School students who annually attend the annual National Association of Independent Schools’ People of Color Conference.    Opening students’ mindsets is part of the character education built into The Summit’s signature programs.    The commitment to diversity also comes across in subtle ways, such as the day this winter when a visitor from the Bond Hill Food Pantry came to talk to Middle Schoolers about what the pantry does for people who are hungry and economically distressed.    Speakers often visit the school to share experiences that students here have never thought about experiencing themselves. 


In Meghan Cole’s fifth grade language arts classroom, the novels students carry with them make it evident that diversity is woven in the fabric of each lesson plan.    They read books such as “The Lions of Little Rock,” author Kristin Levine’s piece of historical fiction about kids caught up in the 1958 political rage over school integration. One summer read has been “Out of My Mind,” a novel by local author Sharon Draper about a brilliant fifth grader with cerebral palsy.  Classroom discussions tend to revolve around that grade level’s character trait of courage and how characters in the book are courageous and worthy of empathy and respect. Each book selection is eyeopening for 10- and 11-year-olds.  “Some of our novels tell stories of horrible things that have happened in the past. We want students to be knowledgeable, so they will work to prevent something like that from happening again,” Mrs. Cole says.    But the teaching goes beyond literature.    “It’s about life skills, too,” she says. “There can’t be a sense of entitlement. You have to be open. Everyone’s different.”  15 Summit Magazine 15

Dressed in native costumes, Middle School students Quinn Bohmer, Axel Kindel, Sasha Woodard and Cammy Lorentz lead the procession for the annual Spanish Mass.

Montessori Spanish teacher Katia Palek uses a book to prompt preschool students to describe the characters’ moods, feelings, roles and settings and to predict what the characters are going to do. World Language exposure begins at age 2 with Spanish. Classes in French or Spanish begin in the Early Enrichment Program with 3- and 4-year-olds.

After hearing about the Ojibwa legend of the dream catcher, Montessori children make their own dream catchers to give to a friend during the Corn Festival.2018-19 Pictured: Hudson Allen at the end of the table 16 Spring Magazine and Matti Hofmann, Ryan Schaaf and Micah Northern on the right.

COURAGE TO STAND UP     Would a fourth or fifth grader stand up to bullies, to insensitivity, or to racism?    Mrs. Cole is working with fourth grade language arts teacher Frances Keller to make sure the answer is yes.    It starts with culling their novel collection to feature stories from all kinds of perspectives, be it a female protagonist or a Native American’s story about his culture’s naming ritual. The theme might be about understanding a culture, building empathy for an underdog, demystifying stereotypes or standing up to exclusion, prejudice or injustice.    From first through fourth grades, students keep reflection journals to write about how experiences such as reading about homelessness or hearing from a speaker from the food pantry make them feel.    “I would like them to walk away with an openness and an interest in finding out more about all people,” Mrs. Keller says. “I would like for them to realize that there are multiple perspectives, and there are multiple experiences that may be different from their own. And I’d like them to understand how those experiences shape and impact the way that people approach their existence.”    “I hope that they walk out of my door feeling a global connection,” she says. “We are all humans going through it together.”   


Even subjects that might not obviously lend themselves to diversity lessons are opportunities for educators to find a way to weave it in.    Karen Cruse Suder, an Upper School biology teacher and science department curriculum coordinator, works it into the study of bones.    Mrs. Suder has a background in biological anthropology. When her students study skeletal remains to determine ancestry, they use calipers to measure areas of the skull, such as the nasal region, eye orbits and nose shape. They learn about how even a suture pattern on the back of the skull can be indicative of ancestry.   

“I share with my students that there is a great deal of debate about using skeletal material to determine ancestry,” she says. “People with similar ancestry share certain characteristics, but there is a great deal of variation within populations as well.” In her genetics unit, she teaches about the biology of skin color. In her Honors Hawaii Marine Science Seminar, students learn about that culture’s respect for the land and ocean. They even learn Hawaiian myths, legends and history to gain a deeper understanding of the Hawaiian culture beyond marine science.  Mrs. Suder also stresses the importance of various learning styles.      “Not every student learns and studies the same way,” she says. “It’s about finding the effective study strategy for each student, refining it and continuing to develop it.” 

Ethan Wu, an eighth grader from Shanghai, speaks during a Naturalization Service hosted annually by The Summit.


Even The Summit’s smallest learners are getting a taste of diversity.    In Lauren Guip’s Montessori classroom for 3- to 6-yearolds, it begins with reading “We’re All Wonders,” a picture book by R.J. Palacio, the same author as the middle-school novel “Wonder,” that was made into a movie. The picture book is about a child who’s physically different and how he longs to belong.   Mrs. Guip uses the book as a starting point for discussing empathy and kindness.    “We talk about how we might all look a little different on the outside,” she says, “But on the inside we’re all the same.” 

Diana Sofia, left, and her sister, Livia, work with materials in a Montessori classroom. The sisters are multinational, speaking Hungarian to their mother and Italian to their dad. The Summit community includes families from 24 countries.

L to R, fifth graders Caleb Driessen, Rosie Gieseke and Sophie Brouwer collaborate in an iLab lesson on engineering with Legos. The Summit believes coeducation prepares boys and girls to collaborate and communicate as adults.

The Rev. Peterson Mingo from Christ Temple Full Gospel Baptist Church speaks to the Upper School during an assembly to celebrate Black History Month. 17 Summit Magazine 17

On a more tangible level for the Montessori kids, she has another activity that demonstrates her point. It’s the story of two eggs. It goes a little like this: There is a brown egg and a white egg. Take a look. Touch them, feel them. Break them open. What do you see?  “It’s a very concrete way to teach kids that we all look different on the outside, but we’re the same on the inside,” Mrs. Guip says, “and we all have feelings.”  Karen Suder, Upper School biology teacher and science department curriculum coordinator, uses a sliding caliper to examine a bone from a “breakout box” experience in a discussion of forensic anthropology with, L to R, freshmen Reagan Sutton, Bridget Baker and Nicholas Ciaccio. In the lesson, students ascertain a biological profile of skeletal elements whereby age, sex, stature and ethnicity can be determined. 

It’s like the story of two pockets on a Lower School Level. They learn that they are unique, but no better than anyone else. On a day-to-day basis, Mrs. Guip likes to embrace similarities and the differences in other ways that are tangible. She invites parents to come in to share their heritage, language and cultural items.    All of us, no matter our age, need to learn more about embracing diversity because it’s so relevant in today’s world, she says.  “Right now, we are in really tumultuous times,” she says, “And it’s important to be raising children that no matter what your political beliefs are or what your religion is, kindness should always be there, tolerance should always be there, and it starts with you. It starts with children. It starts with teachers.”

Montessori lead teacher Lauren Guip reads “We’re All Wonders” to her 3- to 6-year-olds as a starting point to talk to children about empathy and kindness.

Parent Christian James talks to seventh graders at their confirmation retreat about his faith journey and coping with amyotrophic lateral 18 sclerosis, Spring Magazine also known 2018-19 as Lou Gehrig’s disease.

Members of the new Upper School Student Advisory Council gather with the Upper School’s Assistant Director Cliff Pope in the Bishops Parlor. L to R, seated, Bennett Caruso ‘19 and Mike Stanis ‘20. Standing are Naomi Purdie ‘21, Bry Woodard ‘21, Evan Purdie ‘19, Mr. Pope, Maliah Bricking ‘20 and Sydni Black ‘20.

Student Advisory Committee Takes on Tough Topics Imagine a topic tougher for a teen advisory council to undertake than a new ban on cell phones in the classroom. Cliff Pope, the Upper School’s new Assistant Director, convened a Student Advisory Committee (SAC) this year to help him get a pulse on the student culture. In addition to discussing this year’s cell phone ban, topics have included the daily schedule structure, the biggest discipline issues and concerns, academic award recognition and another tough topic – parking. The council has been so helpful that Mr. Pope has decided to continue it next year.  “I have learned in my 27 years in Cincinnati Catholic high schools that it is best if the person who holds my position develops strong educational relationships with the student body,” he says. “I have always believed that if you really want to learn who your students are, and what the things are that they truly value, then you simply have good honest conversations with them.”  Members of the SAC were required to complete a formal application and get two faculty endorsements. The group represents the broad diversity of the school. Mr. Pope asks students be candid about how they think issues should be addressed. 

“The creating of the SAC this year has been beneficial for not only a general expression of ideas without intimidation but also a great way for us, as students, to understand the problems the school has to deal with,” says junior Michael Stanis.     Junior Sydni Black says the SAC has been successful in refining new policies. The committee has received ideas from the administration, asked for advice from teachers and students and brought responses back to the SAC. “Most importantly, it allows everyone to have input in their experience daily at The Summit,” she says.  In his career, Mr. Pope says he has observed that some educators tend to “talk at” students and “speak for” students. “I have been relatively successful as an educator because I have always listened to what my students have had to say. The hope is that the ideas and suggestions of the SAC will have an impact on certain policies and structures that we have at school and, no matter what direction we go, the students will have had a “voice” in the process.  – Nancy Berlier     

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Welcome to the

EXPLORATARIUM Summit’s New Makerspace Fuels Inventiveness, Creativity  

Exploratarium Coordinator Mary Kate Newton helps with first graders Clea Sinno, Max Adams, Tyrone Cox and Giulia Rassi build circuits using Play-Doh, battery packs, and LED bulbs. 20

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By Nancy Berlier This year, every student in the Lower School learned about circuits. But they didn’t just sit in their classrooms and look at books or listen to lectures on circuits. They built their own in The Summit’s new Exploratarium. First graders made circuits out of Play-Doh. Second graders added insulation to their circuits. Third and fourth graders went a step further by “MacGyvering” flashlights using a tongue depressor, copper tape, a battery, LED light and binder clips. “It was a basic intro to circuits and electricity, but they were having fun and learning a survival skill,” says Mary Kate Newton, Middle School librarian and Exploratarium Coordinator.     Mrs. Newton is applying what she learned in a special Master’s Degree program at Miami University which focused on teaching inquirybased learning techniques. And she’s using her library training to help the faculty use the space themselves. “The idea of maker mindset and maker spaces was really embraced by libraries because it is supposed to be a community-centric place, similar to going to a library to check out books or use computers and media,” she says. “The idea is to go to a place to use tools and products that you don’t necessarily have at home.”     All of the academic divisions have made their way into the Exploratarium.   Kindergarteners and their parents used the Exploratarium for a coding party using Ozobots. These little robots have optical sensors which can read color. Each color represents a command – move forward, move sideways or spin like a tornado. The kids used markers to color blocks on paper to tell their robot what to do.  “The Ozobots teach kids to use patterns and sequences to tell robots what to do,” says Mrs. Newton. “The next sequence in a curriculum would be to teach kids to use a computer to drag and drop bits of color that represent coding. Next, you’re talking about writing in code. But you’re not teaching coding to kindergarteners. You’re teaching pattern, sequence, logic, left to right. It makes sense in kindergarten and they love it.”  

