How your student can get the most out of their high school experience

Selena Graduation.JPG
Selena Aungst, along with other classmates, were selected to perform a song at the Class of 2018 commencement ceremony.

While the national high school graduation rate continues to rise, only half of students in America feel that their schooling has sufficiently prepared them to continue their education.

Chaminade Julienne, a Catholic high school in Dayton, is pushing to change that statistic by providing a premier educational experience—better preparing students for life after senior year.

Last year, 97 percent of Chaminade Julienne graduates attended a college or university, and many of those students had already earned college credits, either through advanced placement (AP) classes or dual enrollment at Sinclair Community College or Wright State University.

John Marshall, Chaminade Julienne’s principal, credits the large number of college attendees to a rigorous academic program, diverse extracurricular programs, and a “whole student” approach.

"They understand the value of becoming lifelong learners," Marshall said. “Our educators challenge students with new perspectives and inspire them to reach for more — and to also ask questions. As members of clubs, teams and groups, they learn how to work with each other in achieving common goals. What’s really exciting is to see a student try a new skill and receive encouragement from the group. And for those who learn to encourage, many find their way into leadership positions. After high school, they take what they’ve learned — experience, skills, leadership — and continue to develop that.

“CJ’s service learning program is a great example. After four years of serving others through various community projects, our students grow to become compassionate young adults. They take with them a desire to help others — often rising up to leadership roles in their colleges and communities.”

Below are a few highlights of the resources your child can take advantage of as a Chaminade Julienne student to thrive in high school.

Participate in an excellent academic program. It doesn’t matter if your child wishes to apply to an Ivy League school or is looking for academic assistance or academic challenge, Chaminade Julienne educates and encourages students to help them achieve their post-secondary goals. With data-driven curriculum, programs like Senior Capstone, STEMM and Project Lead the Way — and a partnership with College Credit Plus — students have the experience and the tools to adapt to ever-evolving learning and working environments.

Hands-on programs prepare them to learn in-demand skills at the world’s leading companies. Whether their interest is in writing or biomedical sciences, they will gain valuable experience through their education to pursue their passion.

Take Selena Aungst, class of ’18, who will be attending California PolyTech University for Computer Science in the fall. She credits the STEMM program, which is committed to opening students’ eyes to fields in Science, Technology, Engineering, Math, and Medicine, for this decision.

“This year I joined the computer science club and had a lot of fun researching everything,” she said. “My teachers tell me that they need more women in the field, and I want to work for Google in cyber security.”

Exploring unknown talents. Aungst not only speaks highly of the academia, but embodies how extracurriculars can enhance the overall experience for students — she participated in multiple clubs during her four years.

“I was never home,” she said, chuckling. “I was always at school with all of my friends.”

But Aungst discovered a hidden talent during her time at Chaminade Julienne—playing the bass guitar. Before high school, she had never participated in the performing arts. But two friends convinced her to join an after-school band called the Monday Night Project, and the rest was history. Aungst completed two years of musicals, choir, and acapella.

With groups like the Anime Club, Fashion Club, Juggling Club, Mock Trial, and Student Council, your child is bound to find the place where they excel.

Taking advantage of impressive leadership opportunities. What makes a great leader? At Chaminade Julienne, it’s all about exposure to different cultures and learning from others.

“We have a diverse setting of students coming to us from 50 different zip codes,” said Marshall. “It creates an environment where students see a bigger perspective and have conversations with people who come from all backgrounds. Sharing ideas, and learning and working together is what sets them apart in being ready for their next level of their education.”

Students are often communicating with adults in the community, through volunteer work, acting as Eagle Ambassadors and school representatives, and serving as Student Development Chairs. As seniors, students complete a Senior Capstone project, where they explore and research a social justice issue through the lens of Catholic Social Teaching, to better understand the principles of leadership. The students often engage organizational leaders for research and to coordinate projects.

Learning for life. Chaminade Julienne graduates don’t stop learning after they walk across the stage at graduation. They finish their four years with a critical consciousness that enables them to better analyze issues, an ability to apply knowledge and skills to everyday problems, and a relentless quest for more knowledge.

“There are many things I wouldn’t have done if I had not gone to CJ. I was able to do everything to the best of my abilities,” Aungst said. “I have CJ to thank for that.”

Chaminade Julienne offers a quality, integral learning experience to a culturally diverse student population. To learn more about the school and admissions process, please visit