Jan 01

3 Reasons Holy Family Students Succeed


If you’re numbers driven, it is unquestionable that Holy Family Catholic High School students prove year, after year, after year that they are prepared for college.

What are the indicators? Here are some of the biggies:

  • Average ACT Score (2018): 25.5; Average ACT Score of Top 25% (2018): 31.5; Average ACT Score of Top 10% (2018): 32.61
  • College Attendance (2018): 94% (2-Year College attendance (2017) 1%, Athletic Opportunity (2018) with plans to attend college: 5%)
  • College Completion Rate 6 years out of high school: 84% (National Avg. 53%) Source: National Student Clearinghouse, tracks students for six-years in 98% of all colleges

What the numbers don’t tell is…WHY?

  • WHY do Holy Family students routinely outperform Minnesota students taking the ACT by an average of 5 points over the past 5 years?
  • WHY do Holy Family graduates succeed their first year in college?
  • WHY do Holy Family students graduate from college way above averages from other high schools, according to The National Student Clearinghouse?

“One of the things people always point to is ACT test scores,” says Kathie Brown, Holy Family Catholic High School principal. “Yet test scores are not everything. It’s important to be a thoughtful, reflective, rational thinker, and to take action when you have strengths to be active. You can’t have other people think and do things for you. That is what is important in post-secondary education.”

With that, we set out to put our finger on some of the specifics that answer why Holy Family Catholic High School students succeed in college. We asked five experts, all of whom have worked with Holy Family students and seen them succeed in college and beyond. They are:

  • Kathie Brown, Holy Family Catholic High School Principal
  • Jeanne Weber, Owner, collegeONE, helping students organize and streamline the college application process
  • Melissa Livermore, Holy Family Dean for Academic Support
  • Josh Rutz, Holy Family Counselor

Three Reasons Holy Family Students Succeed

Based on independent interviews with each of these experts committed to helping students achieve success beyond Holy Family, there are a number of reasons why they are successful in college, starting with year one. But these three stand out:

1. Students Leave with Exceptional Writing and Communication Skills. Brown admits this can be a challenge in a society driven by digital devices. But that doesn’t change the need to be articulate, she says. When it comes to excelling in college, students with exceptional writing and verbal skills stand out among peers.

Kathie Brown: “If you can’t communicate well, your ideas will die with you. Our kids are not afraid to express their ideas. They can speak in public and they know how to write when they leave here. They are going to wind up helping their peers in college.”

Jeanne Weber: “There seems to be an emphasis on writing (at Holy Family) in more than just English class. I see a focus on writing in history and many of the other classes. This makes Holy Family kids stronger communicators than what I see from other schools. Even when they sit down with an adult, they are a little more at ease. They listen and have great communication skills.”

Josh Rutz: “One thing we consistently hear is that the workload, particularly the written papers, helps our students succeed in college. Alumni often say when it comes to knowing how to study, knowing the expectations of how to be good students and writing papers in college, they say they are well prepared. Doesn’t matter what college they attend. It seems every single student is saying they are well prepared.”

2. Opportunities Build Leadership Skills. Small numbers seem to deliver big results at Holy Family. With an average student-teacher ratio of 13:1, students can’t fly under the radar at Holy Family. Plus, they participate in extracurricular activities in extremely high numbers. The result is an expectation that Holy Family students lead.

Melissa Livermore: “Almost 100 percent of our students are involved in something, and many in more than one thing. By the time they leave Holy Family, our students have excellent time management skills because they are so involved.”

Josh Rutz: “(Holy Family) Students are not just focusing on school, but every other aspect in their lives—volunteering, work, sports, clubs, activities, and in faith and religious aspects. If anything, they’re too busy. Sometimes, they overwork themselves because they are such great leaders and want to have an impact on all aspects of life. One example: We bring kids on service trips all over the world. Those experiences change our kids in great ways. That’s why they do so well in college and after.”

Jeanne Weber: “When I look at Holy Family kids, the biggest advantage they have is the ability to participate. They have great social interactions, which comes from being in a small school, expecting students to take leadership roles and help out others. Participation helps them with leadership skills. They understand the nature of college, and that they’re going there to learn stuff. They’re just a little more well rounded and make good decisions while in college. They are substantially prepared to take that on.”

3. Holy Family Students Advocate for Themselves and Others. Often overlooked, this skill possibly should be at the top of this list. It shows confidence, drive, leadership and independent learning at a very high level.

Jeanne Weber: “Holy Family students are very confident. They’re not boastful, but they are confident. If they see something that needs to be done, they do it. And they know when they need help. At Holy Family, there is an expectation that you are going to do well. Whatever that well is for you. And that’s a reflection of college.”

Josh Rutz: “Holy Family students are not afraid to ask questions. They become great self-advocates and advocates for others. We push and see growth in that from 9th to 12th grade. No matter where they are at, they are willing to ask for help or help each other out when in need. It provides that feeling of never being alone.”

Kathie Brown: “Holy Family students believe in goals. They know it takes practice and time. They know that, ‘Just because I want, doesn’t mean I can have.’ They keep going after it. I love the persistence and perseverance. When catapulted in new places, they are still OK. They know these are the things I need to do and these are the people I need to find to succeed.”

Holy Family students become critical thinkers.

While those three reasons are the consensus favorites, there are many more reasons Holy Family students succeed in college. Here are a few additional thoughts from our experts on why Holy Family Catholic High School students are ready for a successful college experience, starting with day one.

  • Holy Family Students Think About Thinking. It is almost a lost skill in the digital age, says Brown. “They reflect about what they do and why they do it. They have great thoughts and are not afraid to express ideas.”

Livermore agrees: “We want to make sure students are geared toward learning and understanding. Not just for a grade or to check a box. We want them to learn and understand, and think about thinking.”

  • Students Experience Challenging Course Rigor. “We have high standards and hold all students to them,” Livermore adds. “This gives them confidence to take reasonable risks, such as trying new classes that they wouldn’t have before. It doesn’t scare them off, because they know how to do it, and that they can do it.”
  • Life Skills Are Taught at Holy Family. “Students leave here knowing what they need for a successful future,” Brown says. “They’re able to collaborate with peers; work with professors and faculty; and develop a sense of service and true caring for others. These all translate into aspects they’ll use in their lives and the working world.”
  • “Family Network” = Success. “The family atmosphere here pushes kids at a different level,” Rutz says. “When they have hard times and fall, they know where to turn. They come back here, turn to their families and turn to their experiences here at Holy Family that helped them grow. They have the confidence to tackle life. And life is not always easy.”
  • A Sense of Sacrifice and Direction. “I do think Holy Family kids, because their family is paying for high school, have a sense that people are sacrificing to send them there,” Weber adds. “And, maybe because of that, they have a better sense of what direction they want to head in. They can confidently take that step into college.”

Attend our Fall Open House and find out what’s waiting at Holy Family for your child.  Open house details and registration available HERE.

Jan 01

Geurs receives Schulz Family Scholarship


Commencement ceremonies are wonderful opportunities to share good news with our community. Each year as Holy Family Catholic High School acknowledges individuals for academic success and senior awards, we also celebrate our families’ returns on their investments as we announce the college scholarships dollars offered and accepted. Principal Kathie Brown used these words to announce this year’s totals:

All of our students have great plans for their lives. It is wonderful when colleges and universities acknowledge potential and are able to offer scholarships to help young people meet their goals. I am going to give you two numbers: one is the amount of scholarship money this class of 110 has been offered; the second is the amount these students have chosen to accept. Both numbers are important as they signify confidence in the knowledge, skills, and attitudes of our students and reflect the value of your investment in a Holy Family education.The HFCHS Class of 2019 earned $14,243,184 in college scholarships and accepted approximately $3,824,350.