First grade teacher Sharon Nista and educational assistant Martha Grumbley gather first graders around a work table to build circuits. Left, Alex Bishop, Liam Fildes, Alexander Hill. Right, Izze Montaque, Robert Montgomery, Evelyn Paulsen, Nick Rassi and Annabelle Huttenbauer

While the Lower School students learned about circuits, Middle Schoolers are also using the space and are being encouraged to have a maker mindset in their classrooms.   A goal in the Middle School this year is for every student to design and print with 3D printers. Fifth graders made autobiographical sculptures by printing their first initial. Sixth graders printed shoes with a theme – so a movie shoe might have a popcorn stencil, while a snowboarding show might have a tiny snowboard flying off its edge. Eighth graders designed stencils using “Tinkercad” software and they used their stencil as a tag on a biography wall. Students in STEM class were challenged to solve a real world problem, so they collaborated on a guard they could put inside their locker to cover a sharp surface.   In library time, Mrs. Newton worked with language arts teacher Brendan McEachern to help kids create puppets that represent characters in their independent reading assignments. Starting in the library and then moving into the Exploratarium, they used cardboard, tape, chunks of foam and other materials to fashion the creations they used in giving oral presentations.   Taking stock  The Exploratarium has an assortment of analog and high-tech building materials. There you can find hammers, sandpaper, stationary and cardmaking supplies, crafting supplies like straws, pom poms, popsickle sticks and googly eyes. But there are also power tools, 3D printers, laser cutters and mini robots. Teachers have Summit Magazine 21

breakout EDU kits, problem-solving board games, origami supplies with instructions and Lego challenge pieces. This year, Mrs. Newton has focused on organizing materials and showing teachers some things that can be done in the space. Supplies are organized in green, yellow and red zones to organize supplies that are broken down by skill not age. Lower School teachers can bring their classes in. Middle and Upper School students can make appointments to use the space. Teachers from any division can bring in classes. The next step is for teachers to return to the space and do projects on their own.  Upper School Technology Teacher Michael Thomas wasted no time getting his Robotics Team into the Exploratarium to build a competition robot. “We are very fortunate to have the Exploratarium space to use,” he says. “I don’t know any other school that has such a nice and well-equipped space. In fact, most other schools don’t have a dedicated space and, if they do have a practice arena, they must put it up and take it back apart every time they want to use it.”  While much of the equipment for the Exploratarium was relocated, some of it was donated. “We have slowly been adding tools to support our efforts such as a drill press, Scroll


saw, Dremel tools, and numerous hand tools. We also have heavily utilized the existing 3D printers and our laser cutter to manufacture custom parts for our robot,” Mr. Thomas says. The robot is a good example of how a maker space bridges the gap between old and new technology.  “Maker spaces are a kind of marriage between high tech and analog,” Mrs. Newton says. “Hammers and sandpaper have been around for centuries and, while we still have those things, now we have robots and 3D printers. A lot of high-tech projects require analog tools. Industry is requiring people who have skills with both.”      Maker spaces also are places that teach students how to succeed, she says. “It teaches kids stickto-itiveness,” she says. “They learn to fail and try again. Failing teaches kids critical thinking skills. They learn how to work around a problem and come up with alternative solutions.”  After all, she notes, many of the greatest inventors failed many times before they succeeded.  “Creative problem solving is a key skill children in this century must master for future success,” says Head of School Rich Wilson. “Our strategic plan calls for teachers to include more of these experiences in their lessons.”

Sixth graders Kate McLane and Benedict Domville learn how to use Spring Magazine 2018-19

wood burners in the Exploratarium to scorch designs onto ornaments.

Freshman Jack Crane spreads his tools out around him in the Exploratarium to make some tweaks on the robot that went to state competition.

Rookie Robotics Club Goes to State Competition “Without their hard work, it would never have happened.”

By Nick Robbe In its rookie year, the Robotics Club competed in the FIRST Tech Challenge state competition in February. The team qualified for the event by finishing in first place as part of an alliance with a team from Loveland. Freshmen Irene Calderon, Jack Crane, Andrew Drees, Jimmy Fraley, Gus Nelson and Luis Valencia; sophomores Tianqi “Arthur” Li and Jacob Locke; junior Junbo “Tom” Li; and senior Neng “Ben” Chai are the team members. 

Technology and the desire to learn how things work have long held Jack’s attention. Those interests did not take long to extend to other students. Mr. Thomas says the team members enjoy the “hands-on” building aspects of the robot the most.

L to R: Andrew Drees, Irene Calderon, Junbo “Tom” Li, Neng “Ben” Chai, Jack Crane and Jacob Locke.

The Robotics Club used a portion of the Exploratarium to build their competition robot and practice.   “The team was, without a doubt, the result of a lot of planning, time and contributions by freshman Jack Crane and his parents,” Upper School Technology teacher Mike Thomas says.

In competing in the FIRST Tech Challenge league, the club had to design, build, program and operate robots to compete in head-to-head challenges.

The Summit achieved results despite this being the rookie season. “Reaching this level this quickly is a great achievement,” says Mr. Thomas.

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Intentional Lessons in Study Skills Prepare LS Pupils for Rigors Ahead By Elizabeth Drumm   For many, the words “study skills” evoke memories of making flashcards, highlighting notes and cramming for exams. Although testprep strategies certainly fall under the study skills umbrella, modern study skills include a much broader set of competencies. “Creating positive habits around school is an intentional process, starting with our youngest students,” says Lower and Middle School Director Mike Johnson. While curriculum standards drive what students learn, study skills show them how to learn.  Today’s students have practically limitless sources of information available to them, so it’s critical that they can obtain, filter and organize the information they need.   Fourth graders at The Summit take a detailed look at organization as they are preparing for middle school. They analyze the many ways that items and information can be organized and why one might use each type. They notice that books in a library are organized in a different way than items in a grocery store, for example, because the two systems serve different purposes.   The students look at their school materials and think about their organization objective, asking themselves, “When does it make sense to sort my things by subject? By due date? By type of assignment?” This is a great age for practicing good organization habits because students are very capable of categorizing items at this point and can experiment with a variety of systems to see what works for them.  Time management is another skill that is critical across the lifespan, and one that can also be intentionally explored with children. Students in the Lower School practice looking a fictional student’s list of weekly obligations, from attending school to doing chores at home, and they map out a plan in a visual, puzzle-like calendar format. This type of activity is a great way to demonstrate why planning ahead is so 24

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important; the students notice right away that if they put all of the most appealing, fun items from the list on the calendar first, they run out of time for essential activities like schoolwork, sleep and meals.   When they instead identify the top priorities and schedule those first, they find that they have plenty of room for the fun items too. Managing time, attention and effort toward goals are all elements of self-regulation that can be fostered at early ages.  There are so many behaviors, tools and habits that promote learning which can be taught early in life. Students learn what a productive work space might look like when they practice analyzing a particular setting for distractions. They test out strategies like breaking large tasks into pieces using clocks and time-telling for pacing, and using checklists to organize tasks.   They realize that what helps one student focus might not be right for another student. Listening to music while working, for example, may be a huge distraction for some, or it may be just the thing that helps drown out environmental distractions for others. Presenting these sorts of tools and strategies to students and allowing them to find what works can be an empowering experience for a child. “It helps them develop their capacity for learning and fosters early success, which leads them to function with an attitude of, ‘I can do this!’” says Mr. Johnson.    Psychology tells us that people tend to act in ways that are consistent with their self-image, so when children view themselves as capable learners, able to use a variety of tools and strategies that yield positive results, they will continue to hone those skills that are working for them. Today’s students have limitless information at their fingertips – its our job to help them use it.  Elizabeth Drumm is the Lower School counselor.

Middle School Faculty Teaches Art, Reading Across the Curriculum   By Nick Robbe    Known for having text and images pop off the page, comic books and graphic novels delight people of all ages.     James Hinton, an eighth grader in the Harold C. Schott Middle School at The Summit Country Day School, is doing his best to make those same images jump off the wall in Middle School Language Arts teacher Brendan McEachern’s room.    As a crosscurricular project during the school year, James is creating a 10x10 mural incorporating characters from the Marvel Comics Universe.  

Mr. McEachern’s classroom is not the only place where you see Language Arts come together with other subjects. The Middle School faculty members work hard to ensure that lesson plans and curricula are fully integrated.     “If a reader opens a Middle School student’s portfolio, one will find writing samples on a multitude of subjects,” Mr. McEachern says. “Stories about scientific notation are interspersed with math word problem responses and thoughts about world cultures.”     When Mr. McEachern arrived at The Summit, he introduced “Two years ago, comic books James produced and graphic his version of the novels into the graphic novel, curriculum. Feathers,” Mr. “When I McEachern says. started in “A year later, 2016, I wanted I asked James to engage if he would be students in Eighth grader James Hinton works on a mural in his language arts classroom by interested in nontraditional incorporating some of the popular Marvel graphic novel characters. creating a mural on reading a classroom wall analysis. incorporating popular Marvel characters. James has been penciling the mural all year and may “By showcasing comic books, graphic novels be painting it through the summer and into the and daily comic strips within a classroom, we fall.”  can discuss vocabulary, narrative structure,   characters, and a wide array of literary devices.  On the opposite wall in Mr. McEachern’s room, There is a buzz in the room when I move Mary Towell ‘18, when she was in Middle through a comic’s panel, and students discuss School, painted a collage of famous scenes from word choice, narration and point of view. Harry Potter and Peter Pan.  Students also enjoy when I have them become a comic strip creator by telling a simple narrative in only four small panels.”  Summit Magazine 25

NEWSMAKERS Three seniors shared their Science Research Institute findings with outside groups. Victoria Walton presented a poster at the American College of Cardiology’s annual conference in New Orleans in March. She had assisted with a clinical cardiology study at Mercy Health – The Heart Institute. Hudson Nuss presented his poster on monarch butterfly conservation at the Cincinnati Nature Center’s Conservation Summit in April. Filippo Tosolini submitted his research for publication to the National High School Journal of Science. Freshman Jack Crane presented a session on website design at the World Robotics Competition in Detroit in April. He was selected as one of a few students in the country presenting at the event.  Junior Junbo “Tom” Li and senior Hanchen “Jeffery” Huang were invited to the Ohio High School Mathematics Invitational Olympiad in Columbus. This was Jeffery’s fourth time and Tom’s second appearance at the state competition. Tom’s score on the American Math Competition (AMC) 12 exam was the highest of all Ohio students, making him the state’s No. 1 mathlete, and placed him in the top 12 percent nationally. His score qualified him to take the American Invitational Mathematics exam.


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Awards. Catherine won the Outstanding Witness Award for her work in the blue team’s second trial. Juniors Maliah Bricking and William Fassler won Outstanding Attorney Awards for the “silver” team. Erin Devine, Keene Kreider, Bridget Baker, Jimmy Fraley and Tony Zhang were the other team members. Senior Noor Amir presented independent research she conducted on water quality at the annual Ohio Academy of Science meeting in April. Her peer-reviewed abstract, “Comparing Three Methods for the Best Assessment of Water Quality and Macroinvertebrate Diversity,” was published in the annual Program Abstracts issue of the Ohio Journal of Science.    

