Counting Every Blessing

Jan 2, 2019 | Cougar Chronicles

2018 was a year of small (but mighty) miracles. 

In August, we welcomed our largest freshman class to date – a group of 134 impressive students. In September, students began their work-study year with more than 100 business partners throughout central Ohio. Jeremiah, a senior who works at Easton, described the experience of going back to work: “I felt overjoyed, like I was reunited with a family more than a workplace.”

In October, our student council did an excellent job of building school spirit when they planned our first ever homecoming game. Go Cougars! By November, 65% of our senior class was accepted into college – and we’re just getting started!

This year we also offered two new groups to our students, Youth Empowerment Support (YES), and Ruling Our eXperiences (ROX), which give the students a space to gain confidence and initiate positive change. In December, the students in YES organized a drive to collect and distribute winter hats, scarves, gloves, and boots to the homeless population of downtown Columbus. We’re so proud of these young leaders.

2018 was filled with joy, gratitude, and blessings – and you made it possible. Our supporters really do become family, and we are so grateful for each and every one of you

Looking ahead, we’re excited. In 2019, our third graduating class of seniors will head off to college, and a new crew of freshmen will arrive. The new year will bring new blessings, and you’ll join us for the ride. Happy New Year!

With gratitude,

Jim Foley

Surpassing School Records 

For the first time in Cristo Rey Columbus history, more than half of our seniors have received at least one offer of admission from a four-year college or university in just the first few months of school!
Way to go, Class of 2019! 

In our next newsletter, we’ll showcase the vast list of schools that have extended offers, and we’ll talk to students about their college preparations.
Think our seniors can get to 100% college acceptance by Spring Break? Stay tuned!

 The word “partnership” can represent many levels of connectivity. Our neighbors at the Columbus Metropolitan Library have certainly gone above and beyond in their partnership with our school, and their relationship with our students. Not only has the Columbus Metropolitan Library served as the host site of many of our events, but it also doubles as a hangout spot for students waiting to catch the bus after school, or wanting a quiet place to study. We recently heard from Sarah Wright, a Youth Services Manager at the Library. She shared a few quotes about our students from her colleagues: 
“This is the best class of teens we’ve ever seen!”

“The teens have done a great job of working as a group to correct each other when they notice issues. So, even the teens who struggle with some of the rules are starting to get pulled in with the good influence of the other students.” 

“Students are doing a great job of walking away when they get upset.” 

“The current freshmen class shows so much maturity. We’re impressed!”

Many of our students also enjoy earning volunteer hours at the Library. Shylynne, ’19, is pictured above volunteering at CML’s Holiday Open House. 

A Heart For Giving Back

Maryann is a junior at Cristo Rey who works at Catholic Social Services’ Our Lady of Guadalupe Center. The Center helps strengthen families, and provides crisis relief to the Hispanic community. Maryann’s job entails caring for children in the Center’s daycare, while their families take advantage of the various resources available.

Maryann began to recognize a need among the families this holiday season, and enlisted the help of her classmates to raise money for Christmas gifts for the children at the Center. The students came together as a school to support Maryann’s fundraiser by hosting Penny Wars (a competition between classes that collects coins and bills in an effort to score points), and an event called “Winter Thrift” that sold coats and winter accessories at a discounted price.

It’s safe to say their teamwork and dedication paid off. Maryann and her classmates’ fundraising efforts brought in more than $300 to buy toys for the children at Our Lady of Guadalupe Center. Maryann was able to deliver the toys and surprise the children during her last day at work before Christmas break. She said, “It was so rewarding to see the kids’ eyes light up. I couldn’t have done this without the help of my classmates and our Work-Study department!” 

Maryann, pictured above, used the money raised and filled our van with toys! 
Our Lady of Guadalupe Center was thrilled to accept the heartfelt donation from Maryann and her classmates.