On November 17, four members of the Class of 2016 signed letters of intent to commit to play at the college level.
- Anna Flynn, a 4 year member of the Cross Country and Track teams, will run at Boston College.
- Katelyn Kerrick, a rower with the RowAmerica Rye Rowing Club, will row at Clemson University.
- Margaret Mandarano, a rower with the City Island Rowing Club, will row at the University of Wisconsin, Madison.
- Angie Rizzi, a 4 year varsity softball player, will play softball at Long Island University, Brooklyn.
The Ursuline School is incredibly proud of the hard work and dedication of all of our student/athletes. These students have worked hard, and proven themselves to be leaders both in and out of the classroom and athletic arena. The opportunity to take this next step in college is the result of years of commitment by the girls and their families.
The signing ceremony, held in the Collaborative Learning Room of the Gabelli Library, was attended by friends and family members along with members of The Ursuline School Administration, Athletic Department, Coaches and Staff. The Ursuline School looks forward to great things from each of these young women in the future.
On November 10, The Ursuline School was honored to host an Opening Night Reception and unveil the newly acquired African American Fine Art Collection in the Gabelli Library. The artwork was donated by Donna Edwards '75 and her daughters, Danielle and Dionne.
The artwork was presented from the estates of Donna's parents, Commissioner Theodore U. Edwards and Dr. Ione Louise Dunkley Edwards. The artwork includes: a mixed media piece by Ben Hollis, a limited edition lithograph by Ann Graves Tanksley, an Oil on canvas by Robert Threadgill, a mask by David Davis, and collection of African American historical books.
The event was attended by more than 100 guests from the Ursuline community as well as the Edwards family and members of the Hudson Valley (NY) Chapter of The Links, Incorporated and members of Saint Simon the Cyrenian Episcopal Church of New Rochelle. Donna's Ursuline classmates also came to celebrate this special event. Channel 12 News was on hand to interview.
President Eileen Davidson gave the welcome. Sr. Ann Peterson, OSU offered remarks and a blessing of the art. Then Donna Edwards '75 shared how important the art was to her family and how special it was to donate it to Ursuline, where her parents had been active in the parents organizations. As a student, Donna had been one of the co-founders of our Black Essence Club so it was fitting that the program included remarks by two current leaders of that club.
The Ursuline School is grateful to be the new home of this beautiful and important collection of art. We are excited to share it with members of the school community for years to come.
On November 10, the juniors and seniors had a thought-provoking and valuable experience when “Defamation” was presented on our campus. “Defamation” is an old-fashioned courtroom drama in which the plaintiff is claiming defamation of character against the defendant. Was racism or religious or social prejudice involved? The play explores these highly charged issues of race, religion, gender, class and the law with a twist: the audience is the jury.
The judge polled the student audience twice - before the deliberation began and at its end. The final vote ‘for the plaintiff’ or ‘for the defendant’ decided the outcome of the trial. In the post-show discussion, students asked questions of the actors and shared opinions on the inherent divisions that we have in our society, divisions that people usually have trouble discussing.
“Defamation” first premiered in 2010 and has been performed more than 160 times throughout the United States. According to the playwright Todd Logan, the play is intended to generate honest conversation on race, religion, gender and class. He believes that these conversations generate empathy, as participants hear different perspectives, all which the characters believe to be the truth from their perspective. Certainly, our students had plenty of questions and thoughts to share.
On Friday, November 6 a group of our Computer Science Honors students took part in a half-day field trip to the IBM Watson Global Headquarters in New York City's Silicon Alley. Thank you to our trustee and alumna Liz Healy ‘94 (IBM Partner, Global Business Services) who facilitated this trip.
Our girls were the first ever high school students to meet Watson at Astor Place and to visit the IBM Interactive floor/team.
IBM Watson is the future of technology! It is the cognitive system enabling a new partnership between people and computers. It uses natural language processing and machine learning to reveal insights from large amounts of unstructured data. The students all enjoyed the Watson 'immersion room' where they could actually feel as if they were inside Watson's brain (below).