For the 13th time in 14 years, The Summit had a team advance to the regionals of the Ohio High School Mock Trial competition. This year, The Summit overruled its competition with the “blue” team winning both rounds. The team consisted of Aaron Bialon, Annie DeRoussel, Pierce Kreider, Alexandra Ragland, Catherine Alway, Caitlin Barnes, Lilly Gieseke and Avery McEachern. Aaron and Pierce won the Outstanding Attorney

Art work by Lower School and Middle School students – L to R, Jack Geers, Lilly Sievering, Benedict Domville, Annette LaLonde and Sebastian Swan – was displayed at state art shows in March.

Five students displayed their artwork at Ohio Art Education Association exhibitions in Columbus. Sixth grader Annette LaLonde and second grader Jack Geers were on display at the Youth Art Month Exhibit. Sixth graders Lilly Sievering and Benedict Domville and third grader Sebastian Swan displayed their works at the Young People’s Art Exhibit. Both shows ran from Feb. to March.

Gold key Scholastic winners are, L to R, sophomore Ellie Adam, senior Gillian Fajack and sophomore Emma Mautz.

Eight Summit students earned 17 awards in the Regional Scholastic Art and Writing Awards ceremony in February. Senior Gillian Fajack received 10 Scholastic awards, including three gold keys in photography. Sophomores Emma Mautz and Ellie Adam earned gold keys in the drawing and illustration and ceramics and glass categories, respectively. Senior Chris Ralph and sophomore Andrew Reder each received silver keys for raku pots. Junior Sophia Zeilstra and sophomores Chris Whitney and Matthew Casanas earned honorable mentions for their ceramics.

Student Newsmakers Eighth grader Logan Miller was the last speller standing in a field of 25 spellers who participated in the Middle School spelling bee. He spelled the following words to earn champion status: loaf, boasted, dormer, antagonism, armada and bronchitis.  

Fifth graders Kadyn Keeney and Hana Conte won an Excellence in Acting Award at the Junior Theater Festival in January in Atlanta. They performed with 3,300 other students from 28 states and five different countries in the world’s biggest celebration of young people participating in musical theater.  

Band members, L to R, freshmen Irene Calderon, sophomores Tommy DiPaola and Grant Gerhardt, and freshmen Alan Liu, and CJ Replogle earned “superior” ratings in the Ohio Music Education Association (OMEA) Solo and Ensemble event in January at Elder High School. Summit students swept the top five awards in two divisions of the 2019 Jerry Tollifson Art Criticism Open. In Division 1, grades one and two, Anna Min won while Sofia Costea and Natalie Campbell earned second and third place, respectively. In Division 2, grades 3-5, fourth graders Danny Beyerbach and Wyatt Gockerman won first and second place, respectively. Their essays were displayed at the Youth Art Month show at the State Teachers Retirement Systems Building in Columbus and were

featured online. In addition, Anna and Danny were included in an issue of Ohio ArtLine, a publication of the Ohio Art Educator’s Association. Freshman Irene Calderon, eighth grader Jack Hollenbeck and seventh graders Tarek Hasan and David Schnitter were selected for the Ohio Music Education Association District 14 Honor Bands. The four student musicians played in the January concerts at Princeton High School.  

Seventh grader Alek Stanisic secured the top spot in the Middle School’s annual Geography Bee in January, earning a place in the state competition. He knew that Sweden is the host of the Alpine World Ski Championships. Classmate TJ LaMacchia was the runner-up.    The Summit inducted 41 members of the class of 2023 into the Round Table Chapter of the National Junior Honor Society. They are: Sophia Anderson, Ella Barnes, Maria Bishop, Mia Booth, Millie Browner, Ali Burns, Trey Butler, Katie Conway, Katie Crowther, Shannon Dennemann, Megan Ebken, Savannah Eveslage, Alaina Fisher, Lavina Grzymajlo, Maya Hajjar, Gwen Hellmann, James Hinton, Jack Hollenbeck, Rimel Kamran, Ryan Kenter, Wali Khan, Gloria Knight, Jed Koenig, Zaiyi “Derek” Kuang, Chloe Lane, Owen McEachern, T.J. McGrath, Patrick

McHugh, William McLane, Nolan Miller, Riley Nelson, Camille Nicholson, Sam Parker, Jack Robinson, PJ Schaaf, Tommy Schaefer, Ryan Schnitter, Madison Sievering, Nicholas Stanis, Yiheng “Ethan” Wu and Drew Zins.   The Summit inducted 60 new members in the National Honor Society. They are juniors Adaliene Andsager, James Armitage, William Bachman, Isabel Bishop, Sydni Black, Maliah Bricking, Abigail Brinkman, Anna Claire Bristow, Conor Brodie, Peyton Bulla, Ryan Burns, Payton Campbell, Lucia Castellini, Katherine Chamberlin, Michelle Chen, Catherine Coldiron, Brian DeWine; Brooke Dittman, Zoe Edmondson, Sophia Evans, Shiyi “Freya” Fang, Douglas Fassler, Makayla Fisher, Meredith Gilbert, Jessica Headley, Elsa Khan, Karmah Khoury, Pierce Kreider, John LaBar, Catherine LaLonde, Junbo “Tom” Li, Maria Luiso, Michael Luttmer, Rachel Martin, Michael Marx, Katherine Nazzaro, Constance Nelson, Leah Neltner; Noah Pacitti, Carissa Parker, Sophia Pilon, Keelin Rademacher, Madeline Riley, Isabella Santamarina, John Schmerge, Isabel Schomburger, Jake Simpson, Rebecca Smith, Michael Stanis, Kathryn Sullivan, Sarah Sutton, Emely Villalba, Emily Warden, Matthew Summit Magazine 27

Student Newsmakers Warden, Sophia Young, Jietong “Thomas” Zhang, Ziyan Zhang and Zejun “Mark” Zhou; and seniors Noah Hudepohl and Mikayla Roma. Junior Matthew Warden achieved a perfect score of 36 on the ACT college entrance exam. Of the 1.9 million students across the country in the class of 2018 who took the test, only 3,741 earned the highest possible score.  

Faculty Newsmakers Kelly Cronin Named Interim US Director Upper School teacher Kelly Cronin has been named Interim Upper School Director for the 2019-20 school year. Ms. Cronin will replace John Thornburg who will become headmaster at Malden Catholic High School in Boston. A national search for a permanent Upper School Director for 2020-21 will be undertaken.   Ms. Cronin was named the Schilderink Family Faculty Chair for Distinguished Teaching in 2014. She was Upper School Dean of Students from 2011 to 2015 with responsibility for student behavior. She has been Upper School scheduling coordinator since 2007. As an emeritus member of the Blackbaud Learning Management System Advisory Board, she interacts with teachers nationwide about best practices in student records management.  

L to R, Michael Stanis, Madeline Riley and Connie Nelson.

Three juniors were selected to participate in two year-long programs sponsored by Cincinnati’s Health Collaborative. Michael Stanis was selected into TAP HC, which “taps” high schoolers interested in health care careers. Connie Nelson and Madeline Riley were chosen for the TAP MD program where students learn about being a physician.

The Summit sent three teams to a Destination Imagination tournament in March. The Monster Hunters team of L to R: Mirabella Bosse, Benedict Domville, Kwadwo Karikari, Finn Kropp, Language Arts teacher Brendan McEachern, Lily Gentes and Kira Njegovan earned first place at the regional Destination Imagination tournament took first place and represented The Summit at the state competition. The team built a structure that held more than 200 pounds and performed a skit involving time travel and a two-headed monster. 28

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She is a member of the steering committee leading the school’s reaccreditation process through the Independent Schools Association of the Central States. She also serves as social studies department coordinator and teaches Advanced Placement (AP) European History and Honors Modern World History – some of the most rigorous courses that the school offers - and has led competitive extracurricular teams. She mentored seven Summit students over the years whose research writing was published in the Concord Review, a national publication which champions high school research writing. She has led a string of Mock Trial teams to regional and state level competition since 2001.  Ms. Cronin has been a member of the College Board AP World History Group since 2006 and the AP European History Teachers Group since 2001. She received a M.A. in Russian history with a minor in European history from Indiana University and a B.A. with distinction and department honors in history and Slavic languages and literature from Northwestern University. She is a member of Phi Beta Kappa. She spent two years in Russia studying the Russian language and history. Prior to her arrival at The Summit, she taught study skills and critical thinking at Miami University’s Hamilton campus and research methods at the University of Cincinnati.  “The Upper School will be in good hands next year,” says Rich Wilson, Head of School. “Kelly is a seasoned and master educator who has already led the school in many roles.”

Faculty Newsmakers Nick J. Accrocco Named College Counseling Director Nick J. Accrocco Ed.D., a 19year veteran administrator in the private school college counseling and university admissions landscape, has been named College Counseling Director for the 2019-20 school year. He will replace Maureen Ferrell who is retiring after 10 years.  Dr. Accrocco is Co-Director of College Counseling at Ranney School in Tinton Falls, N.J. He is also a faculty member and online instructor with the Susanne M. Glasscock School for Continuing Studies: Center for College Readiness at Rice University in Houston where he teaches an internationally-recognized online college counseling certificate program.    Dr. Accrocco received his doctorate in Professional Leadership from the University of Houston, a M.Ed. in Higher Education Administration with a Dean’s Tuition Merit Scholarship from Vanderbilt University, a B.A. in Modern European History and Cultural Anthropology from Vanderbilt and a Certificate in College Counseling from the University of California – Los Angeles (UCLA). Sought-after as a speaker, he has been featured at more than a dozen college search and admissions events in Texas, Florida, New Jersey and Canada. A published author, he has a column on college admissions for the Houston Chronicle and has a book on college admissions pending publication.   Previously, he was College Counselor/Upper School Academic Advisor at St. John’s School in Houston; Auxiliary Application Reader for the Office of Undergraduate Admissions at The University of Pennsylvania; Assistant Director of Admissions at American University’s Kogod School of Business in Washington, D.C.; Admissions Counselor in Vanderbilt University’s Office of Undergraduate Admissions and Undergraduate Tour Guide and Graduate Student Admissions Apprentice at Vanderbilt.   “Nick’s experience, credentials and connections with admissions representatives across the country put him at the top of our nationwide search,” says Head of School Rich Wilson. “We think we’ve found a gem who will give Summit students an advantage in the college search process.” 