This year Holy Family is proud to have its first recipient of the $20,000 Richard M. Schulz Family Foundation College Scholarship, Julia Geurs. Julia is an honor student, multi-sport athlete, captain of the state consolation champions HF Girls Basketball, a campus minister, and well-known for her kindness to others, especially the underclassmen who were part of her sports programs. We caught up with Julie to learn more about the scholarship and her high school experience.

HF: How did you hear about the scholarship?
I heard about the scholarship through an announcement that Mr. Rutz made during an Leadership Institute meeting.

HF: Was it a difficult process?
The process was super easy and went smoothly. The application was very straightforward and well explained. Mr. Rutz really helped me along the process by helping me with downloading transcripts, reading my short answer in the application, etc.

HF: What activities were you involved in during high school?

Julia: During high school I was involved in tennis and basketball for all four years. I also was a part of Honors Society. I played softball for one year, and I was apart of equality club senior year.

HF: What classes did you particularly enjoy?
I had a great experience with all of my classes at HF, and they were more enjoyable because of all the understanding teachers. Specifically, I really enjoyed Chemistry, Catholic Social Teaching, Morality, and Clay.

HF: Do you have a major in mind for college? If so, why did you choose it?
Julia: In college, I plan on studying something in the medical field. Right now I am thinking either becoming a nurse or a physicians assistant! I’ve chosen this path because I really want to help others and impact their lives for the better.

HF: Where are you attending college and why did you choose that college?
Julia:  I’m very excited to be attending University of St. Thomas. I chose St. Thomas because it is an excellent school, and I know it will be a great fit for me.

HF: What factors contributed to your academic success?
I was academically successful because of all the support and help I had from different teachers throughout the years at HF. I also attribute it to being organized and determined to do well. I put a lot of work into my school work and studied hard.

HF: Anything else you’d like to share as it pertains to your four years at Holy Family?
Julia: I am so incredibly grateful for my four years at HF because I grew to become a better person through the people I met and the experience I had. I also always felt very welcomed and supported by the staff. It is a great community, and I am extremely happy I made the choice to attend Holy Family.

Holy Family’s summer enrollment season is underway. Parents are discovering what Holy Family has to offer their children. Visit our website or give our admissions team a call at 952-443-1955 to learn more about our school and our Family.

Jan 01

Kathie Brown Announces Retirement at End of 2019-20


In the Spring 2019, Principal Kathleen Brown announced her retirement as the principal of Holy Family Catholic High School at the completion of the 2019-2020 school year.  Upon her retirement, Mrs. Brown will have served our school for since its inception through the 20th anniversary year.

Dear Holy Family Families and Friends,

The 2019-2020 school year will be infused with both subtle and enthusiastic celebrations of Holy Family Catholic High School’s 20th anniversary. The years have flowed quickly and confidently one into another, filled with stories of growth and accomplishment.

It is with joy that I announce my retirement at the end of the 2019-2020 school year. Because we remind ourselves several times a day we are all in the holy presence of God, every one of us is developing the understanding there is more to our individual callings than we are presently living. Consequently, I am looking forward to another year of Holy Family experiences, replete with initiatives to accomplish, teachers to encourage, families to serve, and the gift of daily gratitude for the lives that have touched mine.

I remember moving from Wisconsin to Minnesota in July 1999. I was a city person; my introduction to the school was walking the farmland on which this beautiful building was to be erected. Immediately, I knew starting a Catholic high school wasn’t just a rare opportunity. It was a pristine sketchbook available to many creative and loving minds, hearts, and hands who were excited about transforming lives!

The sketchbook is pretty full now but there are plenty of pages for future artists. Holy Family has developed in many ways in these first nineteen years and it is easy to take for granted how our faculty, coaches, and staff have gone above and beyond to create an environment that is safe, relational, and grounded in Gospel values. I cherish the many traditions that are firmly entrenched in our culture:  Thanksgiving dinner served by teachers and staff, visits from St. Nicholas, Coffee House, and Convocation. These and other special aspects of this sacred space have come from people who realize trusting and caring relationships build strong communities. An effective school is, at its core, a community.

I have great confidence in the processes mentioned below by President Brennan and Board Chair Tom Furlong to seek the next principal of Holy Family Catholic High School. I know great care will be taken to fill this role. In the meantime, prepare to celebrate our 20th anniversary with me. If ever there is an occasion that calls for a party (or several!), this is it!


Living Jesus in our hearts,

Kathie Brown, Principal

A Message from the President and Board Chair

Dear Holy Family Families and Friends,

It is hard to imagine our high school with a different principal. Kathie Brown has been the one and only person to hold this office since Holy Family’s inception 20 years ago. We are indebted to Mrs. Brown for her pioneer spirit and the life of selfless service she has led in the name of Catholic education. In so many ways, we simply would not be here today if it were not for Kathie Brown and her relentless pursuit to see Holy Family succeed and thrive. Much like the way she has viewed every student who has walked through our front doors, Kathie Brown saw the limitless potential of 72 acres of Minnesota farmland and cultivated a once lofty dream into the beautiful reality that is Holy Family Catholic High School today – a place, a home, a family where both students and Savior are known, loved and served. Please join us in our gratitude for the legacy we are honored to inherit and the gift of one final year with someone so instrumental in our trajectory as a school and the beacon of hope we aspire to be. Thank you, Kathie Brown!

As you can imagine, the search for a new principal – one whose sense of vocation is both formed by the Catholic faith and inspired by an understanding of mission — is no small undertaking. Once more we are grateful for the timing of Mrs. Brown’s announcement and the year-long runway it provides to conduct a thorough search for the ideal candidate. It is a task that school leadership views as both a great responsibility and a tremendous privilege knowing full well the impact this position has on school culture, student learning outcomes and day-to-day operational effectiveness.

As such, the Office of School President and the Holy Family Board of Directors will collaboratively engage in a search process for this position with a goal of having new leadership in place for the start of the 2020-2021 school year. To ensure fidelity to our responsibility of providing the very best for Holy Family, a national search will be conducted aimed at sourcing high quality, effective and talented candidates from both near and far.

In the meantime, we again ask that you join us throughout the upcoming year in our gratitude for Mrs. Brown’s faithful service to Holy Family and humbly request the support of your prayers as we navigate the journey of transition that lies before us.

Live Jesus in our hearts…Forever,

Michael Brennan, President                                       Tom Furlong, Board Chair

Jan 01

Carlton and Phillips named Ambassadors of Christ


Holy Family Catholic High School proudly announces Chris Carlton as a 2019 Ambassador of Christ Award co-recipient. Chris is the son of Mary and the late Roy Carlton of Chanhassen. He attended middle school at St. Hubert  Catholic School in Chanhassen. This award is chosen by votes from classmates, faculty, and staff and awarded to a senior who consistently act in a dignified manner, and, by doing so, influence others to strive for goodness and holiness. This year the voting was tied and Chris was the co-recipient with Allie Phillips.