The Watson center is where IBM brings top clients to meet Watson and learn how Watson can help transform their businesses and solve the world's problems (e.g. cancer). The center has been visited by top CEOs/CXOs of Fortune 500 companies, top media (e.g. Wall St Journal, Fortune, etc), top banking analysts, doctors, international and US government leaders, a few select graduate school students - and now our students!
The selfies with Watson were priceless (below, left). Hopefully they will test some of Watson's recipes in their cookbooks at Thanksgiving (below, right).
The Ursuline School augments our core computer science curriculum by including ongoing study of both the history of computing and current developments within the industry, so that our students have a better understanding of the study of computer programming as well as a broader perspective of the information technology industry, including potential career paths.
Our girls left IBM inspired and empowered about the possibilities of technology in whatever path they choose to pursue after graduation from The Ursuline School!
On November 2, 2015 we were very fortunate to host Anthony Doerr, the 2014 winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction for his novel All the Light We Cannot See.
Mr. Doerr delivered an animated and uplifting presentation to our high school students. He shared his journey as a writer and insight into how this novel developed over the course of 10 years. Ursuline students read All the Light We Cannot See as one of their summer reading assignments and asked thoughtful questions about characters, story elements, and the publishing process.
Mr. Doerr ended his talk by sharing his view that a goal of fiction writing is to help the reader look with empathy at others’ lives, combat stereotyping, and thus “nudge the world toward goodness.” Mr. Doerr spent a few minutes speaking with Parisian students and teachers visiting from our sister school, St. Ursule in France; those students had also read the book and had unique perspectives on the French characters in the novel.
He then generously signed stacks of books and took time to be interviewed by our Unison school journalists.
Afterwards, Mr. Doerr reflected, “ I had a truly lovely morning, and was so inspired to be around so many positive, intelligent, and fearless young women.”
Thank you to Chris Pope, our official school photographer, for his wonderful photos of this exceptional morning at Ursuline. Pictured below are Principal Carol Killebrew, left, and President Eileen Davidson with Anthony Doerr.
On October 28, we welcomed students and faculty from The Andalusia Islamic School of Yonkers. Our students and the students from Andalusia shared about faith and traditions, and attended class together.
Then we joined together for a community service activity in which we created Thanksgiving place mats for distribution by Meals-on-Wheels to home-bound local residents. There was much laughter and warmth as the girls learned how much we have in common.
Students from the two schools met at a leadership conference of National Junior Honor Society officers in Washington, D.C. in 2014. We were eager to learn about each other’s faith and culture since each school is interested in educating students to be effective global citizens.
We realize that our world is more and more culturally diverse. We are more globally connected and at the same time increasingly divided. We know that by listening to each other and working together we build tolerance and understanding so that we may become collaborators in solving the global problems we all face.
Following up on the initial meeting in Washington, students from The Ursuline School visited The Andalusia Islamic School this past winter. Now, Ursuline reciprocated by hosting the Andalusia School. We look forward to our next gathering!
Congratulations to our Section 1 Championship Tennis doubles team of Laina Campos and Vanessa Ciano.
These freshmen won the title on October 22 by defeating another all-freshman team, Mamaroneck duo Alison Zerbib and Katherine Orgielwicz, by the score of 6-4, 6-3. Our players have earned a trip to the NY State (NYPHSAA) Championships next week in Latham, NY.
We are proud of their outstanding accomplishment and look forward to their continued success next week. They are pictured here with Coach Andre Sinclair, at left, and Principal Carol Killebrew at right.
The Ursuline School has been informed that 6 more Ursuline seniors were named National Merit Commended Students.
We are very pleased to announce that Julia Amato, Marissa Copeland, Sarah Cosmedy, Elizabeth Judge, Brigid Lahiff and Jennifer MacGown join their 8 classmates previously recognized as National Merit Commended Students.
These talented seniors placed among the top 5% of the more than 1.5 million students who entered the 2016 competition by taking the 2015 Preliminary SAT or the National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT®) last year.