Mark Osborne has joined The Summit as the Alumni Engagement and Gifts Officer. He will focus on developing strategies to build alumni engagement and investment in the school, serve as a liaison to the Summit Alumni Board, spearhead alumni activities, lead the committee which selects inductees to the Athletic Hall of Fame, build on alumni programming and manage alumni communication platforms. Mr. Osborne previously served as Mount St. Joseph University Coordinator of Annual Giving and Young Alumni Programs and the Manager of Alumni Programs and Lead Annual Giving. He has a bachelor's degree in management with a minor in business administration from Northern Kentucky University. He is a member of the Council for Advancement and Support of Education, Affiliated Student Advancement Programs and the Association of Fundraising Professionals. See his column on page 55.  Kurtis Smith, Upper School religion teacher and Cotton Family Head Coed Varsity Coach, ran the 100mile Pistol Ultra Run in March in Alcoa, Tennessee. He finished 20 of 127 overall. He was also featured in a January Catholic Telegraph feature story about the Catholic Inner-City Schools Education Fund.    Kirstin Pesola McEachern, Ph.D., who serves as both Curriculum & Instruction Director and Diversity & Inclusion Coordinator, has been selected to serve as an essay reader and interviewer with the Gates Scholarship Foundation. The foundation offers 300 full scholarships per year to exceptional minority, high school seniors. Dr. McEachern and other readers are required to complete a certification to be readers and they evaluate four essays from each of 20 students assigned to them.      A lesson plan created by Upper School teacher Tracy Law '85, Ph.D. entitled "Exploring How Iceland's Physical Geography Impacts Daily Life and Energy Use" was published in the National Council of Geographic Education's journal “The Geography Teacher.”  This was a special issue, focusing on using Iceland as a focus for teaching geography. Dr. Law has led groups of Summit students in National Council for Geographic Education GeoCamp Iceland in the summers of 2017 and 2018. See their blogs at international-law.  

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Summit Latin Club Wins The Summit Country Day School’s Latin Club earned first place in Overall Points at the 2019 Ohio Junior Classical League (OJCL) Convention March 8-10 in Columbus. It was the fourth time in the last five years and eighth in the last 10 that The Summit has claimed the top spot at the convention. Individual students won 18 first-place awards.   Top point earners and first-place winners were: Seventh graders Jackson Campbell and Alek Stanisic; eighth grader Nicholas Stanis; freshmen Abby Almaguer, Irene Calderon, Jimmy Fraley, Kendall Richard, Anna


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Catherine Sansalone and Jennifer Sullivan. sophomores Erin Devine and Elizabeth Fahrmeier; juniors Maliah Bricking, Ryan Burns, Michelle Chen, Mike Hall, Connie Nelson and Kathryn Sullivan; and seniors, Julia Dean and Beckett Schiaparelli. The state champion certamen Novice Level team included Wali Khan, Sam Parker, Alek Stanisic and Nicholas Stanis.  Junior Ryan Burns was elected president. He is the sixth Summit student to be OJCL’s top officer. Summit students have held offices every year for the past 21 years. Senior Julia Dean

Front row, L to R: Erin Devine, Morgan Nuss, Julia Dean, Elsa Khan, Irene Calderon, Alek Stanisic, Carson Hall, C.C. Chavez, Jackson Campbell, Jimmy Fraley, A.C. Sansalone and Ava Norton. Back row: Larry Dean, Nicholas Stanis, Aidan Lawler, Matthew Warden, Beckett Schiaparelli, Ryan Burns, Connie Nelson, Evan Lakhia, Michelle Chen, Isa Bishop, Maliah Bricking, Parker Bricking, Matthew Casanas, Abby Almaguer, Maddie Sumnar, Tommy Schaefer, Kathryn Sullivan, Ryan Kenter, Sam Parker, Kendall Richard, Logan Miller and Lisa Mays. Not pictured: Ethan Lam, Benny Penote, Wali Khan, Jennifer Sullivan, Elizabeth Fahrmeier, Lee Armitage, Mike Hall, Isha Tamrakar and Brigid Devine.

ins State Championship 
 was elected Parliamentarian of the collegiate level Ohio Senior Classical League (OSCL).  Her brother, Tullus Dean ‘17, now a student at Xavier University, was elected president of the OSCL.    Summit Latin teacher Lisa Mays ’05 completed her first year as the State Chair of Students. She leads the Latin Club with Upper School teacher Larry Dean. Right: Kendall Richard won first place at state for this bead mosaic which depicted the classic story about Echo and Narcissus.

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2018 Parent Survey Results Every three years, The Summit undertakes a community survey as part of the accreditation cycle for the Independent Schools Association of the Central States. Feedback from the survey helps administration and faculty measure how well we deliver on our promise to bring out the best in intellect, character and leadership of every student. Parents surveyed in October 2018 gave The Summit high marks, and in many cases (denoted with a + mark), their ratings were significantly higher than the benchmark for other independent schools.

 Parent ratings of these attributes reflect % of parents who selected Excellent or Very Good.




Buildings & Grounds




The school is building character and leadership skills in my child. 





Administration/ Staff



Business Office




Board of Trustees


Food Service


Alumni Relations

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Teachers at The Summit The Summit has understand provided a good and believe system whereby the in my teacher or faculty advisor child. takes a proactive role in guiding my child/ children. 


The Summit school is well managed.


The Summit teachers do a good job helping to develop the social skills of my child/ children.


In addition to the questions that compare The Summit with other independent schools, parents gave us high marks in a series of questions that are specific The school supports religious diversity to The Summit within The Summit community while maintaining its Summit does Summit does Catholic a good job in a good job identity. preparing my teaching my child to be child creative a global problemcitizen. solving The Summit skills.  The Summit partners with fosters growth me to educate my child/ in my child/ children in a way that children’s faith produces measurable formation. 





growth toward fulfilling their God-given potential.


 Parents rated these attributes above the independent school benchmark. 
 (Reflects % of parents who selected Excellent or Very Good)  89%+ Overall Quality of Education




The school supports academic achievement. 

The school has a strong commitment to moral values and character development. 

Positive school spirit is evident.

88%+ Science 
 86%+ Academic Program   86%+ English/ Language Arts 86%+ Library/ Media   85%+ Academic Departments 85%+ History/ Social Studies   85%+ Classroom   81%+ Comparative Quality of Education   80%+ Overall Student Development 79%+ Student Character Development




Both boys and girls have an equal opportunity for success.  

The school has a caring and community environment.

The school encourages professional development of the faculty.

88%+ Each student feels well-known by the school. 

88%+ The school is adequately funded.

88%+ The school mission is widelyknown and endorsed.

78%+ Public Speaking 78%+ Geography




Parents rated these attributes above the independent school benchmark. (Reflects parents who selected Agree or Strongly Agree)


87% +

The school mission is largely achieved.

The student dress code is appropriate.

87% +

78%+ Religion/Ethics 76%+ Overall Extracurricular Activities

The school places the right emphasis on grades and evaluation of student work.

75%+ Foreign/ World Language 74%+ Community Service




73%+ CounselingGuidance 73%+ Athletics

The school encourages faculty leadership. 

The school has a commitment to a racially, culturally, and economically diverse enrollment.

The school is innovative in its educational 33 offerings. Summit Magazine 33

Front row, L to R: Sophomore Evan Lakhia, sophomore Matthew Brumfield, senior Luke Desch and sophomore Andrew Wagner. Middle row L to R: sophomore Sean LaMacchia, senior Elijah Weaver, junior Catherine Coldiron, junior Katie Chamberlin and junior Brian DeWine. Back row L to R: senior Yurui “Jerry” Wu, senior Daniel Shisler, Cotton Family Head Coed Varsity Coach Kurtis Smith and senior Nick Dahling pose with the state runner-up trophy the team earned during the cross country season.

Cross Country & Track Team Numbers Swell with Heightened Interest By Nick Robbe Cotton Family Head Coed Varsity Coach Kurtis Smith’s favorite story of all time has nothing to do with a state championship race.   It involves Katie Thurner ’11, who decided to run cross country in the fall of her senior year. The impetus came from her younger sister, who ran for the team. Katie had never been on a team with her sister. At the beginning of each season, Coach Smith has the team run a mile time trial. Katie clocked in at 11 minutes, 25 seconds. During the season, Katie’s goal became breaking the 10-minute mark.   “She knew she was never going to be on varsity, but she showed up and worked hard,” Coach Smith says. “At the end of the year, we do the same mile time trial for every kid, who is not on the postseason roster, to show them how far they’ve come.” Katie certainly came a long way. 34

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She raced around the track a full four minutes ahead of her time from the start of the season, clocking in at seven minutes, 13 seconds. “You would have thought it was a state championship race,” he says. “All the kids were around the track and going crazy for her.” Katie’s experience from that fall is at the crux of the way Coach Smith leads the running programs here at The Summit. As long as a student shows up and is willing to work, he or she has a spot on the team. The expectation for every athlete is the same, remembering they represent much more than just themselves inside and outside the classroom.  But before he could get kids to work hard and buy into his system, he had work to do in terms of increasing his teams’ numbers.  Ten years ago, when he started the indoor track program, there were 12 kids signed up for

the team. All, with the exception of one, were distance runners. Last season, the team’s number ballooned to 107. “Initially, the goal with it was to keep the distance kids running and then it grew to what it was last year with the 107 runners,” Mr. Smith says. “I knew that if we could create an indoor track team, the running program as a whole would benefit greatly.”  In the years since, he’s been proven absolutely right. His cross country and track teams’ numbers have swelled due to an increase in retention and interest. The runners who came out for indoor track stayed on to run track and field, and some even continued into cross country the next fall.   However, were it not for the longer length of rope Athletic Director Greg Dennis gave Coach Smith, the cross country program might not exist as The Summit community knows it today.  When the two met during Mr. Dennis’ first year, the idea was that it was going to be a one-year situation, and the program would end after that season because there were not that many students interested in running cross country. Between the boys and girls, there were only five athletes in all. Coach Smith countered, saying he

needed at least two years to attempt to build the program. Fortunately, Mr. Dennis granted the extra year. Perhaps more fortuitous was the arrival of Colin Cotton ’11.   Colin is one of the most decorated runners in the history of the school. He won the 2010 Division III state championship in cross country. In 2011, he won the 3,200-meter race in the track and field state meet.   However, his legacy extends beyond the banner that hangs in Flannery Gym. Colin, along with his fellow harriers, helped build the program into what it is today: a local, regional and state powerhouse. Since the 2009-2010 season, both the boys’ and girls’ varsity cross country teams have won the Miami Valley Conference championship in nine of the past 10 years.  The boys have won eight district titles and the girls have claimed nine during that same time span. The boys have qualified for the state championship race seven out of those 10 years, finishing second on two occasions. The girls reached the state championship race in 2013 for the first time in school history.  

L to R: Coach Kim Horning, Cotton Family Head Coed Varsity Coach Kurtis Smith, Brian DeWine, Daniel Shisler, Andrew Wagner, Evan Lakhia, Elijah Weaver, Matthew Brumfield, Sean LaMacchia, Luke Desch and Coach Jerry Hilton get their official photo taken atMagazine the podium35 35 Summit of the state cross country race.

Sophomore Rachael Montgomery, Coach Kim Horning, junior Sydni Black, senior Gillian Fajack, junior Payton Campbell, junior Aidan Lindy, junior Adaliene Andsager and junior Katie Chamberlin pause for a photo during an indoor track meet.