Chris graduated Suma Cum Laude with honors from Holy Family Catholic High School on Wednesday, May 22. He leaves high school with a very full resume of involvement in school activities. He played tennis for four years and was a varsity captain his senior year. He served on the school’s student council for four years, finishing his term as an executive board member and the public relations external officer. He is a four year member of the Honor Society, Health Club, Eco-Freako Club, Lasallian Youth Club, the Knowledge Bowl Team, and Youth in Government, where he was invited to represent the State of Minnesota’s Delegation at the National Judicial Competition. As an underclassman, he also dipped his toes in football, lacrosse, and the Equality Club.  Outside of school he has volunteered with Feed My Starving Children, Furnishare at Love Inc., the American Red Cross, The Langdon, and Summerwood Senior Living Community.

Chris Carlton
Chris walks up to receive his award.

Next fall, Chris will attend the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities where he plans to major in finance and physics. We caught up to Chris after graduation to learn more about his faith journey.

What role does your faith play in your life?

My faith leads my action. I have been absorbing Catholic values my whole life, thanks to my wonderful mother, and I keep them close to my heart so I may affect others positively. Additionally, my faith serves as a valuable foundation to lean on when I struggle.

How has your faith developed/changed in your years at HFCHS?

My faith has blossomed during my high school years, in part, due to my excellent teachers at Holy Family. Theology, Social Studies, and English classes at Holy Family have proven invaluable due to the free exchange of ideas which have strengthened my faith.

Who has influenced you and your faith?  How?

My mother has been my primary faith teacher throughout my life, with great support from my uncle C.J. Schoenwetter and aunt Robin Schoenwetter. By taking me to mass, teaching wisdom from the Bible, and emailing me on contemporary Catholic issues, my family builds my faith life. I could not discuss my faith, however, without my theology teachers Mr. Bosch, Mrs. Bosch, and Mr. Schlepp, all of whom have been instrumental in my faith formation.

What do you find most rewarding about your faith?

The results of manifesting the Catholic faith in the world: mostly, smiles.

 What are your feelings about receiving the Ambassador of Christ Award?

I feel very blessed to have so many people in my life to model my actions after. Even though I have grown up without my father, I have found many role models in the St. Hubert and Holy Family community, many of whom are reading this right now. Parents, teachers, coaches, and friends: thank you!

 Favorite HFCHS memory:

There are too many to choose from, but I’ll try to narrow it down: Haiti, tennis, football, knowledge bowl, each and every learning moment with my teachers, lunch table discussions, convocation, and the time I have cherished with Holy Family’s Class of 2019.

 How did you make the most of your years at HFCHS?

As an underclassman, I did my best to give everything a shot. Then, I focused on what I was passionate about. Open-mindedness has gifted me new joys, new beliefs, and new experiences which I otherwise would not have had the pleasure of knowing.

 Other comments:

Best of luck to all of my friends graduating this year and thank you to the parents, teachers, faculty, and staff who have supported us along the way! Go Fire!

Jan 01

Chaplain Appointed to Holy Family


Archbishop Hebda appoints chaplain to Holy Family

Holy Family Catholic High School is excited to announce Archbishop Hebda’s appointment of Fr. Nels Gjengdahl as Holy Family Catholic High School’s full-time chaplain beginning in the 2019-2020 school year. Fr. Gjengdahl is the current pastor of Nativity of Mary Catholic Church in Bloomington, MN, and has previously served as the school chaplain at St. Thomas Academy in Mendota Heights. This appointment comes in response to a formal request submitted  by Holy Family in March 2018.

Fr. Nels Gjengdahl
Fr. Nels Gjengdahl

Fr. Gjengdahl grew up in North St. Paul, MN, graduating from North St. Paul High School in 1999.  He then attended North Dakota State University to study engineering.  While he has been a lifelong Catholic, it was at college where his faith came alive. After two years of studying engineering, Fr. Gjengdahl entered Cardinal Muench Seminary in Fargo, ND, and graduated with a degree in Philosophy in May of 2003. In the fall, he entered the St. Paul Seminary at the University of St. Thomas. He was ordained a priest in 2007 and was appointed parochial vicar at St. Odilia in Shoreview, MN.

Following St. Odilia, Fr. Gjengdahl was assigned as parochial vicar of St. John Neumann in Eagan as well as part-time chaplain at Saint Thomas Academy in Mendota Heights.  After one year, his chaplain assignment became full-time. This change allowed him to be both a full-time teacher and a sacramental minister for the school.  He taught several subjects including morality, sacraments, Church history, world religions and Catholic social teaching and even coached ultimate frisbee. After a seven-year term as school chaplain, he was assigned as pastor to Nativity of Mary Catholic Church in Bloomington, MN in 2017.

Beginning July 1, Fr. Gjengdahl will transition from his position at Nativity of Mary Catholic Church to providing the Holy Family community with full-time sacramental leadership and spiritual guidance. He will teach within theology department, support ongoing campus ministry efforts, and enhance formation opportunities for our students and their families.

When announcing the move to his congregation, Fr. Gjengdahl shared these thoughts, “I am very grateful to Archbishop Hebda and to Holy Family Catholic High School for this opportunity. I have enjoyed serving as a high school chaplain in the past and look forward to returning to this ministry.  It is a rare opportunity to engage high school students in our Catholic faith on a daily basis, and it is a precious gift that I take seriously. I am excited to share Jesus Christ with the community at Holy Family through the sacraments, and in the entire life of the school.”

When asked what the addition of a full-time chaplain to the Holy Family staff means for the school, President Brennan responded, “As a school, we are blessed to have wonderful relationships with our local priests and are incredibly grateful for their time and leadership over the past 20 years.”  He added, “However, the addition of Fr. Nels to our community, our theology department, and campus ministry programs creates opportunities for daily sacraments and allows us to more deeply live out our Catholic mission. I am grateful for the wisdom, open hearts, and leadership of Archbishop Hebda and Bishop Cozzens in providing a shepherd for our school with an extensive background in secondary Catholic education.”

Jan 01

2019 Academic Recognition Ceremony


Efforts in the Classroom Honored

Holy Family Catholic High School in Victoria held its annual Academic Recognition Ceremony on Thursday, April 25, 2019.  More than 350 students were recognized for academic honors and department awards. Principal Kathie Brown opened the ceremony with the Holy Family prayer and the following message, “The Holy Catholic High School mission statement has two parts: 1. We provide opportunities to grow spiritually, morally, intellectually and physically within a community of faith, and 2. we encourage our students to achieve personal excellence, to use their talents to lead, to serve God, one another and the larger community. The development of the whole person is integral to this school. Finding ways to appreciate our students so they know their efforts matter is challenging. Recognition is valuable. Recognition is magnified when it is combined with appreciation. This is why our being together as a school community matters. Thank you for being here to witness the many ways our students grow in faith, integrity, leadership, and scholarship.”

Watch a complete video of the ceremony at this LINK.

GPA Honors

Fifty-seven students received their cream cord for seven straight semesters with a 3.5 GPA or higher.

