Saint Ursula Academy congratulates its resilient Class of 2020. Several graduating seniors earned special honors and were recognized at the socially distanced drive-in commencement ceremony on June 28.
These special honors are given for academic achievement or in memory of individuals who made essential and enduring contributions to the Academy. They are awarded to students whose academic achievement, leadership, deep spirit of faith, and Christian service exemplify the quintessential qualities of a graduate of Saint Ursula Academy. Their classmates nominate the recipients of the Awards of Honor, and a committee of faculty members makes the final selection.Gold Medal for Academic Achievement ~ ValedictorianAriel Yoshitomi-GraySilver Medal for Academic Achievement ~ SalutatorianMaya GoertemoellerSaint Angela Merici AwardStephanie Elisabeth Marie Ahrnsen
In 1535, Saint Angela Merici founded the Ursuline Order, the first religious order in the Church to undertake the personal formation of young women.
Angela believed that educated women held the key to a strong family, a sound Church, and a stable society. She had the courage to lead and transform her world.
This award, the highest honor given to a Saint Ursula Academy student in the graduating class of 2020, is given to a student who, like Angela Merici, exemplifies the qualities of confident leadership, a sense of compassion for others, a strong faith, and the ability to make positive change in her world. Mother Gertrude Creamer AwardMaya Jocelyn Goertemoeller
Mother Gertrude was a much-loved teacher and long-time principal at the Academy who made each student feel important and respected. She always encouraged her students to realize their power as Christian women and to be loyal to God, to Family, and to themselves.
Under her tenure, Saint Ursula Academy came to be recognized by the community as an institution that provided an outstanding education.
This award recognizes a student from the graduating class of 2020 who, like Mother Gertrude, is highly respected by her fellow students and by the faculty for her leadership and service here at the Academy and in the community. Sister Mary Carmel McLellan AwardKellie Rose Hannan
Sister Mary Carmel, a member of the Ursulines of Cincinnati, continued the tradition begun by
Angela Merici in opening new roles for women in society when she became the first woman to receive a doctoral degree from the University of Cincinnati.
This award recognizes a student from the Saint Ursula Academy class of 2020 who, like
Sister Mary Carmel, exhibits the rigorous academic discipline, the initiative, and the leadership to forge new paths for women in the world. Mother Fidelis Coleman AwardElizabeth Leigh Olson
Mother Fidelis saw a need and broke the mold to start a new community of Ursulines that would not only educate students in a private academy, but who would also teach in the parochial schools of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati.
Responding to a request of Archbishop Moeller in 1910, the new “Ursulines of Cincinnati” committed themselves to teach, serve, and care for the people of all social classes in the city.
This award recognizes a student from the Saint Ursula Academy graduating class of 2020 who, like Mother Fidelis, has demonstrated initiative and leadership in her school and in her community. Roberta Foley AwardIsabella Jean Glynn
Miss Roberta Foley taught drama and English to Academy students for decades.
She is remembered as a woman who maintained high academic standards for students and as one who recognized and promoted the enduring values of good manners and courtesy to others. This award honors a student from the Saint Ursula Academy class of 2020 who best exemplifies Ms. Foley’s academic ideals and Christian courtesy.
Sister Mary Helen Sanker Award
Hannah Brooklyn Meyer Lesko
Sister Mary Helen was an outstanding educator who, as both teacher and principal, inspired generations of Saint Ursula students, parents, and faculty by her personal interest in them, by her faith, and by her zest for teaching and learning.
This award is given to a student from the Saint Ursula Academy class of 2020 who, like
Sister Mary Helen, demonstrates strong academic achievement, a clear sense of values, and a concern and commitment to the needs of others which enriches the lives of all those around her.
Emelyn Saige Clairesse Smith
The faculty of Saint Ursula Academy gives a special award to a student whose contributions to school and community cannot go unrecognized. The faculty has chosen to honor a student from the Saint Ursula Academy class of 2020 who possesses a contagious enthusiasm for learning as well as an inspiring sense of spirituality and whose community service, both within and outside the walls of Saint Ursula, is exemplary.
Judith Thompson Olberding Award
Sylvia Mary O’Connor
Judy Olberding taught Religion and chaired the Religion department at Saint Ursula Academy for many years. Judy was known for her integrity, her compassion, her intellectual curiosity, her strength in times of trial, and her wisdom.
This award, established by the faculty in her memory, recognizes a student in the graduating class of 2020 who displays these same admirable qualities.
PHOTO Courtesy The New Studio: This photo is a collage of individual images.
Front Row L-R: Hannah Lesko, Maya Goertemoeller, President Lelia Kramer, Ariel Yoshitomi-Gray, Elizabeth Olson
Back Row L-R: Sylvie O’Connor, Saige Smith, Stephanie Ahrnsen, Isabella Glynn, Kellie Hannan