“Colin walked in the door and brought some of his friends with him,” Mr. Smith says. “That sort of became a mantra. Every year, I tell however many kids we have to get one other kid to run. So if every kid gets one kid, we double our team every year. That’s still the mantra today. I tell the kids at the end of the year that there are kids in this building who you know should be running, so why aren’t they?” That mantra is probably the biggest reason junior Catherine Coldiron is with the team now. Mr. Smith, with help from older brother, Conrad ’18, stayed on her case any time he saw her run on her own. Her response early in that process was simple: “No way.”  However, after giving it some thought, Catherine’s feelings changed. Now, she’s one of the team’s top runners. Last year, she ran in the state championship cross country and track and field meets.  This season, she became the all-time best finisher at the state meet for a Summit girl cross country runner, placing 24th overall and earning All-Ohio honors.      “The next step for me is probably running in college, but more importantly, I want to have 36

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the consistency and self-discipline of running throughout my whole life,” Catherine says. Mr. Smith has his own reasons for running, and they certainly fuel him to push toward his goals. After finishing Cincinnati’s Flying Pig marathon last year, he turned around, ran back to mile 16 and then turned around again to go back to the finish line – a distance of fifty miles for the day after his warm-up and cool-down periods. In March, he ran the 100-mile Pistol Ultra Run in March in Alcoa, Tennessee, finishing 18 of 127 overall.  “I am crazy,” Mr. Smith says. “I wanted to run 100 miles in one day, and I wanted to see where I was mentally with half that distance. I’ve been in better physical shape before, but I know I can do it. It’s just the mental game of convincing yourself that you’re going to be running for 24 hours. To do that, you have to be a little crazy.”  However, you don’t have to be crazy to at least try your legs at running.   “I encourage everyone to just try and run because it can bring you to a place in your life that you may have never expected,” says Margo Dailey ’17, now a runner at the University of Tampa.

Summit Sports Sophomore Rachael Montgomery prepares to leap into the sand pit during the long jump event at an indoor track meet.

Six seniors committed to collegiate teams in February and March. Connor Woodruff and Alonzo Motley signed to play football at Division I University of Dayton. Wil Eads signed to play football for Division I Eastern Kentucky University. Dane Barker committed to play lacrosse at Division III Marietta College. Caitlin Barnes will play soccer at Division III Washington and Lee in Virginia. Bennett Caruso will play soccer at Division III University of Mount Union in Alliance, Ohio.   The total number of athletes committed to college teams so far this year is eight. In November, seniors Colleen McIlvenna and Kennidy Belle signed to play Division I soccer at the University of Tennessee and Iowa State University, respectively. Colleen also played in the sixth annual girls’ high school allAmerican game in December in Orlando. 
 Athletic Director Greg Dennis was nominated for four awards from the Southwest Ohio Athletic Directors Association: Sportsmanship, Ethics and Integrity (SEI); Distinguished Service Award; Citation Award and Athletic Director of the Year. He was also nominated to serve on the organization’s board as an Ethnic Minority Representative.  

Cotton Family Head Coed Varsity Coach Kurtis Smith urges one of his athletes to run faster.

L to R: Brian DeWine, Matthew Brumfield and Elijah Weaver lead a pack of runners during a cross country race.

L to R: Bennett Caruso, Caitlin Barnes and Wil Eads are photographed during a ceremony when they signed to play, respectively, soccer at Division III University of Mount Union, soccer at Division III Washington and Lee in Virginia and football at Division I Eastern Kentucky University. Behind them: Head of School Rich Wilson, Boys’ Soccer Head Coach Scott Sievering, Girls’ Soccer Head CoachSummit Mike Fee,Magazine Football Head 37 Coach Justin Isaacs and Athletic Director Greg Dennis.

Freshman JP Tew returns a shot during squash practice.

Freshman Is National Junior Squash Champion By Nick Robbe Freshman John Paul “JP” Tew was in control of the boys’ squash national championship match for the under 15-year-old division. He hadn’t played the best version of his game, but despite that he was still standing on the precipice of victory. Until he wasn’t.   JP’s opponent, the No. 1-ranked player in the country for his age group, scratched and clawed his way back into the match, winning four points in a row to force the fifth and deciding game. “I 38

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came off the court and said ‘What did you just do?’” JP says. “I was really nervous heading into that fifth game.” The fifth game began with the scoreboard in JP’s favor. He held a 6-2 lead and felt good about his game. Then, nerves crept up and so did his opponent.   With the lead now evaporated, JP had to collect himself and develop a new strategy. Realizing his opponent wasn’t going to willingly acquiesce the championship, JP prepared for the grind.

“In the finals of a tournament like this, you aren’t always going to be playing your best squash,” JP says. “My goal was to outlast him, tire him out and run him around the court. That’s the reason I won the match. He ended up making a few errors, including one on match ball, because he was so tired.” The win, his third consecutive championship for his age group, helped JP secure his place in history. No player from the Midwest has ever won back-to-back-to-back titles.   “Squash is stronger on the east and west coasts, so repeat championships have been won by plenty of players from those regions,” he says. “But it’s never been done by anyone from Cincinnati, so that was really special. This most recent one was the hardest for me. In previous years, I won by bigger margins. But in this one, I played a guy who had won every single tournament that year, was No. 1 the entire year and hadn’t been beaten. I’ve never worked so hard.”  Squash is difficult to comprehend for people who haven’t played. There isn’t much that can be gleaned from watching a two-minute video. The object of the game is simple enough: a player earns a victory in the match by winning three out of five games. Games are played to 11 points.    After that, it gets murky.  So much more goes into the sport than hitting balls against the wall. There are plenty of techniques and strategies a player can utilize, but they still have to follow the rules.  Players alternate hitting the ball against the front wall and can use the other three walls of the court as long as the ball reaches the front wall at some point before hitting the ground.   Once it hits the front wall, the opposing player must return the ball before it bounces twice. Points are scored when one player cannot retrieve the ball before it bounces twice or when a ball is struck out of bounds.    “It really is like a game of chess,” JP says. “The mental part of the game is just as important if not more important than the physical part. You can

JP is the only player from the Midwest to win back-to-backto-back squash national championships.

lay out these plans, but your body won’t always execute them. It’s a really difficult sport.” Fortunately, JP has been practicing and honing his craft since the age of two. That’s when his father, Neal, the captain of a Harvard national championship squash team and 1985 graduate of Boys Middle School, first introduced him to the sport. He started practicing and taking lessons at six. He’s been hooked ever since.   During the height of his season, which runs from August to March, he will play six times a week, about one-to-three hours a day.   This season has proven that JP is not only highlyskilled on the court, he’s also resilient.   After a September injury cost him two months of the season and a disappointing appearance in a national tournament, he regrouped to win the Midwest Regional Championship in the Under 17 Division.   In January, he traveled to Philadelphia and earned another championship, this time a Tier 2 national tournament. Later that month, he traveled to San Francisco and upset the fifthand-sixth seeds, his first victories against top-10 opponents in a higher division.  He traveled to Boston in February for the final national tournament of the year and then Summit Magazine 39

JP prepares to serve during a practice session.

advanced to the National Championship at the University of Virginia. At that tournament, JP upset the No. 1 player in the nation in the quarterfinals. He finished fourth in the tournament, the highest finish by a 15-year-old.    Before enrolling at The Summit, JP, a St. Margaret of York graduate, played volleyball after his squash season concluded. Given that The Summit currently doesn’t offer boys’ volleyball at the Upper School level, JP figured tennis would be the most logical fit. There are some similarities between the two sports, especially in terms of playing at the net and the overhead shots.   JP is a talent on the court, but his is also a prime example of a leader of character and a good sportsman.  “We are very proud of all the effort and heart he puts into competing,” Neal says. “However, we are most proud of the way he lives out his faith values in his sport.”    JP said a lot of other players will go out of their way to tip the balance in their favor, whether it’s intentionally showing up late to a game, faking injuries, or lobbying with officials for calls. With that in mind, JP says he prides himself on being a fair player and one who is gracious in victory and defeat.  

JP was the No. 8-ranked player in his division going into the national championship tournament at Virginia.

When he’s not making it difficult for his opponents on the court, he enjoys playing music and keeping up with his studies. After four years of playing piano, he switched to the guitar. JP enjoys playing worship concerts with friends and at Christian sports camps. In addition to its world-class Character Education program, The Summit prides itself on having a rigorous academic curriculum. It’s one of the main reasons families decide to send their kids to The Summit. JP is no different.  When he is between matches, JP is making sure his schoolwork is completed prior to either watching a movie or relaxing.  “I take pride in academics,” he says. “It’s the main reason I came to The Summit.”  

40 40 Spring Magazine 2018-19 JP and Jon Geekie, Head Squash Pro, T Squash Academy.

Junior Connie Nelson smashes a shot back toward the wall. She was named a US Squash Scholar Athlete for the second year in a row.

Connie Nelson Named US Squash Scholar Athlete By Nick Robbe Like JP Tew, junior Connie Nelson is also making a name for herself in the sport of squash.   Connie was named a US Squash Scholar Athlete for the second year in a row. She has been on that list of student-athletes since 2016. Also, Connie is ranked 54th in the country for her age group. The US Squash Scholar Athlete Award recognizes high school students who have a 3.5 grade point average or higher and played in an approved number of tournaments and matches at the end of a school year.   At The Summit, Connie is involved in the Latin Club and won several awards at the national convention this summer.  Several Summit students, alumni, parents and grandparents also have become volunteers or supporters of the Cincinnati Squash Academy downtown. In addition to providing a place for Summit students to play squash, the academy provides free coaching to underserved urban youth in hopes the game is transformational in their lives and the academic guidance provided by coaches, staff and volunteers helps players on a path to college. 

41 Summit Magazine 41

Summit’s Newest Scholars Expand our Legacy Front row, L to R: Lillian Charville, Anastasia Leyendecker, Mary “Quinn” Donnelly (goes by Quinn), Maya Wood, Kelsey Bello, Mia Fiore, and Arielle Barnes. Second row: Kyla Irby, Rimel Kamran, Gabrielle Martin, Shannon Dennemann, Liliana Friesen and Ana Isabella Benavides Orta. Third row: Patrick McHugh, Logan Miller, Kayla Allen, Kennedi Dukes and Andrew Shuler. Fourth row: Austen Young, Jerome Goodloe, Dalton Slusher, Thomas Stines and James Gruber.

By Nancy Berlier and Nick Robbe Kelsey Bello is a leader. She’s organized, committed, determined and competitive. She likes to be in the company of other highly-motivated students. A voracious reader, she likes to write poetry, short fantasies and argumentative essays. She is a standout goalkeeper in one of the most competitive leagues in the country. Coming from a large public school district, she says The Summit’s small classes attracted her because she can participate more, have more interaction with teachers and feel safer if she happens to voice the wrong answer. In her application essay, she writes: “Knowing this really provides a safety net for every time you raise your hand in class. The smaller class size offers an increased level of comfort for me to grow and mature as a student, and I truly see the value and impact this would have on me.” Shannon Dennemann is curious. She is interested in lots of things: spiritual development, diversity and inclusion, community service, recycling, writing, history, citizenship, band, theater and volleyball. She already knows what The Summit is like, because she has been here for four years. She writes: “The Summit community values academics … While academics are extremely important, The Summit community also puts 42

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great emphasis on being a well-rounded individual.” Luckily, The Summit has a lot of extracurricular activities for her curious mind to explore. Mary “Quinn” Donnelly is creative. She has a deep love of the performing arts. She sings, acts, plays the piano and is particularly accomplished at the viola. She helped write and direct a short film called “Nut Case” which won the 2018 Gold Lion Award for Best Junior High Film in a 12-state region. The daughter of alumna Bridgette Donnelly‘ 05, she knows a lot about The Summit. “It is a school that encourages the students’ personal growth beyond just grades and scores,” she says. “At The Summit, values are the heart of everything,” she says. Leadership, curiosity and creativity are three of the qualities The Summit hopes to find in students applying for the Upper School. “Of course we are looking for students who are eager for the academic rigor of The Summit, but we also want students who have potential to become the changemakers and peacemakers that our world needs,” says Rich Wilson, Head of School. “We believe these students have tremendous potential to become leaders of character.”