Mary Margaret Anderson
Margaret Berg
Brielle Bornhorst
Claire Bradley
Eve Breimhorst
Andrew Bresnan
Brandon Bueltel
Christopher Carlton
Connor Chalmers
Nikolai Charchenko
Grace Conroy
Matthew Deavan
Isabella Dervin
Colin Dosedel
John Enck
Jack Fink
Anna Galioto
Julia Geurs
Sarah Gonsalves
Salomé Greene
Mitchell Hausback
Shannon Hickey
Carly Hilgers
Jacob Konz
Ava Kunze
Thomas Lisko
Calista Lorenz
Claire Melander
Jolee Mesler
Anna Mohling
Grace Murphy
Zyler Niece
Haley Notermann
Brendan O’Connor
Julia Olson
Riley Palattao
Ashley Pass
Quinn Pausche
Taylor Pelzel
Megan Perry
Anita Phillips
Daniel Reddan
Madeline Ricke
Daniel Schneider
Erin Schneider
Emily Sokolis
Reid Stark
Leigh Steiner
Katelyn Stohlmeyer
Anna Taylor
Matthew Thurk
Anna Vakulskas
John Vogel
Andrew Waltz
Evelyn Willenbring
Jacob Zay

Thirty-nine students received their academic pin for five straight semesters with 3.5 GPA or higher.

Jaden Anderson
Ashley Anseth
Adam Beer
Ryan Burke
Jake Caron
Cecily Cronin
Kalie Dahl
Grace Elander
Annabelle Elsner
Abbey Fink
Ellie Frank
Shannon Furlong
Ella Haley
Kevin Haran
Morgan Hausback
Kathryn Jans
Allison Jansen
Brenna Jones
Benjamin Karst
Celia Kreykes
Lucas Lembke
Carson Liebeg
Jared Lorusso
Nicholas Lynch
Samuel McNulty
McKenna Mechtel
Allison O’Brien
Kaili Palattao
Max Pinamonti
Luke Puklich
Margaret Rothstein
Kelly Ryan
Abigail Smith
Jakob Teeter
Nathan Tinucci
David Torborg
Lucy Treat
Holly Trombley
Annie Wilson

Fifty-seven students received their academic letter for three straight semesters with 3.5 GPA or higher.

Allison Agerland
Elle Bernaski
Sam Bradley
Jack Buchholz
Benjamin Charpentier
Bennett Creager
Delaney Devins
Melissa Dwyer
Marie Fahey
Ewan Farrell
Jordan Flink
Etienne Foudray
Joseph Freitas
Andrew Frommelt
Antonio Gaeta
Casey Gess
Olivia Hesse
Ashley Heuer
Nicholas Huson
Alexander Janey
Cassidy Jones
Jacob Kirsch
Haley Klahsen
Dylan Krumpholz
Jakob Lenzmeier
Charles Lindberg
Jaden Lorenz
Gavin Lund
Taylor Millard
Haley Nahlovsky
Aidan O’Donnell
Katherine Olsen
Anthony Olson
Jillian Oncay
Sophie Paul
Alexandria Pellicci
Jordan Pelzel
Isaac Pitner
Caden Pottebaum
Brendan Quinn
Benjamin Reddan
Joseph Richelsen
Caitlin Rock
Luke Roelofs
Reyana Schaffer
Zeke Schneider
Bishop Schugel
Austin Schumacher
Jeremy Schumacher
Daniel Schwieters
Brendan Sieve
Gregory Stoffel
Lauren Taylor
Jacob Warmka
Stephen Webster
Katherine Wise
William Zay

Ninety-two students received their academic certificate for one semester with 3.5 GPA or higher

Julia Anderson
Katherine Anseth
Jack Barth
Thomas Baskfield
Christopher Bauer
Cassie Beddor
Addison Behler
Nicholas Blood
Hanna Bush
Jacob Cameron
Briar Charchenko
Ryley Covington
Edward Diminnie
Derry Donnelly
Isaac Fassil
Charles Ficek
Benjamin Fink
Lucas Frana
Tyler Franck
Elisabeth Gangwer
Luke Geadelmann
Firuza Graham
Elizabeth Guggemos
Aidan Greene
Thomas Guyer
Claire Haley
Grant Hayes
Sophia Heles
Nicholas Hendler
Lucy Hertel
Lauren Hickey
Katherine Johnson
Elizabeth Kamp
Maeve Kelly
Mackenzie King
Nicholas Kroening
Ella Kunze
Natalie Larson
Spencer Lewin
Marcus Lund
Owen Lund
Sophia Mackey
Elizabeth Marschall
Brynn Martin
Graham Miller
Tyler Miller
Madeline Morgan
Daniel Ngô
Molly O’Connor
Sydney Osterdyk
Derek Pass
Sydney Paulsen
Hailey Pavelka
Mackenzie Pavelka
My-Linh Pavelka
Lauren Perry
Pearl Phillips
Garrett Pinoniemi
Logan Radick
Logan Rasmusen
Nicholas Reichert
Samuel Riegert
Ellen Ries
Olivia Sadowski
Kalli Sampson
Matthew Santini
Jack Schafer
Joseph Schmidt
Lucas Schoenecker
Sawyer Schugel
Alex Schrupp
Emma Schuele
Allison Schumacher
Michael Spinner
Cole Spoden
Blake Stedronsky
Luke Terris
Laura Theis
Tanner Theis
Seth Thompson
Rachel Thurk
Ryan Thurk
Joseph Tinucci
Elise Torborg
Andrea Urzua
Jordan Van Eyll
Grace Vogel
Cela Watkins
Nellie Wicka
Paige Wicka
Matthew Wideman
Benjamin Wilson

Eighty students received their academic card for one semester a 3.0-3.446 GPA.

Spencer Adelmann
Patrick Barrett
Megan Beach
Brooke Beno
Sebastian Bojorquez-Rojas
Daniel Borbonio
Jacob Bornhoft
Nicole Bowlin
Ryan Bowlin
Nicholas Charpentier
Matthew Chromy
Regan Cizek
Austin Clifford
Ethan Conti
Alexa Cuadros
Joseph Dahlin
Eli Devins
Chelsea Diahn
Patrick Dowling
Ethan Drake
Dylan Ehlers
Juliana Escalante
Trey Fechko
David Frahm
Jack Garry
Parker Gnos
Humberto Gomez
Mario Gomez
Dylan Halliwill
Aaron Hesse
Joseph Heuer
Bailey Huber
Tatum Hussey
Keyrie Jimenez-Flores
Rory Johnson
Lucas Jorgenson
Tollef Kohrman
Nicholas Kotval
Evelyn Lacy
Grant Limke
Sydney Linn
Ethan Livermore
Sadie Long
Zachary Lorusso
Sophia Markstrom
Grace McGlynn
Mackenzie McMillan
Evelyn Miller
Alex Molina
Ruby Moya
Patrick Mulheran
Thomas Mulheran
Blake Muschewske
Colin Nawrocki
Luke O’Brien
Aidan Olson
Daniel Parker
Jacob Parker
Drew Pearson
Dominic Phillips
Mitchell Prosser
Mark Rahn
Noel Rahn
Mark Roane
Abigail Roper
Dylan Schenk
Jordyn Schenk
Sean Silva
Noah Seck
Ella Stapelton
Nicholas Strand
Jacob Taylor
Emmett Thuli
Josue Vivanco
Molly Weber
Josie Wicka
Marcus Wieneke
Cole Wilson
Emily Zhou

Department Awards

The following students received department awards:

Activities Director Nick Tibesar announced prefaced this year’s senior athlete awards with the message: “Since 2002 – HF has recognized the athletic accomplishments of ONE senior MALE and ONE senior FEMALE each year. These individuals were nominated for their excellence on the playing field, in the classroom, along with their character and leadership. We were fortunate to have a deep pool of talented young men and women, who all matched and exceeded these parameters. This year’s senior class has contributed to conference, section, and state championships — along with countless individual honors!”

