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MSJ Open House.... A Night of Success

Ashley B. Class of '21

Recently, Mount Saint Joseph Academy had the pleasure of welcoming several families to our annual open house. With mandatory masks and social distancing guidelines implemented, each family was screened upon entering the school. They were greeted by our tour guides who consisted of current Student Ambassadors and Student Government members and from there, the tours began.

First, the newcomers visited our lovely chapel adorned with stained glass windows, which is where we used to celebrate mass every Wednesday. We now hold weekly masses in the Martin McDonough Gymnasium, where we can safely social distance while we celebrate. Next, prospective students and their families were led downstairs to our music room where they were able to ask Mr. Z, the music teacher, some questions as well as peruse the various instruments on display which are used by our students for practice. On that same floor, the families explored the Shoestring theater and the drama room, where members of our Drama Club practice after school. Then they made their way up to the Art Hallway where some students' colorful art pieces are displayed. The classroom itself is decorated with drawings, paintings, and fairy lights on every wall. Next was the cafeteria, where eye-catching food paintings from past alumni are displayed. Although current students are no longer eating all together in the cafeteria, they can still catch a glimpse of the vibrant canvases when using the microwaves to heat up their food. From the cafeteria the newcomers were led to our library where they met several teachers.

The teachers were all seated at individual tables with their subject textbooks on display. As the prospective students and their families went around the room, they were able to meet the teachers, ask them questions and learn about the different curriculums. The first tables they went to belonged to the English teachers, Mr. Bartenstein and Mrs. Oldham who told the prospective families the different classes they teach, such as: Religion Sacraments, American Literature, British Literature, Literature and Composition, Psychology, Criminology, English Honors, Creative Writing, Research Methods. Along with English classes, Spanish classes are also offered which is taught by Senora Ana Araguas. Next they met the science teachers, Mr. Bartenstein and Mr Smith, who had beakers and real skeleton bones laid out for the newcomers to admire. The classes they teach include: Health, Biology Honors, AP Biology, Anatomy and Physiology, Earth Science, AP Chemistry, respectively. On the table to the left were the Math teachers, Mr. Tuckerman and Mrs. Rafter, who teaches: AP Calculus, Geometry Honors, Algebra 2 Honors, Physics Honors, Pre-Calculus Honors, Algebra 1 College Prep, Advanced Math, Geometry College Prep, Algebra 2 College Prep and Accounting, respectively. Lastly, the art teacher, Miss. Hogan was surrounded by a number of students’ paintings and a computer which allowed passersby to doodle digitally.

Overall, the Open House was a success with a dozen families in attendance. The tours went smoothly, all questions were answered and complimentary snacks were provided. Mount Saint Joseph Academy would like to thank the faculty and current families that helped out with the event as well as everyone who came and we are eager to see you next year!

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