We are proud of each of our 14 National Merit Commended Students and 5 National Merit Semifinalists and their academic achievement!
On October 16 our Sophomore Class spent a great Personal Development day with Stu Cabe of the Boomerang Project. The girls were encouraged to go out of their comfort zone and reminded "you get back what you give". The girls bonded with their classmates while learning about themselves in a unique manner. Thank you to Stu for sharing his message with the girls.
The Personal Development Program is one of the unique offerings at The Ursuline School. The mission of this program is to provide students with an opportunity to learn about themselves, connect with others and create change in their world. We invite you to read more here.
Our cross country runners enjoyed great success at the 20th Annual Disney Cross Country Classic held at the ESPN Wild World of Sports Complex in Orlando, FL on October 9 and 10. Senior Anna Flynn won the Varsity race for a record, 4th consecutive time. She edged out her sister, Sarah, who took 2nd. Despite oppressive conditions, Anna led the team to a 2nd place finish. Read about it here in an article that Disney posted.
The JV team took 2nd place out of 16 schools, with Sydney Orr, Annina Bulfamante and Hadley Nyre coming in with top 10 finishes. With both teams placing 2nd, each of our 18 runners came home with a silver medal and the teams won the treasured Mickey trophies!
The weekend of October 17 - 18, our team of Sarah Flynn, Lily Sheehan, Caitlin Conly, Hadley Nyre and Claire Wilson ran off to a victory at the 60th NYC 8000m CC Relay. They shattered the old course record and defeated the competition by over 5-and-a-half minutes.
Sarah Flynn continued to excel. She was selected as the USATF New York High School Athlete of the Month for September 2015, based on her outstanding performances last month. She won the Cross Country League title on October 19.
In an illustration of the breadth and depth of team skills, the JV and Freshman teams won the League Championships at Van Cortlandt Park.
On October 21, Anna Flynn was named Con Edison Athlete of the Week. Read the LoHud article about Anna here.
Congratulations to the cross country teams!
On October 14, our 6th, 7th and 8th graders enjoyed a special day dedicated to Mind, Body and Soul. The girls rotated through three stations - coding, yoga, and a yarn craft. First they learned simple computer coding, using a program offered by Code.org and supervised by seniors in our computer science class. During a 45 minute session, our middle school generated 12,701 lines of code.
Then the students created a yarn craft titled "God's Eye" which we hung along the breezeway outside the cafeteria. Many seniors helped as part of their Make a Difference Day.
The girls were taught yoga movements by certified yoga teacher Mrs. Florence Mitchell from Himalayan Institute in PA. Mrs. Mitchell is the grandmother of a current student. She was assisted by her daughter, yoga teacher and current parent Kourtney Ketterhagen P '22. The many benefits of yoga include increased balance, posture and coordination.
The day ended with all the girls doing "The Wagon Wheel Relay" on Kelly Mac Field. The 9 team relay was an organized chaos with balloons, ping pong balls, hula hoops, elephant walks and a great display of teamwork!!
On October 14, the Class of 2016 continued the Senior Class tradition of Make A Difference Day. They were inspired by Liz McEntee DeCecco '98 who told her incredible story of living the Ursuline motto of Serviam over the years and how she has shared her talents with so many people worldwide. She encouraged the Class of '16 to go out of their comfort zone and share their passion for life with others.
Then the girls went out into the community to extend friendship, lend a hand, and spend time with those in our neighborhoods. They visited The Wartburg, Meals on Wheels, AFYA, United Hebrew Geriatric Center, Blythdale Early Childhood Center, United Cerebral Palsy, The Children's Center for Early Learning, PS 23 in Yonkers, The John Coleman Center and they helped Ursuline middle school students with a craft project.
After their morning service events, seniors gathered to speak about their experiences and reflect on the day. The Class of 2016 will add these hours of service toward the 50,000 hours that The Ursuline School community has pledged to Pope Francis as part of our Spiritual Bouquet. This is one of the many ways that Ursuline students live out the call of Serviam, “I will serve.”