Senior Athletes of the Year Leigh Steiner and Sawyer Schugel

Excellence in English: Chris Carlton, Annie Wilson, Mimi Anderson, Connor Chalmers

Spirit of English: Katherine Olsen and Allie Philips

Fine Arts

Recognizes individual students who given us the privilege to experience their creative abilities and talents.

Visual Arts: Shelagh Gamble, Instructor

Senior Spotlight
AudreyBrooks and Austin Schumacher

Junior Spotlight
Madeline Doshan and Tollef Kohrman

Sophomore Spotlight
Grace McGlynn and Reyanna Schaffer

Freshman Spotlight
Elizabeth Guggemos and Joseph Dahlin


Rising Star: Kalli Sampson

Photographic Eye Award: Collin Nawrocki

Vocal Music: Annelise Brown, Director of Vocal

Letter: Eve Breimhorst, Kalie Dahl,  Allie Phillips, and Emily Sokolis

Instrumental Music: Mrs. Laura Boillat, Director of Bands

Letter: Andrew Bresnan, Sawyer Schugel, Carson Liebeg, Sam Pellicci, Spencer Adelmann, Daniel Borbonio, Joseph Freitas, David Frahm, Collin Nawrocki, Bishop Schugel, Graham Miller, Molly Weber, Katherine Wise


Math League Letters: Captains Collin Dosedel, Jacob Konz, and Carly Hilgers
Grace Conroy, Derry Donnelly, Jospeh Freitas, Anna Galioto, Mitchell Hausbach, Kathryn Jans, Callista Lorenz, Jeremy Schumacher, Leigh Steiner, Abby Smith, Greg Stoffel, Lauren Taylor, Andrew Waltz, Acknowledgement Abby Saylor, Ashley Pass, and Haley Notermann

AMC High Score – Joseph Freitas and Riley Palattao


Presidential Volunteer Service Award Bronze (100-174 cumulative hours): Kalie Dahl and Abby Saylor
Presidential Volunteer Service Award Gold (over 250 cumulative hours): Collin Dosedel, Collin Nawrocki, Riley Palattao, Megan Roth, and  Emily Sokolis


This award given by the science department is meant to encourage, recognize, and honor those students who have taken the initiative to explore science beyond the minimum requirements of a Holy Family Student.Claire Bradley, Connor Chalmers, Ben Charpenteier, Colin Dosedel, Sarah Gonsalves, Mitchell Hausback, Jacob Konz, Thomas Lisko, Calista Lorenz, Elizabeth Marschall, Julia Olson, Riley Palattao, Abby Saylor, Andrew Waltz

Science Club “Primary Investigator”  AwardThis was the first year for science club at Holy Family Catholic High School.  Three students demonstrated creativity, initiative, enthusiasm for science, and consistent attendance throughout the year as they established the science club.  Since the term “ primary investigator”  refers to a scientist who creates a research plan and leads the study, the “primary investigator”  award is given toAndrew Bresnan, David Frahm, Tommy Lisko

Social Studies:

Mr. Maus
AP Government: Lauren Taylor and Gavin Lund
World History :Emma Schuele and Edward Diminnie

Mrs. Halvorson
American Government – Julia Olson Haley Nahlovsky
American History – Adam Beer Jaden Anderson
Economics and Personal Finance- Leigh Steiner and Danny Schweiters
American Legal Studies-John Vogel

Mrs. Pottebaum
Mock Trial: Derry Donnelly, Pearl Phillips, (captain) Kelly Ryan, Thomas Lisko, Emily Zhou, Colin Dosedel, Maggie Berg, Logan Rasmussen, (captain) Shannon Hickey, Luke Terris, Ellen Reis, Chelsea Diohan, Madeline Ricke, Luke Geadelman, Holly Trembley, Jeremy Schumacher, Graham Miller, Allison Agerland, Anna Taylor, Sarah Gonsalves, Lauren Taylor, Salome Greene

Model Assembly Letter: Natalie Larson, Katie Anseth, Zach Bornhoft, Rory Johnson, Luke Terris, Ava Kunze
AP US History: Mitchell Prosser, Lauren Hickey
AP Human Geography: Ava Kunze
AP Government: Sawyer SchugelPsychology: Carly Hilgers
American Spirit Award and Flag: Kelly Ryan


9th Grade: Ruby Moya and Hailey Pavelka

10th Grade: Marie Fahey, Cassie Jones and Graham Miller

11th Grade: Nick Hendler, Abby Smith, Luke Terris, Holly Trembley

12th Grade: Christopher Carlton, Allie Phillips, Kelly Ryan, Abby Saylor, Emily Sokolis

World Language:

AP Italian: Anna Galioto
Latin: John Vogel
Spanish: Claire Bradley
Spanish: AP Spanish- Eve Breimhorst; Shannon Hickey

Watch a video of the ceremony HERE

Holy Family Honor Society

Holy Family Honor Society held their banquet on Sunday, April 14. Alumna Shruti Iyer ’10 was the guest speaker and Emily Sokolis ’19 was the selected student speaker.

Thirty-five students were inducted into the Honor Society.
Allison Agerland, Jaden Anderson, Samuel Bradley, Andrew Bresnan, Melissa Dwyer, Ewan Farrell, Etienne Foudray, Andrew Frommelt, Olivia Hesse, Nicholas Huson, Cassidy Jones, Benjamin Karst, Jacob Kirsch, Haley Klahsen, Jakob Lenzmeier, Charles Lindberg, Gavin Lund, Samuel McNulty, Haley Nahlovsky, Aidan O’Donnell, Brendan Quinn, Benjamin Reddan, Joseph Richelsen, Margaret Rothstein, Abby Saylor, Reyana Schaffer, Bishop Schugel, Jeremy Schumacher, Brendan Sieve, Gregory Stoffel, Lauren Taylor, Jakob Teeter, Jacob Warmka, Katherine Wise, and William Zay

Twenty-six students were honored for one-year membership.
Ashley Anseth, Ryan Burke, Kalie Dahl, Grace Elander, Annabelle Elsner, Abbey Fink, Shannon Furlong, Julia Geurs, Ella Haley, Morgan Hausback, Kathryn Jans, Allison Jansen, Brenna Jones, Celia Kreykes, Lucas Lembke, Carson Liebeg, Nicholas Lynch, McKenna Mechtel, Kaili Palattao, Madeline Ricke, Erin Schneider, Abigail Smith, Nathan Tinucci, Lucy Treat, John Vogel, and Andrew Waltz

Thirty-six were honored for two year membership.Mary Margaret Anderson, Margaret Berg, Brielle Bornhorst, Claire Bradley, Brandon Bueltel, Christopher Carlton, Nikolai Charchenko, Matthew Deavan, Colin Dosedel, John Enck, Anna Galioto, Sarah Gonsalves, Salomé Greene, Mitchell Hausback, Shannon Hickey, Carly Hilgers, Jacob Konz, Ava Kunze, Claire Melander, Anna Mohling, Grace Murphy, Haley Notermann, Brendan O’Connor, Riley Palattao, Ashley Pass, Megan Perry, Anita Phillips, Daniel Reddan, Emily Sokolis, Reid Stark, Leigh Steiner, Katelyn Stohlmeyer, Anna Taylor, Anna Vakulskas, Evelyn Willenbring, Jacob Zay

Learn more about Honor Society Requirements at this LINK

Jan 01

Relic Visits Holy Family


,,Holy Family Catholic High School Receives Saint Relic

In recognition of the 300th anniversary of the April 7 Good Friday passing of St. John Baptist de La Salle, a relic of the saint is traveling for display and veneration throughout the Christian Brothers Midwest District. St. John Baptist de La Salle is a patron saint of teachers and all those who work in education. 

