Why should you send your daughter to Rosary?

From+left+to+right%3A+Anna+DiCrisi+22%2C+Emma+Silva+23%2C+and+Grace+Horeczko+22+at+Red+and+Gold+2021.+Photo+provided+by+Anna+DiCrisi

From left to right: Anna DiCrisi ’22, Emma Silva ’23, and Grace Horeczko ’22 at Red and Gold 2021. Photo provided by Anna DiCrisi

Anna DiCrisi, Editor

Last year, I wrote an article detailing the reasons why anyone should send their daughter to Rosary (Click here to read). While I stand by everything I wrote then, I figured I might as well share my personal experience now. Ultimately, the decision on where your daughter goes to high school will be up to you, but I can only hope my account helps you make that choice.

For some context: I came into Rosary when I was 14-years-old, barely a teenager. This spring, I will graduate as a legal adult. In those four years, I have learned so many lessons and experienced so many events that have shaped who I will be when I enter the daunting outside world. I have learned how to drive, how not to drive, how to budget earned money, how to successfully design an outfit around gold furry leg warmers, how to speak to adults, and how to viciously debate the great artists of the next generation. All these considered, the main thing Rosary has taught me is how to embrace myself.

More than anything, I have discovered that Rosary’s most important gifts have to do with a young girl’s identity. Coming in my freshman year, I was weird and awkward. I still am both of those things, but now I am staring in the face of my future—and I feel ready for it.

Other people’s opinions used to matter to me more than I’d like to admit. This was, of course, because I had not yet formed opinions about myself. Whenever I had to describe myself to others for a presentation or an application, I would just repeat what others had told me. However, the friends and teachers I met throughout my experience helped me recognize things in myself that I had never seen before. The small community of Rosary put me in a position where I had to face who I was. I couldn’t walk around behind other people or lay on the low until I graduated and moved on. Teachers confronted me, administration asked my opinion, club rushes got me out of my comfort zone, and ambassadors made me a leader. The tight-knit family of this community almost forced me to rise to challenges.

Elena Walz ’22 (left) and Anna DiCrisi ’22 (right) after becoming upperclasswomen at their Rosary day ring ceremony. Photo Credit: Laura DiCrisi

In my small classes and extracurricular activities, I made genuine relationships with my peers. Through truly deep conversations, their qualities melted into my personality, and I am all the better for it. Grace taught me to be honest; Elena taught me to be strong; Keira taught me to be kind; Katie taught me to be caring; Danielle taught me to be funny; Memphis taught me to be real; Dorothy taught me to be loving. I grew up beside them, and now we step into the light of adulthood into a brand new world that doesn’t know our plans or our dreams—but I know we are ready for it.

Although my peers grew beside me, the teachers that mentored us made a significant impact on our lives. I received my class schedule every year, naïve of all the nostalgia I would soon have for the classrooms listed on that paper. Each teacher at Rosary has their own life, their own problems, and their own families, but that never stops them from coming in early for tutoring or meeting with students to go over assignments. Due to the class sizes and the expectations, each teacher I have had has made a connection with me: they have gone out of their way to understand who I was and where I was coming from. Their insight and outgoing personalities make this school what it is. Mr. Bevins taught me to forge my own experiences; Mrs. Hunt taught me to treasure the small things in life; Ms. Barclay taught me to run towards what I am passionate about; Dr. Villasenor taught me to make every opportunity exciting; Mr. Stegink taught me how to make someone else really feel special.

On that note, Rosary does a remarkable job of making each and every girl feel special.

Coming from a very small elementary school with 40 kids in my grade, eighth grade me worried about being seen in high school. Whether or not it’s a little selfish, the truth is I wanted people to know who I was. Luckily, that was not an issue here. Rosary is such a participatory environment. It invites girls to play games at pep rallies. It asks them to lead their classmates in an original musical production. It gives every type of girl the opportunity to be on prom court. At one time or another, every student at Rosary has felt heard. Whether through a teacher or a leadership position, this school nurtures and focuses on every girl’s potential. It is because of that environment that I am so confident in my abilities today.

I don’t know where I will be next year. I might be in Los Angeles. I might be up north. I might leave the state for the first time without my parents and live hundreds of miles away.

Am I absolutely terrified of the future? Yes—but I am ready.

Rosary’s upbeat world has kept me on my toes, preparing me for anything. I don’t want to leave this school, but the more times I open a magazine or turn on the news, the more convinced I am that the next class of Rosary Academy needs to graduate and start changing the world. The alumna of Rosary are independent and challenge the status-quo; they take an hour out of their day to hear another point of view; they have faith to believe in the good of others beyond their understanding.

You should send your daughter to Rosary. That’s what I would do, anyway.