SCA Online News
November 2020
Alma Matters
Celebrating alumnae with Albanian Heritage in November:
Meet Lisa Elezovic Camaj '00, school psychologist
Lisa Elezovic Camaj '00 is a school psychologist at P.S.106 in the Parkchester section of the Bronx. She advocates for students in need of special education.

"My role is versatile as I complete evaluations, lead interdisciplinary meetings, consult with teachers, parents, staff and administration and work with students to ensure they are receiving appropriate educational services and social-emotional support. I find it very rewarding working with students and seeing them succeed," she says.

Lisa credits many teachers with challenging her during her years at St. Catharine's. "The teachers that most inspired me included Mr. Antinore, math; Sr. Dee, may she Rest In Peace; Mr. Mercora, social studies; Mrs. Morales, AP Calculus; Mrs. Angelis, English; and Mr. Hveem, religion. They all pushed me to work hard and believed in me. Their support gave me confidence to think outside the box and challenge myself."

She says she has many happy memories of her four years including the walk-a-thon as a freshman. "The entire school walked the streets of Pelham Parkway and I had the chance to meet new people and make lasting friendships. It was right at the beginning of the school year and the perfect chance to get to know others."

Recalling National Honor Society induction and graduation as extra special, Lisa recalls graduation as bittersweet. "I knew I was leaving a school that made me feel so comfortable and helped me grow into an adult with aspiring dreams. SCA was a safe haven and it was time to explore new challenges in life."

She also credits her Albanian heritage as being a major influence on her life. Both of her parents immigrated to the United States looking for a better future. Saying they valued education, Lisa adds, "My parents always taught me to work hard no matter what I was doing, big or small. My mother was especially devoted to our Catholic faith and made sure I put it into practice. I was taught to always be kind to others and have patience when things didn't seem to go the way I wanted. My Albanian roots have instilled in me empathy and a desire to make changes for the good; to push myself to be a better person."

Lisa hopes today's SCA students also set goals for themselves and strive for the best. Her advice to today's Catharinites:"Nothing is too big if you try and persevere. Also don't let little things get in the way. Have an open mind. Keep a balance of education and socialization. Most importantly, enjoy these four years of high school as it gets harder in college and when working. Be true to yourself."
SCA alumna featured in Mercy Education System
of the Americas' Black Catholic History Month Blog

Olga Segura '07, who is the opinion editor for National Catholic Reporter and a regular contributor to America, where she used to serve as an editor, is publishing Birth of a Movement: Black Lives Matter and the Catholic Church in February 2021. Her blog was included in the Sisters of Mercy's features for Black Catholic History Month. Read it here.
Around SCA
SCA students raise over $12,000 for Luv Michael

More than 40 students were involved in a virtual service project with an organization called Luv MichaelLuv Michael is an organization that helps young people with autism learn skills in the culinary industry. Our students spread awareness about autism to family and friends and were able to earn over $12,000 for the charity. 

 As part of the initiative, the students took their knowledge to friends and family and through text messages and social media, shared the message of Luv Michael.  They also asked their friends and family members for donations to the Luv Michael organization so they can keep up their work providing jobs to their clients. 

Luv Michael, according to its website, is "committed to creating and providing meaningful culinary jobs to the autistic population. The profits from Luv Michael aid in the growth of our business and allow us to develop new training modules for our employees.

"When I participated in Luv Michael, I really did not know what to expect," says Destiny Q. '24. "I had never worked with an organization like this. Luv Michael taught me amazing things. I learned about young adults with autism and what happens to them as they get older. Luv Michael taught me that autism doesn't just effect children.  They taught me that autistic adults are still people and shouldn't be treated differently.  We should treat people equally no matter what happens in their lives."
SCA community joins with Mercy Center 
for Thanksgiving Food Drive

The SCA community donated over 2,000 food items to the Mercy Center in the Bronx for its Thanksgiving Food Drive. Both the in school and virtual communities joined together to make sure their annual support continued this year, even when the circumstances were challenging.

"Every year here at SCA we donate to the food drive, which is so important because we are given the opportunity to give back to people who are in need," says Mykenzie M. '21. "This year might have been one of the most important years to donate due to the pandemic. People have lost jobs, family member, money and more so even the smallest donation to the food drive this year could have made a big difference."

"Participating in the food drive felt good and made me feel a step closer to helping others who are in need," concludes Yanique W. '21.

Take a trip down memory lane with Explore A Classes

This fall SCA invited 8th graders to explore different classes virtually rather than the usual in person Spend A Days in order to follow safety protocols. 

Now you can enjoy those classes as well right from the comfort of home. Feel free to share with others who want to know more about a day in the life of a Catharinite.

Here are all the videos for the Explore a Class videos for this season:
Student Spotlight
Dune Buggy which is part of Manhattan College's Mini Baja Project

Juniors and seniors attended Manhattan College's 
Engineering Awareness Day virtually

Five students from SCA virtually participated in Manhattan College's Engineering Awareness Day on November 11. They had the opportunity to learn about many fields of engineering and the program at Manhattan College itself.
"The event was very informative and inspiring for me," says Angelina P. '21. "It helped me to not only learn more about the field of engineering I want to major in, chemical engineering, but also helped me to foster an interest in the school environment. Being able to hear the experiences of graduates and how they applied their degrees/knowledge to their respective industries was very helpful for me in determining where I want to direct my academic career in college."
Antonella Q. '22 adds, "I decided to know a little more about chemical engineering and it was pretty fascinating, even though I am not into chemistry. The overall virtual experience was pretty fun and amazing."
Anda A. '21 says she liked seeing the labs the best. "I also liked hearing about the experience of the students there and the advice they gave us."
"My experience at Manhattan College was different from my experience last year," says Nayeli A. '22. "We were able to see the labs a bit more thoroughly because in the Zoom meeting you could focus on one image. I believe the panel members were able to answer our questions and this time they answered a lot more questions and gave me more information about the specific major I want to pursue."
Mahnoor S. '22 was drawn to the projects engineering students are doing at Manhattan College. "The Mini Baja was especially amazing to hear about. Students build and drive in the dune buggy themselves; it excites me knowing I could possibly get to work on a larger scale version of the robots I work on and drive in the Robotics Team and Advanced Robotics Class."
Circle the Dates

Learn how to mix cocktails while sipping
your creations virtually with alumnae this holiday season

Alumna Lauren Paylor '10, a mixologist and a nationally ranked bartender, will share some of her favorite cocktails for the holidays on Dec. 11, 2020, at 6:30 p.m. Register early to get your ingredient list and private link for the event. Must be 21+ to register.

Support SCA when you shop on Amazon
Support St. Catharine Academy this holiday season when you shop on Amazon.  Click on the following link  to donate to St. Catharine Academy at no additional cost to you.  Make an impact while you shop! 


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Donate Now (This year's Fund for Catharinites runs through August 31.)