The reliquary will be on display through Friday, April 26.

Holy Family Catholic High School is the first high school in Minnesota to receive the transfer of the relic for display.  Holy Family President Mike Brennan, Principal Kathie Brown, Lasallian animator Doug Bosch, and Brendan O’Connor received the relic from Brother Dennis Galvin before the start of the Founder’s Week MassIt will remain on display from the April 23 Mass through Friday, April 26, before transferring to Totino-Grace High School in Fridley. 

According to Catholic teachings, relics of saints may be displayed for veneration but are not worshipped. They are holy objects with association to  saints who now live in God’s presence. 

The Holy Family community is welcome to view or venerate the relic during school hours (7:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.) The relic will be displayed a cabinet in the school foyer and in the school chapel for the Friday, April 26, Day of Giving 24-hour Prayer Vigil.

Click HERE to watch the transfer ceremony.

Dr. McInerny comments on relics and their veneration:

Holy Family theology instructor, Dr. Brendan McInerny, prepared the following information on relics and the Catholic Church:

The veneration of relics appears to coincide with the broader veneration of the saints. Already in the first ‘post-apostolic’ (after the deaths of the apostles) generation of Christians, we find accounts of Christians collecting the relics of the martyrs. There appears to be some scriptural support for this in miracles occurring by touching the garments of, e.g., Peter or Jesus, and the reverence being given to the remains of prophets and patriarchs within the book of Genesis (all the more striking since the authors of Genesis did not appear to have a belief in the idea of the resurrection of the dead). Between roughly 200 and 1500, relics were a constant, universal, and central feature of Christianity.

Only where Protestant Christianity became dominant do we see a disappearance of relics. As those who have been in historically Catholic or Orthodox countries (France, Italy, Spain, Greece) might attest, relics are still very much in existence and sometimes very much on display. It is widely reported that a relic of the Crown of Thorns was saved from the 2019 fire at Notre-Dame. Up to the 1960s, virtually all Catholic churches had a relic in the altar. They are still around us, though we often don’t notice or know what to do with them.

What are we to make of all of this?

First, we can understand relics as a special instance of what is commonly referred to as “the sacramental imagination” or “sacramental worldview.” “The sacramental imagination” refers to the Catholics belief that God’s grace or presence works through tangible, physical things. Encompassing the seven ‘chief” sacraments (baptism, chrismation/confirmation, Eucharist, penance, anointing of the sick, holy orders, and matrimony) as well as the innumerable ‘lesser’ “sacramentals” (the altar, incense, candles, images/icons, song, funerals, etc), the sacramental imagination in fact stretches to embrace all of creation. Everything can potentially be an avenue of God’s presence and grace because God is creator of everything, and called all of it good. Furthermore, God “assumed” this tangible, physical, created order “directly” (though mysteriously) in the person of Jesus of Nazareth. The Word became flesh and through his flesh Jesus is connected to the whole web of relationships that make up the material universe.

One crucial purpose of this sacramental economy of grace is to transform men and women in holiness. God does not simply work through created things as passive instruments. God also works together with free human beings, who, in ordinary and extraordinary ways, become witnesses of God’s love. These men and women imitators of Christ, temples of the Holy Spirit, or simple “saints,” become vessels of grace themselves. Sometimes this grace is shown in miracles during a saint’s life, sometimes not.

Second, just as the immaterial and material are bound up together in the sacramental imagination, so too does Catholic theology maintain that the body and soul of human beings are distinct but not truly separate. This lack of separation is what undergirds the practices of fasting and abstinence. What happens in the body affects the soul. Therefore, from a Catholic point of view, a ‘complete’ human being is an embodied soul or an ensouled body and even after death the two realities remain, somehow linked. In our lives we might see something of this in the care with which we treat the bodies of the dead or the way in which we treasure mementos or heirlooms.

Somehow, we intuitively sense that a corpse is still our loved on in some manner or that a treasured object is still theirs. From a theological viewpoint, this common intuition reflects the truth in reference to the resurrection of the dead or the resurrection of the body. Being body/souls, we are incomplete in death and await a re-union of body and soul. Just as Christ rises bodily from the dead, so too will we. What exactly that resurrection body is or how it might relate to the assemblage of molecules that make up our bodies on this side of death and which pass into other bodies as a result of decomposition remains a mystery, but Catholics hold the conviction that the body, fully united with the spirit, will have a share in paradise.

In the instances of holy men and women – those beatified and canonized – we imagine the ‘link’ between body and soul in this life and after death as somehow ‘stronger’.  To put it in a spatial metaphor: because the saint is ‘closer’ to Christ, he or she is ‘closer’ to the state of paradise in which there is no discontinuity between body and soul. As a result, the saint is both present and (potentially) active in and through his or her relics. Perhaps, it is better to say through the relic, the believer is made present to the saint. It is for that reason that people went to such lengths to go on pilgrimage to Paris, Canterbury, Rome, Constantinople, and Jerusalem: to be in the company of saints in the presence of God.



Jan 01

The Lasting Power of Holy Family’s Campus Ministry


Behind the Scenes: The Lasting Power of Holy Family’s Campus Ministry

The squishy black couches were the same. The motivational posters stuck to the white cinder-block walls were the same, as was the whiteboard covered with colorful scrawls. Mrs. Bosch was there, of course, with her trusty clipboard and pencil, the only tools she needs to command her cohort of Holy Family’s campus ministers.

But as soon as I entered the room, my eyes were drawn to the back wall. A few inches above some orange flames framing the word “FIRE” was a signature—my own, from 2014, the year I graduated from Holy Family. My black Sharpie autograph was surrounded by my classmates’ black Sharpie autographs, which were surrounded by those of our predecessors and successors. Almost a decade of campus ministers are represented on that wall.

I walked over to one of the squishy black couches and handed my sister a coffee. Anna is a senior at Holy Family now, and I am a nice older sister. Also I needed some caffeine in my veins to stay awake for a B Period class.

I perched near another squishy black couch and opened my little reporting notebook. I’m working as a journalist nowadays, which I’m guessing is the reason my alma mater asked me to write about its Campus Ministry program.

In some ways, it is hard to describe what exactly Campus Ministry is. The program is something so special, so unique to Holy Family. But I will try my best.

Shaping the Spiritual Foundation

The goal of Campus Ministry, as Assistant Principal John Dols describes it, is to train Holy Family students to minister to other students.

The school first offered Campus Ministry as a class in 2007, an option for students’ senior-year theology requirement. That inaugural group of campus ministers took charge of planning and leading daily convocations, class retreats and community service projects—work previously handled, for the most part, by faculty.

In the years since, Campus Ministry transformed into an institution at Holy Family, a privilege for those in their final year at the school. Seniors who choose to sign up for the class are tasked with providing opportunities for the school community to grow in faith, service and community.

Campus Ministry is responsible for the Lenten spiritual programming including the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

“It certainly is the vehicle where we have students who shape the spiritual formation of Holy Family,” Campus Ministry instructor Lynnae Bosch said. She and Dols have provided guidance to campus ministers over the years, but the bulk of the decisions are made by students.

“As a school, we have said we are so proud of our kids and we are so confident that we have, for three years, trained them so that we’re comfortable with them going out, giving messages, teaching kids,” Dols said.

