The SLUH journey for freshmen begins well before the first day of school. Opportunities abound for middle school students and their families to learn about the “U. High” and its faith-based program, spirit and community, from SLUH Night and High School Nights to Open House and Inside SLUH Visits, in addition to a variety of summer programs.
What are some of their experiences and perspectives? How are they transitioning? Director of Admissions Ann Murphy asked several freshmen about the start of their SLUH journey. Here’s what they said.
Why did you choose SLUH?
CO: For the academic challenge and the standard (not block) schedule.
DM: When I came to all the SLUH events, I felt included and already felt a part of a supportive community. I knew that I could thrive and succeed here.
ML: I chose SLUH for its reputation as a place of academic challenges, a home of diversity in all forms, and a connected community of brothers. SLUH symbolized for me the passageway to becoming a “man for others.”
NL: I first realized that SLUH was the place for me while attending Upward Bound. I got a feel for how a typical SLUH day functioned, met many of my future classmates and some staff, ate some amazing lunches and became familiar with the school’s layout.
TT: When I first visited for my Inside SLUH tour, I immediately felt welcomed. Everybody was extremely nice and helpful, and Mr. Cruz made my worries about being a public school kid feel unnecessary. SLUH felt like a second home to me from that first experience.
What appealed to you during the admissions process?
CO: Everyone showed a lot of joy at SLUH on my tour and offered help for whoever needed it, especially for freshman as they transitioned to high school.
DM: My mom and I were at SLUH Night, and after one of the speaker presentations I remember thinking, “This is the school for me!”
ML: What pulled me into SLUH was the community I saw during my first campus visit. Classmates were talking and conversing and helping each other with work. Big events like Running of the Bills and Direction Days really helped me bond with classmates and introduced me to the school’s spirit.
NL: During a SLUH visit I noticed that all of the students seemed truly happy to be here. They showed care not only for the school in general, but for their fellow peers. Brotherhood is a very important and much appreciated aspect of SLUH.
TT: SLUH Night grabbed my attention. It was interesting and helped me learn a lot more about what the community is like. It was a real celebration about all that makes SLUH so special.
Tell us about your transition and adapting to life at SLUH.
CO: My senior advisor, Mr. Sciuto and sophomores I’ve gotten to know through football have been really helpful.
DM: Adapting to SLUH has been a little difficult because I’m not used to a lot of people and also have to go to my locker after ever class. But all of my teachers and homeroom senior advisors have been very helpful.
ML: My senior advisor has been a huge help. It’s cool to have someone you can rely on to give you tips to make school easier. It’s also cool hanging out with him and the rest of the guys in homeroom and talking about our day.
NL: My transition to SLUH came pretty smooth thanks to help from my senior advisor, teachers and peers. Coming from a public school where a lot of homework was rare, Upward Bound and the optional summer school classes helped me prepare for an elevated load. The cafeteria also helped ease my transition. Nothing like great food to get you through the day!
TT: I attended a public school, so the transition seemed a little intimidating. Within a few short weeks and through summer school and Direction Days, I’ve learned that while SLUH requires a lot of hard work, it is a place where everyone can succeed, no matter where you come from.
What activities or interests are you looking to explore at SLUH? What classes do you like?
CO: I plan to get involved with Kahoot! Club, Fishing Club, SLUH Sports Network, SLUHTube, and the Tailgate Club. The class I like the best so far is Theology with Mr. Sciuto and how he truly cares about our transition into SLUH and how he can help us succeed.
DM: I look forward to getting involved in theater. I really enjoy my Fine Arts, Theology, and after-school Dance. I like how the freshman Fine Arts program exposes us to theater, choir and visual art. Theology is great because it’s more in depth than what I’ve learned before. And I really like Dance because I think it’s really cool and exciting to learn new things.
ML: I look forward to showing off all that SLUH is with the Photography Club. I’m also excited for participating in the Clavius Project, where Jr. Bills go to elementary schools and teach young students there how to use and program EV3 robots. I also like biology class with Mrs. Wellen. We looked at the water molecule in some small experiments that revealed how certain properties of the molecule correspond to how it behaves in everyday life.
NL: I’m interested in the Ski, Rocket League and Coffee Clubs, as well as racquetball, ultimate frisbee, tennis and lacrosse. I really enjoy Theology with Mr. Lally, Spanish with Señora Alvarado, and English with Mr. Hussung and Mr. Seaton.
TT: At the activities fair I signed up for the Outdoor Adventure and Ski Clubs. My favorite class is Chinese with Mr. Huang. He’s a great teacher and committed to what he does. He’s also very nice, funny and makes learning a complicated language fun.