Kelsey, Shannon and Quinn are the first students to receive The Summit Family Fund Scholarship. Created by combining 55 small family funds into one, this is now the school’s second largest scholarship fund. “We are very grateful that we could offer this scholarship now,” says Kelley Schiess, Assistant Head of School for Enrollment Management and Special Projects. “Our donors continue to show a passion and dedication to our mission to develop intellectually strong, empathetic people who have the strength of character to lead positive change.” Altogether, The Summit awarded 23 endowed scholarships and 34 merit scholarships to 57 incoming freshmen in March. Each merit scholar was selected based on high academic achievement, testing, character references, teacher recommendations, an individual interview and an essay. Students who were selected for endowed scholarships meet criteria established by parents, grandparents, alumni and friends of The Summit who believe in the mission of the school and want to help future generations of students get The Summit advantage. Endowed scholarships were given to these students: Marc Bohlke Memorial Scholarship, Kayla Allen, Mason Middle School.

Carolyn and John R. LaBar Family Scholarship, James Gruber, St. Gertrude. Virginia Pohl Family Scholarship, Logan Miller, The Summit. Ragland Family Scholarship, Ana Isabella Benavides Orta, All Saints; Rimel Kamran, The Summit; Maya Wood, Bethany School. Marge and Charles J. Schott Scholarship, Gabrielle Martin, Sacred Heart of Jesus. Summit Family Fund Scholarship, Kelsey Bello, Mason Middle School; Shannon Dennemann, The Summit; Mary Donnelly, Walnut Hills. Arthur and Irma Theobald Scholarship, Arielle Barnes, St. Boniface; Kennedi Dukes, St. Joseph; Jerome Goodloe, St. Mary-Hyde Park; Austen Young, Bethany School. Richard F. Williams SBS ’58 Scholarship, Dalton Slusher, St. Ignatius of Loyola. William J. Williams SBS ’29 Scholarship, Thomas Stines, St. Gertrude. Carol Ann and Rich Wilson Family Scholarship, Andrew Shuler, St. Margaret of York.

Mary Foss Brinkmeyer ’67 Scholarship, Anastasia Leyendecker, Homeschool. Susan S. Castleberry Scholarship, Lillian Charville, St. Margaret of York. Patricia and Joseph H. Clasgens II SBS ’37 Scholarship, Patrick McHugh, The Summit. Ruth Jung Conway ’46 Memorial Scholarship, Liliana Friesen, Mason Middle School. James E. Evans Scholarship, Kyla Irby, Sacred Heart of Jesus. Robert T. Hertzel ’81 Memorial Scholarship, Mia Fiore, St. Gertrude.

Recipients of the school’s newest endowed scholarship, the Summit Family Fund Scholarship, are Kelsey Bello, Shannon Dennemann and Mary “Quinn” Donnelly. Summit Magazine 43

Fragge Scholars: Making An Impact By Nancy Berlier

Seven current students are recipients of the Marc Gerard Fragge ‘83 Memorial Scholarship. Front row, L to R, Nicholas T. Ciaccio ’22, Jake Simpson ’20 and Parker T. Bricking ’22. Back row, Aidan Lindy ’20, Matthew Warden ’20 and Carter B. Bibler ’22. Not pictured: Sophia Young ’20. 44

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What does a stock exchange trader in Boulder have in common with a health research programmer in Ann Arbor? How does a leadership strategist in Philadelphia make the same list as a Google compensation associate in San Francisco? How does a Chicago attorney who served two tours in Iraq mesh with a Washington D.C. attorney who served two years in Kenya in the Peace Corps? Where is the common ground for a naval architect in San Diego and a global finance attorney in London? Why are a fourth grade teacher in East Harlem and college admission representative in St. Louis in the same sentence? The answer: They are all Fragge Scholars.     The Marc Gerard Fragge ‘83 Memorial Scholarship was established in 1988 and is The Summit’s first endowed scholarship. To date, it has been given to 45 individuals whose multifaceted lives have exemplified Marc’s “aim high” attitude about curiosity, fitness and spirituality.     “As a whole, the Fragge Scholars are an accomplished group of academically high achievers whose Summit education landed them

Adam Keslosky ’98 with his wife, Meg, son Jack and daughter Anna.

into top colleges,” says Kelley Schiess, Assistant Head of School for Enrollment Management and Special Projects. “They exemplify Marc’s personal drive to challenge himself academically, athletically and spiritually. They have become skilled leaders with a passion for service.”   The Fragge Scholars recall inspirational Summit teachers and coaches who expected them to work hard, act with integrity, give back, remain curious and seek challenges. They say Advanced Placement classes gave them a head start in college. They note competitive high school athletics led to Division I collegiate teams. They also cherish lasting friendships that took root here.    One of the earliest Fragge Scholars was Adam Keslosky ’98 whose degrees from the University of Pennsylvania and University of Chicago propelled him into a successful career as an options trader in Chicago and self-employment as a commodities derivatives trader in Boulder. “I owe so much to my days at The Summit,” he says. “Of course, I received a top-shelf education, but perhaps what proved to be more important, however, were the multitude of ways that Summit allows students to develop a sense of independence and grow as a leader. Whether it was in the classroom or on the ballfield, Summit really gave me the confidence to compete as I set out for college and beyond.”    Melinda (Curran) MacDougall ’06, a senior programmer for a health research collaborative in Ann Arbor, says The Summit gave her advantages in college academics and athletics. “I was able to take a wide variety of Advanced Placement courses and earned over a year’s worth of college credit,” she says. “This allowed me to graduate college in only three years.” Her Summit athletic career prompted her to venture away from home for a spot on Division I Central Michigan University’s field hockey team. “My time at Summit cultivated a desire to seek out new challenges and never settle for just running through the motions,” she says. “This has served me well in my career as I found my home as a programmer at a company committed to improving the quality of care for patients in healthcare.”    Summit Magazine 45

A Columbia University graduate, Mark Dato ’06 is a program director for a design and strategy consultancy in Philadelphia. He helps leaders transform organizations and teams and has worked on high-impact projects with Weight Watchers, American Association of Retired Persons and Google. The late Dr. Tom Monoco, who was Upper School Director when Mark attended The Summit, made a lasting impression. “The leaders I admire most fully embody Doc. Monoco’s mantra of ‘Respect, Responsibility and Civility,’ ” he says. “Summit gave me a great foundation to learn what makes a great leader of character.” Mark says The Summit fueled his curiosity and he continues to gravitate to work that he believes is doing good in the world. “Amazing teachers, like Kelly Cronin, helped me see past my limits,” he says. Bradley Evans ’10, a Howard University graduate and leadership compensation consultant at Google in San Francisco, credits The Summit with opening doors for him. “The small class sizes and invested teachers created a great learning environment that really caused me to push myself academically. Athletically, I had opportunities to build relationships with my teammates and compete against some impressive athletes around the city.” Bradley also developed a passion for service and has mentored at-risk children, cleaned homeless shelters and helped maintain sustainable gardens used for food banks.   As an attorney with U.S. Customs and Border Protection in Chicago, Frank Albi ’01 provides legal advice to the largest uniformed law enforcement agency in the country. The Fragge Scholarship engendered an ongoing 46

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dedication to service and leadership, he says. Frank had two tours of combat service in Iraq with the Marines. “Obviously, such service and dedication were cornerstones of Marc’s life, and through their endowment in his name, the Fragges have created a lasting legacy that will endure for generations as Summit students continue to grow in grace and wisdom and ultimately become outstanding leaders and citizens in the global community.” The Summit also installed a deep sense of civic duty in Megan Browder ’02, a Washington D.C. attorney. Between getting a bachelor’s degree from Columbia University and a law degree from Yale University, she served two years in the Peace Corps in Narok, Kenya. With prestigious legal internships on her resume, she is thankful to the Fragges for the gift of the scholarship. “Summit was a lifedefining experience for me and opened many doors for my future,” she says.  For Cathryn “Stacey” Bishop ’08, a naval engineering project manager in San Diego, and Carrie (Jantsch) Leonard ’05, a litigation finance portfolio advisor in London, Carrie (Jantsch) Leonard ’05 England, The Summit provided a well-rounded experience stressing academics, leadership and holistic personal development that has influenced their adult lives.   Stacey credits The Summit with giving her leadership skills that she uses every day and a great education. “More than the education, which is vital, I think the biggest influences on me during my time at Summit were the teachers’ enthusiasm for their subjects and their encouragement of their students, pushing us in healthy ways to achieve more and be better people.”  Carrie says The Summit laid a foundation for intellectual curiosity and personal development. “I am grateful for the opportunity to have

attended a school that demands academic excellence while also allowing students to explore personal, social, athletic and spiritual endeavors.”   Elizabeth “Libby” Meininger ‘11, a graduate of Columbia University, spent the last three years teaching at a charter school in East Harlem. “Summit’s academics are rigorous, but what I think is unique to The Summit experience is the focus on character development and service.”    Jeffrey Roth ’02 is a college admissions representative for Lincoln College of Technology in Indianapolis who works out of St. Louis.  He also serves as a middle school coach. He says Summit’s inclusion of “physical” in its five pillars inspires him now to use athletics as a tool for developing the whole student. “Summit’s teachers and staff are principled people with extraordinary talent and passion,” he says “They are the kind of people who you want to make proud by your actions and efforts.”   Michael Bruns ’08, a patent litigation attorney in Washington D.C., made lasting friendships here, even coming back to be married in the chapel. “Even though I’ve traveled all over the world, and lived in more than five cities, I still keep in touch with the close friends I made there,” he says.   Sydney Beckmeyer ‘16, who helped the James Madison University lacrosse team win the 2018 Division I national championship, expects that will be her story too. “The Summit was and still is my home,” she says. “Summit also provided me with

Who Was Marc Fragge?   Marc Fragge graduated from The Summit in 1983 and received an engineering degree from Dartmouth College. In a tragic accident on Oct. 16, 1988, a mountainside he was climbing in New Hampshire’s White Mountains broke away. He was just 23 years old.  As a young man, Marc left an indelible impression on those who knew him, encouraging and challenging them to use their God given gifts to the best of their ability. Says one classmate: “Marc was an aim high kind of guy before we had the ‘Aim High’ slogan.” 
  Marc’s parents, Dr. Ron and Betty Fragge, established the Marc Gerard Fragge ‘83 Memorial Scholarship in 1988 to assist qualified students who exemplify Marc’s personal dedication to academic achievement, athletic involvement and spiritual growth. In its 25th anniversary year, classmates conducted a fundraising challenge to increase the size of the endowment so more students could receive the scholarship. As The Summit’s first endowed scholarship, the Fragge scholarship is the school’s most prolific one. To date, 45 students have received it.  If you would like to help celebrate Marc’s life, please donate to the Marc Gerard Fragge ’83 Scholarship. You may mail a check to The Summit, c/o The Development Office, 2161 Grandin Road, Cincinnati, OH 45208, or donate through a secure online portal at 