Campus ministers are in charge of some of the school’s biggest events, like the highly anticipated Thanksgiving and Christmas Convos debuted each year before holiday breaks. They’re also in charge of the small behind-the-scenes details—the type of work, Bosch said, that can be overlooked.

The 17- and 18-year-old campus ministers coordinate all-school Masses, and they design reconciliation services during Advent and Lent. They organize spiritual retreats at local elementary schools, just as they do for their Holy Family peers—students have an all-class retreat each of their four years at the school.

Campus Ministry students prepared rocks for the 6th grade retreat at St. Hubert Catholic School in Chanhassen.

The campus ministers are the ones who set up the giant projection screen for assemblies and run to Costco to pick up enough snacks to feed more than 100 hungry high-school students. Each day, they stand before the entire school community and lead them in prayer.

“For the younger students, to see someone your age do that every day, I think there’s power in that,” Bosch said.

The Cornerstone of Community

The bell rang, announcing an end to B Period, and I join the herds of students parading to the gym—a walk down memory lane.

As some 500 students clamber to their spots on the bleachers, I watch the group of campus ministers leading the day’s convocation. They scramble to check in on all the last-minute details, exchanging whispers and a few nods, before one grabs the mic and says the magic words.

“Let us remember we are in the holy presence of God.”

I’ve never tried it, but I wonder if you said those words someplace—a bar, perhaps, or a crowded restaurant—full of Holy Family alumni, would a hush fall over the room? Would we remember the days we spent in those bleachers, when those words were uttered and all the chatter—the gossip, the gabbing, the giggles—ceased?

The convocation on the day of my visit was Holy Family Feud, a knockoff of the popular game show created by surveys campus ministers collected. On the gym floor, senior Ryan Bowlin quizzed competing students and faculty on the preferences of Holy Family students — their favorite uniform tops, their favorite sporting events, their favorite cafeteria foods.

It was clever. It was funny. The team of teachers crushed the team of students, though, to be fair, they had years of institutional knowledge on their side.

Then we prayed. A campus minister grabbed the microphone and thanked God for creating our family with a purpose. “We know that you have plans for us individually and for our family as a whole,” she prayed. “Help us to have an appreciation for each other’s personalities, gifts and even our weaknesses.”

We clasped hands and said the Our Father. We turned to the American flag and said the Pledge of Allegiance. After announcements, the chatter resumed as students and teachers began to make their way to the next class. I stayed for a moment at the top of the bleachers.

It is impressive, I thought, that a group of 17- and 18-year-olds is in charge of everything that just happened. A straggling group of campus ministers was still taking down the giant projection screen.

Leaving her signature on the wall, just like the alumni before her did.

In preparation for my visit, Mrs. Bosch asked the current campus ministers to write down what they learned from the class and why they valued it. Many said it gave them great public

speaking experience or helped them practice organizational skills while planning large events. Some spoke of creativity, of cooperation, of faith, of leadership.

I thought back to my own time as a campus minister. Certainly, I learned those skills—skills that would prove to help me immensely in future leadership roles I took on in my college dorm and campus newspaper. But like I said, it’s hard to articulate exactly why I think Campus Ministry is so valuable to the Holy Family community. Because it does so much more.

“It is a cornerstone of Holy Family culture,” one student wrote.

“I personally think,” another wrote, “it’s the center of the community aspect that makes HF so great.”

I went back to the Campus Ministry classroom to grab my bag and looked at the back wall, the wall my sister and her classmates will sign before they head off to college. This year’s campus ministers will soon pass on the torch to the next group. And the Holy Family tradition of faith, service and community will live on.


Katie Galioto (’14) graduated from the University of Notre Dame in May 2018. Since then, she has reported for the Star Tribune and the Chicago Tribune as an intern on both papers’ metro desks. She currently works as a breaking news intern for POLITICO in Washington, D.C. You can follow her work on twitter @katiegalioto.

Jan 01

Feed the Fire Within: Shruti Iyer’s Story


Alumna Shruti Iyer ’10 reflects on the continuing impact of a Holy Family education

“A person who never made a mistake, never tried anything new” -Albert Einstein

Einstein emphasizes that if we want to immerse ourselves in new experiences then we should never be afraid of failure. It took me several challenging and rewarding years to finally appreciate his words. Chasing my career ambitions at Medtronic, struggling as an underdog in grad school, and sculpting my identity in undergrad have often pushed me to my limits. Throughout these challenges, I have persisted thanks to the strong values of faith, scholarship, integrity, and leadership that I learned at Holy Family. Retrospectively, my experiences at Holy Family have undoubtedly given me the courage to make mistakes and the resilience to keep trying new experiences.
—Shruti Iyer ’10

In high school, I remember my dream career changing weekly. One week it was biology because of Mrs. McAvoy’s passion for protein synthesis; a week later, it was computer science because of Mr. Kannel’s programming assignments; just a week after, it was writing because of Mr. Unverzagt’s challenging writing prompts. Having numerous interests and being unable to pick just one was extremely stressful. This was heightened when my peers would easily choose one passion as their career paths. At that point, I learned to have faith. My parents and teachers reminded me to have faith in my natural instincts. They encouraged me to grow all of my diversified interests. Little did I know that a career existed out there which would merge all of my passions together.

In undergrad, I pursued a Bachelor’s degree in Biomedical Engineering, with a minor in Computer Science, at the University of Minnesota. At the time, I chose this major because it fused my interests in Biology and Computer Science. My engineering classes were extremely challenging and some days I would question if I chose the right path. I began to understand that learning and scholarship do not imply merely hitting the books.  I developed a thirst to constantly learn both inside and outside of the classroom. I even served as the President of the Indian Student Association and engaged in celebrating my cultural roots. By graduation, college had opened my eyes to the value of learning.

After undergrad, I joined Medtronic Neuromodulation as a Software Engineer in Research and Development (R&D). In my first project, I helped develop a cutting-edge Android application to provide patients with Spinal Cord Stimulation therapy. This app helped clinicians serve patients suffering from chronic pain. For the first time, my assignments were no longer from a textbook and my work directly improved the lives of real-world patients. This was extremely intimidating and I often suffered from imposter syndrome. This entails feeling out of place and feeling as though you do not deserve the opportunities you receive. I had to remember the importance of integrity. I had to trust in my abilities and relentlessly seek out new opportunities to contribute. Over time, I flourished into a budding medical device engineer.

Within a year, my aspiration to serve patients in a greater capacity pushed me to pursue a Master of Science in Medical Device Innovation (MDI) at the University of Minnesota. My masters fed directly into my career and gave me a taste of entrepreneurship in the Medical Device space. Working at Medtronic full-time and studying simultaneously was immensely challenging. Gradually, I began doing my part to lead both grad school projects and work deliverables. At this point, I understood that it’s never too early to take on leadership. Being a leader is not defined by a title. I learned that everyone in a team has the ability and responsibility to lead by example.

After graduating from MDI, I received two new opportunities at Medtronic: I became a Systems Engineer in the Restorative Therapies Group, and was chosen to co-chair Asian Impact at Medtronic – an employee resource group known as AIM-TC. As a Systems Engineer in R&D, I currently drive the design of a Therapy Drug Delivery system. In AIM-TC, I develop strategy to provide affordable medical devices in Emerging Markets across Asia. It is immensely fulfilling to know that I am doing my small part in making a huge difference in the lives of patients all around the world.

