Founders Day: Montrosians Gather Online to Celebrate Our History

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(Credit: Adam Richins)

A snapshot of Montrose included in Stud Gov’s Founders Day presentation last week.

Elyza Tuan '23, Clubs & Classes Editor

The first month of school has come to an end, and the Montrose Exec Team has led four successful Common Homeroom (CHR) meetings: two Big and Little Sisters events, the Activities Fair, and Founders Day. 

Last Wednesday, the team prepared a presentation to educate the school about how Montrose originated and to recap the progress we’ve made over the years. CHR hadn’t even started when a surprise announcement came from Ms White. Anna Sheehan ‘21 had won a prestigious national award: the National Merit Scholar award, which she earned with her exemplary score on the PSAT-NMSQT. Shocked, Anna said later, “Ms White is quite the announcer!” Remember to congratulate Anna the next time you see her!

Back to the presentation, Stud Gov started off by introducing St. Josemaria, founder of Opus Dei, friend of Fr. Dick, and a dear figure to our school. Then, Student Body Treasurer Catherine Olohan ‘22 talked about Montrose’s mission statement and philosophy which, in short, is about developing virtue and creating leaders out of Montrose students. A few slides later, Stud Gov Exec Secretary Kasey Corra ‘22 talked about our sister schools all over the world, which really reminded everyone that our close-knit school is a part of something larger than ourselves. It was also amazing to see how much Montrose has grown. With the number of students and staff, the traditions, the different buildings on campus, and so much more, we have truly grown into a greater, closer community.

Many people enjoyed the photos of students and teachers from the past. It was fascinating to see staff members like Mrs. White as a student in a uniform holding a bag just like us. It was so fun seeing the younger Dr. Bohlin, Mrs. Elrod, Mrs. Demirjian, and others. It was almost like a journey to the past, looking into the heart and soul of Montrose “back then,” which looks a lot like the Montrose we know today! The buildings over the years may have changed, the uniforms may have been tweaked, teachers and students may have come and gone, but the amazing thing is that the heart of our school always stayed the same.

Speaking of students who came and went, some alumnae spoke in a compilation video. Recent alumnae also made an appearance, including Maggie Gilbert ‘18 and Devyn Gianino ’20, who have returned to coach JV soccer. One alum in particular graduated a little while ago in 1996 and is still a part of the Montrose community today: Mrs White. She loved all the joy, laughter and friendship that she had to come back for more! She commented on this week’s CHR: “My favorite part of CHR is seeing the history, hearing other alums favorite memories, and actually walking down memory lane and looking at old pictures myself in preparation.” It is a very nostalgic time for those who have been in the Montrose community for a long time.

It is also a new and exciting time for members of the Executive Student Government who are tackling the obstacles that come with maintaining a sense of community with the social distance barrier. Treasurer Catherine Olohan ’22, Secretary Kasey Corra ’22,  Vice President Gabriella Bachiochi ’21, and President Maevis Fahey ’21 have been working nonstop to organize these events for the school with creativity, optimism, and RESILIENCE. 

So far, they all have really enjoyed the process together and have bonded as a group over the past few weeks. Maevis commented on her fellow Executive team mates: “I had such a memorable time going through the Founders Day presentation with Gabriella, Kasey, and Catherine. They are the ones who make me so proud to be a part of Montrose and especially the Stud Gov team.” Gabriella is also pleased with what they have been able to accomplish: “I’m so proud to tell the school about our history with [the Exec team] by my side because I know that we all feel the same enthusiasm for Montrose!”

Although the shift to online learning last school year was difficult, the shift to virtual CHRs has been significantly smoother. It helps that CHR is meant to be a place to destress and have fun with our community. It can be expected that there is more positive feedback and less disgruntled students than when we transitioned to Zoom classes in the spring. Still, there is the struggle of getting people to attend, but it turns out, that’s not really an issue. Kasey said: “Running CHR online has been SO much better than I originally anticipated — people are still showing up and being vocal and enthusiastic so that’s been really fun and a huge relief.” It is so great seeing the Montrosians supporting and cheering on Student Government. Catherine agreed: “It’s been super encouraging that so many people have been Zooming in and giving positive feedback, and it makes the entire Exec team want to make the next CHR even better than the previous one.”

Founders Day brings Montrosians back together every year and gives students the chance to learn about the history of our beloved community, which is important for any tight-knit family. I think Mrs. Young said it well: “Being reminded of our historical roots instills a sense of gratitude that we all need to have especially these days when times are hard and unpredictable.” So let Founder’s Day remind us to feel grateful for our progress from the past, our place in the present, and our potential for the future as we grow through everyday challenges with, keeping the Student Government theme of resilience in mind.

 

Elyza Tuan ’23

23etuan@montroseschool.org