Summit Magazine 47

Fragge Scholar Roll Call   Christopher Kenney ’94 
 John P. O’Brien ‘97  
 Brandon J. Sheckels (attd.) 
 Adam R. Keslosky ‘98 
 Frank P. Albi ‘01  
 Christopher L. Sheldon ‘01  
 Candace Smith (attd.) 
 Megan D. Browder ‘02  
 Lauren (Manning) Mikulak ‘02  
 Jeffrey M. Roth ‘02 
 Steven M. Stickle ‘02  
 Lisa M. Cosgrove ‘04  
 Timothy D. Keck ‘04  
 Andrew P. Donovan ‘05 
 Carrie (Jantsch) Leonard ‘05 
 Mark E. Dato ‘06 
 Kenneth C. Jeffries ‘06 
 Stephanie E. Long ‘06  
 Melinda (Curran) MacDougall ‘06 
 Cathryn A. Bishop ‘08 
 Michael Bruns ‘08 
 Alyssa M. Dunn (attd.)  
 Joseph F. Wernke ‘09  
 Bradley A. Evans ‘10 
 Elizabeth (Edwards) Ford ‘10 
 Elizabeth J. Meininger ‘11  
 Nicholas J. Pacitti ‘11  
 Rachel L. Fladung ‘12  
 James “Max” Williams ‘12  
 Joseph Kreyenhagen ‘14  
 Georges Saba ‘14  
 Philip McHugh ‘15 
 Sydney C. Beckmeyer ‘16 
 Connor J. Shaw ‘16  
 Connor McMurry ‘17   
 Catherine Marx ‘18 
 Harrison H. Schertzinger ‘18 
 Howard H. Schertzinger ‘18  
 Aidan Lindy ‘20 
 Jake Simpson ‘20  
 Matthew Warden ‘20  
 Sophia Young ‘20  
 Carter B. Bibler ‘22  
 Parker T. Bricking ‘22  
 Nicholas T. Ciaccio ’22  

48 48 Spring Magazine 2018-19

friendships and relationships that will last a lifetime.” Grateful for the helping hand with their education, many of the Fragge Scholars have devoted themselves to service. Mark Dato ’06 has been a SAT tutor and clinic assistant to increase access to healthcare for low-income people. Nick Pacitti ’11 has been active in the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Georgia as a wish-granting volunteer. Georges Saba ‘14 helps organize aid to the Los Angeles homeless population. Philip McHugh ’15 joined 4Boston Volunteers in which college students spend four hours a week serving the most marginalized through various Boston agencies.  The fact that Marc Fragge died while climbing a mountain isn’t lost on the Fragge Scholars who have benefited from the scholarship created in his name. In a recent note to Marc’s parents, Dr. Ron and Betty Fragge, Lisa Cosgrove ’04 writes:     “Thanks to you and your generosity, I was able to receive an amazing Summit education which paved the way for me to graduate from Princeton with a degree in foreign affairs and to join the Foreign Service. “I have had the chance to picnic in Lawrence of Arabia’s headquarters from the Great Arab Revolt in World War I and have had my campsite raided by free-range camels who had a bold manner and an inexplicable taste for hot dog buns. I have been to a ranch at the end of the world that is so densely populated with penguins, the whole island looks like potholes filled with them. “I have hiked through Mordor and learned that the way down is much harder than the way up. So it is a good thing the hobbits got airlifted off the mountain by eagles in “The Lord of the Rings,” or they would have had to make a fourth movie just to cover the nearly interminable descent. “I have had an amazing life filled with unique experiences, and I wish from the bottom of my heart that Marc could have had them too.”  Sandy Champlin contributed to this report.

Mrs. Betty and Dr. Ronald Fragge, who endowed the Marc Gerard Fragge ’83 Memorial Scholarship to honor their son, are joined by some of their beneficiaries in a 2013 celebration. L to R, students are Joey Kreyenhagen ‘14, Connor Shaw ‘16, Sydney Beckmeyer ‘16, Connor McMurray ‘17, Philip McHugh ‘15 and Georges Saba ‘14.

How Endowed Scholarships Work The Marc Gerard Fragge ‘83 Memorial Scholarship was The Summit’s first named endowed scholarship. Since it was established in 1988, 61 donors were inspired to create their own named scholarships. Today, those scholarships are valued at $16 million and allow us to provide $603,400 each year to support the education of eligible students. •

How do they work? The principal of an endowed fund is permanently invested, and we spend only the earned income.

Why are these funds important? Endowed scholarships give us the financial confidence to commit to long-term support of students. Even in difficult economic times, named endowments provide predictable streams of income. The scholarships attract high-achieving students from across the city, offering The Summit’s educational advantage to families who might not be able to afford tuition at a top-tier, independent school.

Why do donors endow scholarships with us? Donors tell us they believe the best use of their wealth is to invest in children. They know that endowments secure our financial future, and they believe in our mission. Because donors may name their scholarships for whomever they choose, they can leave their mark in a legacy that lasts forever. To create an endowed scholarship at The Summit, contact Chief Philanthropy Executive Jim Jackson at 513-871-4700 ext. 242 or

Summit Magazine 49

Annual Fund for Excellence

MY SUMMIT STORY Sr. Rose Ann Fleming ’50 Named Great Living Cincinnatian

50 50 Spring Magazine 2018-19

By Tanya Bricking Leach   Rose Ann Fleming ’50, a sister of Notre Dame de Namur, has a lot of titles.    She is a nun with the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur (SNDdeN) with two master’s degrees, an MBA, a Ph.D. and a law degree.    She was once a Cincinnati Enquirer “Woman of the Year.” Her “SR. FLEMING” jersey hangs in Xavier University’s Cintas Center, where she is part of the Athletic Hall of Fame for her role as a legendary basketball team academic adviser, a post she has held for more than 30 years. She was once named MVP. She’s been featured in national newspapers and television broadcasts for helping every single Xavier mens’ basketball player graduate.     She’s the former president of Trinity College in Washington, D.C. She’s an author. She’s been photographed at games beside comedian and actor Bill Murray when Murray’s son, Luke, was an assistant coach. Xavier fans called her a “good luck charm” and made her likeness into a commemorative bobblehead doll. She’s a celebrity on the Jesuit university’s campus.    This year, the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber named her a “Great Living Cincinnatian.”    Even though her connection to Xavier is strong, the 86-year-old sister’s roots remain deeply planted in The Summit, where she was a lifer, a teacher and a head of school.    Where It All Began    In her book, “Out of Habit: My Life as Xavier University’s Unlikely Point Guard,” she tells the story of how her parents were distraught after losing their firstborn to what was then called crib death. They prayed for another child and had their prayers answered with twins. 

Twins Rose Ann and Tom Fleming came to The Summit as kindergartners in 1937.  

For a time, she was known as Sister Thomas Mary before she changed her name back to Rose Ann Fleming.   “I have had many different roles at The Summit,” she says in a Summit video interview. “I was a student here for 13 years, and I came back in 1960 as a teacher, as a religious, taught religion and four years of Latin. In 1967, I was named head of the school and stayed on here until 1975 as head of the school.” 

Sister Rose Ann says her mother was delighted to find a school where she and her brother could start together in kindergarten and be separated by third grade to continue their studies individually.   She still recalls the brown-and-peach colored Summit uniform, the sense of belonging she found playing field hockey, softball, volleyball and basketball and the influence the sisters had on her life.  During her years in administration at The Summit,   nuns worked for $5,000 a year. She was a financial Her mother died of cancer when she was 11 and in win for the school. She helped the sixth grade.   increase enrollment by 66   percent, erase the school’s “After Mother died, I didn’t like $350,000 operating deficit, nuns and I didn’t like sitting in establish the four-year coclass,” she says in her book. educational college-prep high “I burned up a lot of energy school and a new primary on the hockey field, running, school.  running, running.”      After that, she says she got She remembers herself as a the job as president of Trinity troublemaker who routinely College because she knew her got thrown out of the library way around a balance sheet.  for talking, and she says she   once led three classmates on a By the early 1980s, she rebellious trip to the roof of The returned to Cincinnati to help Summit’s “thrillingly mysterious care for her dad. She also five-story main building.”  earned her law degree to   work for the poor and joined By the time she was an Xavier’s academic advising upperclassman, her studies and office, where she found her behavior improved, and she niche teaching and helping was elected class president. On athletes succeed on and off Friday nights, she often went the court.  out with her dad for dinner and   a movie downtown.  Favorite Memories      “When I was a senior in high Sister Rose Ann often dresses school,” she recalls in her book, During her time as head of school, Sr. Rose Ann pets in athletic garb and sneakers, “I ruined a perfectly nice meal Antigone, a school pet. along with her gold cross. Her at the male-members-only vision is so good she doesn’t Cincinnati Club by telling him need glasses. She doesn’t eat red meat or drink I wanted to join the religious order after graduation alcohol.  from The Summit.”     She lives in an apartment on Xavier’s campus, where Before she joined, her dad wanted her to get a she still rises at 4 a.m. to meditate, pray, exercise and college education and go to Europe with her aunt. attend Mass at 8 a.m. before going on with her day. So, she studied at the College of Mount St. Joseph She counts “The Good Wife” and “The Bachelor” and then left on a trip abroad with her Aunt Mary.  among her favorite TV shows.      When she returned, she entered the Sisters of Notre “I make no apologies,” she says in her book. “The 51 Dame de Namur convent in 1954. When she was 22. 51 Magazine first one is an authentic legal drama,Summit and well, just

because you have taken a vow of chastity doesn’t mean you don’t want to know who gets the rose.”   When she’s back at The Summit, memories come flooding back.    “I think what I love most about The Summit is the school’s focus on development of the individual student,” she says. “I remember being here and feeling that every single person at The Summit was important. Every teacher knew our name. Many teachers knew our parents.” 


She likes that much of that is still true today. And she likes thinking about old-time traditions.    “One of my favorite memories of The Summit was Distribution Day,” she says. “We used to bring our white dresses, white gloves, black shoes with us to school the morning of distribution. We’d be given time to change and then marched up to St. Cecilia Hall. In St. Cecilia, there would be a gathering of sisters, of our teachers and of parents.”    They would file into chairs and have a concert. Then a faculty member would stand in front of the crowd with a list of names.    “That’s when our hearts started beating quickly,” she says. “Those lists would call us for academic excellence, for good performance, for conduct, for politeness, for religion and other virtues that the sisters thought we should be forming. When your name was called, you stood in your white dress, you bowed and you waited for the list to end. You got in line, walked up the middle aisle and said, after curtseying, ‘Thank you, Sister Superior.’”    Sister Superior would hand out ribbons that had medals attached (that they later returned, so they could be redistributed the next quarter).    “When I went home at night, my parents used to say, ‘Look, we’re not going to talk to you about academic excellence or good performance, but everybody can get a politeness ribbon. Everybody can get a good conduct ribbon.’” Sister Rose Ann recalls. “It was a motivating factor. But I do remember just being scared to death, not of whether or not my name would be called, because I knew I would be on some list. I was concerned about curtseying properly and Spring Magazine 2018-19 then saying, ‘Thank you, Sister Superior.’” 