My life has been an extraordinary journey thus far. My parents are a source of inspiration for everything that I have pursued. They arrived as immigrants from Pune, India, in 1994 and persisted against all odds to achieve their American Dream. It is their undying faith, unwavering integrity, fearless leadership, and passion for learning and scholarship that continues to push me to bravely chase my dreams. They bestowed upon me a life changing education at Holy Family.

I still meet up with friends from Holy Family; Sarah Singsank ’10 can vouch that we still recite lines from our 2010 Math Rap. My friends inspire me to jump into new endeavors. I recently started doing Stand Up Comedy and am the drummer of a band called Tomorrow’s Leftovers.

I try to live out Einstein’s ideology about never letting failure hinder me from trying new experiences. It doesn’t take an Einstein to realize that mistakes are a part of life. Never be afraid of trying something new. Feed the FIRE within.

Jan 01

Scholarship Opportunities for Incoming Holy Family Students


Middle School Matters! Let’s talk scholarships.

Let’s talk SCHOLARSHIPS, and the huge opportunity they provide families with students attending Holy Family Catholic High School.

Each year Holy Family awards a number of scholarships and grants to incoming students. These awards ease tuition costs, while also rewarding students for their past success and future potential.

“We’ve put our money where our mouth is with this program,” says Scott Breimhorst Executive Director of Admissions. “We have dedicated significant financial resources to these scholarships to ensure a broad application of funds is possible.”

For those who like hard numbers, consider these facts:

  • 9X. Holy Family scholarship and grant offerings are trending up with many added during the last three school years. This year, students can apply for nine different scholarships or grants. Most are awarded to multiple students each year.
  • 3 Categories. 1) Merit Scholarships are earned by students that have already achieved and excelled in middle school, and show potential for future success. 2) Qualifying Scholarships are for students meeting specific criteria, such as coming from one particular middle school.  3) Grants are awarded to families meeting qualifying criteria.
  • 100% Eligibility.  Every family enrolling their first student to Holy Family automatically qualifies for a $1,000 grant—the First In Family grant. Just check the box accordingly on the Scholarship Application to receive this multi-year grant.
  • Compounding Interest. Many scholarships and grants are awarded to multiple students each year. Also, most scholarships are renewable annually for four years, and students can apply for up two different merit scholarships.
  • Lots of Zeros. Annual awards range from $500-$3,000. Multiply by four years, and these scholarships grow to several thousands of dollars in tuition savings!

“It is absolutely in every incoming ninth grader’s best interest to apply,” Breimhorst adds. “ With the variety of areas covered in our merit scholarship program, we have the ability to reach many families. Why not give it a shot?”

Before breaking down each scholarship opportunity available to incoming students, here are some essential yet critical things to know:

  • Holy Family Enrollment. Before applying for scholarships or grants, students complete the Application for EnrollmentIncoming ninth grade students must also take the High School Placement Test given in January.
  • Categories. Scholarships are available for academic achievement, leadership, volunteerism, and involvement in extracurricular activities except for athletics. 
  • February 5 is the priority deadline for applications. Don’t wait until last minute. Several scholarships require an essay or plan. These take thought and polishing. Students meeting the February 5 deadline receive first consideration.  Applications received after that date may be eligible if funds are still available.
  • Financial Assistance Applications. For most scholarships and grants, the TADS application for financial assistance is not required. But some do require this application. If so, be sure to complete by February 5.

Now that the official stuff is out of the way, here’s a look at all Holy Family scholarship and grant opportunities. Any way you add it up, these are a win for Holy Family students and families.


President’s Award for Academic Achievement

Award: $500-$1,500 per year

Who Should Apply: Students with proven academic success in middle school or other high schools.

Who’s Eligible: Incoming 9th-grade students and transfer students

You’ll want to know:

Fine Arts Scholarship

Award: $500-$1,500 per year

Who Should Apply: Students who have participated and excelled in art, music or theater.

Who’s Eligible: Incoming 9th-grade students and transfer students

You’ll want to know:

  • Scholarship requires a Merit Scholarship Application
  • Criteria for selection include a student’s past involvement and experience in arts programs, accomplishments in arts programs, and a written statement of “passion for the arts outside of school.”
  • Annually renews if a student continues to participate in Holy Family fine arts programs. 

Founders’ Scholarship for Leaders

Award: $500-$1,500 per year

Who Should Apply: Students whose leadership has positively impacted the lives of fellow students, their community, and the world.

Who’s Eligible: Incoming 9th-grade students and transfer students

You’ll want to know:

St. John Baptist De La Salle Award

Award: $500-$1,500 per year

Who Should Apply: Students dedicated to service and have made an impact on their school, local community, or church.

Who’s Eligible: Incoming 9th-grade students and transfer students

You’ll want to know:


First in Family Grant

Award: $1,000

Who Should Apply: Every family enrolling their first student to Holy Family.

Who’s Eligible: Incoming 9th-grade families and transfer students.

You’ll want to know:

  • Automatic qualification. Families must select this option on Application for Enrollment.
  • Enrollment applications must be received by February 5. Late applications may be considered if funds are available
  • Annually renews.

Catholic Parish and School Staff Discount

Holy Family Catholic High School is excited to provide a tuition discount program for children of Catholic parish and Pre-K-8 school staff members.

Award:  $4,600 per year

Who Should Apply: Staff Members of Catholic Parishes and Schools

Who’s Eligible: Staff Members of Catholic Parishes and Schools

You’ll want to know:

  • Check the box on the scholarship application.
  • Also eligible for other scholarship or tuition assistance awards


NEW! Ignite the Fire Scholarship

Award: $1,000-$2,500 per year

Who Should Apply: Students from St. Hubert School who were active in SHS programs and activities, plus maintained a 3.5 GPA while attending middle school.

Who’s Eligible: St. Hubert School incoming 9th-grade students attending Holy Family.

You’ll want to know:

  • Scholarship requires a separate application.
  • Students must articulate a plan for remaining active in Holy Family extracurricular activities.
  • Annually renews if a student maintains a 3.25 GPA at Holy Family. 

Click HERE if you are a St. Hubert family with an application on file and would like to apply for the Ignite the Fire Scholarship.

Flaherty Family Foundation

Award: Determined on a case-by-case basis

Who Should Apply: Highly motivated students with high potential and significant economic needs determined by TADS; positive contributor to the community.

Who’s Eligible: Students with a 3.5 middle school GPA meeting needs determined by TADS.

You’ll want to know:

  • Families must complete a TADS application. Those meeting criteria will be invited to complete a separate scholarship application.
  • Annually renews by foundation if similar standards are met each year.

Hildebrandt Family Scholarship

Award: $1,500-$3,000 per year

Who Should Apply: Incoming 9th-grade students attending public middle schools.

Who’s Eligible: Students attending public middle schools who complete separate scholarship application.

You’ll want to know:

  • Scholarship requires a separate application.
  • Annually renews for students maintaining good academic standing.

Click HERE if you are an incoming student from a public school and would like to apply for the Hildebrandt Family Scholarship.

Radick Family Scholarship

Award: Up to $2,000 per year

Who Should Apply: Guardian Angels Catholic School and Parish families with financial need determined by TADS application.

Who’s Eligible: Guardian Angels Catholic School and Parish families.

You’ll want to know:

  • Families must complete a TADS application
  • Applicants may also qualify for additional tuition assistance.
  • No separate application is required for this scholarship.
  • Annually renews if similar standards are met each year.

Apply for Scholarships by February 5 by clicking on the button below