At 6-foot-9, Xavier University all-star Josh Duncan, now playing basketball professionally in Japan, towers over Sister Rose Ann in this picture from the university’s archive.

Still Humble   After all these years, Sister Rose Ann’s accolades have piled up, but she still takes them in stride.    She jokes in her book that as a basketball academic adviser, sometimes she’s been as welcome as “as a case of athlete’s foot.”    When she recalls how ABC News once described her: “At five-foot-four inches tall, a towering figure of inspiration and determination.” Her response? “Good heavens.”    Today, she still likes simple pleasures, like swimming, fishing or accepting an invitation to the symphony or Playhouse in the Park.    While her days of running balance sheets may be over, she still looks for balance in life and the needs where she feels God is calling her to help. She has no plans to retire from that calling.    This is one in a series of stories called “My Summit Story.” See this story and others via video at www.

L to R, front row: Paula Yarnell-Sundermann ’65, Mia Schreibeis ’14, Dr. Tracy Law ‘85 Ph.D., Clare Gilligan SMS ’07, Conky Greiwe ‘61. Back row: MaLissa (Walter) Geers ‘76, Elli (McSwain) Kaegi ’09, Jerry S. Hilton ‘91, Sherry (Schloemer) Schneider ’81, Gail Rosero ‘82, Cooper Schreibeis ‘12, Lisa Mays ’05, Marina Jemail ‘12, Alice O’Dell ‘85, Arielle (Campbell) Wilson ’06 and Josie (Walter) Funk ‘80. Not pictured: Cary Daniel ’93, Monica (Haas) Desch ‘90, Ericha Franke ’05, Colleen Kane ’08, Caroline (Conners) Lewis ’99 and Brandon Lorentz ‘13.

For Some Alumni, Summit Continues to Be Home Sweet Home By Amy Miller   Part of The Summit Country Day School’s rich tapestry is alumni returning to teach or be part of the staff.   They walked the halls, learned from distinguished faculty, went on to college and then to make their place in the world. Some journey back to continue the legacy of educating leaders of character.    For Conky Greiwe ’61, her return in 1996 to these hallowed halls started with needing a haircut. She walked into her regular salon and bumped into fellow alumna Donna (Hocks) Meakin ‘49 who told her there was a job opening in the school Development Office. She jumped at the chance to be coordinator for the Summit Parents Association (SPA) and annual auction. Since then, Conky has worn many hats for the school. Now, she is Assistant to the Chaplain and SPA Liaison.   Another chance meeting brought MaLissa (Walter) Geers ‘76 and her sister, Josie (Walter) Funk ’80 back. At one of her family member’s graduation parties, MaLissa caught up with Edward Tyrrell, the Head of School at the time. Mr. Tyrrell encouraged MaLissa to apply for the Food Services Director position. Now 38 years later, students, faculty and staff enjoy treats served by these sisters who both were trained at international culinary schools.    First grade teacher Sherry (Schloemer) Schneider ‘81, fourth grade Math and Religion teacher Clare Gilligan SMS ’07, Upper School English teacher Marina Jemail ‘12 and Montessori teacher Mia Schreibeis ‘14 recall The Summit influences that brought them back.  

Now in her 17th year of teaching at the school, Sherry remembers volunteering in the Montessori school as an Upper School student and fond memories of her English teacher, Carole Fultz. “I always hoped I could one day return and teach here,” she says. “I love working with my first grade students at my alma mater.”   Like Sherry, Clare and Marina cannot remember a time when they did not want to be a teacher. The instruction they received as students stoked their passion for teaching. “The caliber of teaching and learning and the experiences I had here as a young child are the reasons I am so thankful to be back and teaching here at The Summit,” Ms. Gilligan says.  And while Mia initially thought her career might be in athletics, an introduction to the teachings of Dr. Maria Montessori rekindled her love of learning and teaching.  Upon graduation from Xavier University, Mia said her choice to continue her career in education could not have been clearer. “Being back in this community as a teacher gives me a great sense of purpose,” she says.  The Immaculate Heart of Mary Chapel also draws alumni back. Maria finds peace and comfort. sitting in the chapel’s hand-carved pews and Alice O’Dell’ 85, Upper School English teacher finds hope. “Sometimes when I am in the Chapel, I try to feel the echoes of generations of feet walking across the circled marble,” says Alice. “I see the daylight as it comes through the stained glass and imagine the connection to the past. Then, I look to the future with so much 53 Summit Magazine 53 hope.” 

Class Notes 90s 10s joined other MIT students at the South Bay House of Correction to help inmates develop a two-storry mural.

Rob Sanders ’91 was re-elected as Commonwealth of Fort Mitchell Attorney for the 16th Judicial Circuit of Kentucky. This will be Rob’s third six-year term as the chief felony prosecutor for all offenses occurring in Kenton County. In addition, Rob continues to serve on the Prosecutors Advisory Council for the Commonwealth of Kentucky after receiving an appointment from Governor Matthew G. Bevin. Aprille Flint-Gerner ’95, of Las Vegas, NV, was married in November 2017. She also wrote an article that was published in the 2017 Journal of Translational Behavior. Aprille works in child welfare and social services. She is a workforce development trainer/ coach and a technical assistance provider for jurisdictions across the west coast. She is the mother of one son who is a freshman at the University of Oregon, who plays football and studies psychology.


Brittany Bransford ’04, of Inglewood, CA, recently graduated from the Chamberlain University College of Nursing with her Master of Science in Nursing Family Nurse Practitioner. 54

Natalie Pearl ’15, of Newport, will lead a delegation of four 11-yearolds from Cincinnati to Bursa, Turkey this summer to represent the US at a global peace camp. Once there, they will join a group of 48 delegates and leaders from 12 countries. The month-long global peace camp experience is through the Cincinnati Chapter of Children’s International Summer Villages, a non-profit organization that fosters excitement and enrichment of cultural diversity through international educational programs. Aaron Chow ’15, of Montgomery, presented a Tedx Talk on the power of possibility at the University of Michigan. See it here. Alex Sigman ’15 graduated from the Boston University Questrom School of Business in December 2018 with a double concentration in Finance and Real Estate. He joined Northeast Bank in Boston as a Commercial Credit Real Estate Analyst in January. Wanyi “Sherry” Xiao ’18, a sophomore at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT),

BIRTHS Erica (Pierce) Leavitt ’12, of South Jordan, UT, and her husband Randon welcomed a baby girl, Charlotte Elizabeth Leavitt, to their family on October 11, 2018.

Mallory (Botsford) Bridle ’07, of San Fransisco, CA, and her husband, Nick, welcomed their son, Landon, on January 20, 2019.

WEDDINGS Graham Vollmer SMS ’02 and Christine McCord were married on Saturday, December 8, 2018, in the Immaculate Heart of Mary Chapel. Jeffrey Rost ’07, of Chicago, and his fiance, Bethany Velcich, will marry on June 29, 2019.

Kyndal (Michel) Marks ’07, of Hingham, MA, was married to Samuel Adams Marks (Boston, MA) on Saturday, June 16, 2018 in the Immaculate Heart of Mary Chapel. The reception followed at the Hall of Mirrors in Downtown Cincinnati. They honeymooned on Grand Cayman and are currently residing in Hingham, MA. They were thrilled to be joined by so many of their friends and family, including many Summit alumni. Christian Bruns ’10, of Loveland, married Emily Schlager in the Immaculate Heart of Mary Chapel on December 1, 2018. Ben Chassagne ’99 and Margot Richey ’03, of Cincinnati, were married in the Immaculate Heart of Mary Chapel on February 8, 2018.

IN MEMORY Robert J. Leonard SBS ‘59, Feb. 13, 2019. Graeme Hopple SBS ‘63, Jan. 25, 2019.

Alumni News

Tiffany (Ashcraft) Russell ’07, of Ludlow married Josh Russell on February 22, 2019.

Please submit news about new degrees, new jobs, marriages, births and other notable passages in your life. Go to submityournews

Save the Date 
 Upper School Graduation  May 19  Immaculate Heart of Mary Chapel    Homecoming  September 20  Williams Field   

Submit your news! 
 Have you recently started a new job, moved, gotten married, or had a baby? Have you had something new and exciting happen in your life? SubmitYourNews 

Athletic Hall of Fame The Athletic Hall of Fame Awards are presented each year in a partnership between the Athletics Department and Alumni Office to recognize the outstanding athletic accomplishments of alumni on the field during their tenure as a student. Submit your nominations today at alumni/awards.  

Alumni: Join the Conversation I’m excited to join The Summit family as the Alumni Engagement and Gifts Officer. I recently came from Mount St. Joseph University, and I am excited for this new chapter. As I am getting acquainted in my position, I am meeting alumni and learning about each person’s “Summit Story.” I hope more of you will tell me about your Summit Story. You will be hearing more about “building a culture of philanthropy.” Building a culture of philanthropy means to develop an intentional, community-integrating and mission-oriented engagement culture. Philanthropy revolves around humanity – caring for, nourishing, developing and enhancing the lives of others to reach their full human potential. The Summit education is based on the hallmarks of the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur and emphasizes character-based leadership. We want to follow in the footsteps of the Sisters by building a holistic, philanthropic and engaging culture with alumni and friends of The Summit whose engagement creates a cohesive and integrated community as they share their time, talent and treasure. As the school works to implement this cultural evolution, we look to our alumni to give back and engage with The Summit. Ways that alumni can be a part of this initiative include: Becoming a class representative, serving on committees and boards, helping with special projects, serving as mentors and coming back to campus as a guest speaker. Another is to be part of the Alumni Advancement Network. This network will be asked to engage fellow alumni both socially and in peer-to-peer fundraising. As we work to deploy this initiative, we want your help to keep Summit strong for years to come. As we approach the end of our 128th year, please join me in welcoming our newest class of alumni – the Class of 2019. Our upcoming graduates will join a community of 4,000+ alumni. We wish them the best of luck in their future endeavors. We hope they will stay involved with The Summit Alumni Association. I look forward to meeting with more alumni and learning about your Summit Story.

Mark Osborne Alumni Engagement and Gifts Officer

55 Summit Magazine 55


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We put the fun in summer! The Summit Country Day School invites you to join students from all over the tri-state area. Programming for ages 3 through high school.

Profile for The Summit Country Day School

The Summit Magazine Spring 2018-19  

The Summit Magazine is a publication of The Summit Country Day School. The Summit has been a school of choice since 1890 for families in Cin...

The Summit Magazine Spring 2018-19  

The Summit Magazine is a publication of The Summit Country Day School. The Summit has been a school of choice since 1890 for families in Cin...

Profile for summitcds