Diocesan high schools graduate 242 students


By Anne Marie Amacher

Two hundred forty-two students graduated from the Diocese of Davenport’s five diocesan high schools last month. Valedictorians and salutatorians for the schools shared with The Catholic Messenger their top three achievements during high school, future plans and involvement in the church.

Notre Dame High School, Burlington

Twenty-two students graduated from Notre Dame on May 31.

• Andrew Gall, valedictorian, is the son of Tom and Mary Ann Gall of Burlington and a member of Ss. Mary & Patrick Parish in West Burlington.


His top three achievements are becoming an Eagle Scout, valedictorian and being selected as the Burlington/West Burlington Optimist Youth of the Year. Andrew will attend Iowa State University where he plans to major in biological systems engineering and minor in Spanish. He would like to work for a government agency or a private corporation on resource sustainability. In the future, he plans to continue serving as a eucharistic minister. “I would like to participate in another international service trip to Guatemala and volunteer for the God’s Child Project.”

• Craig Mayfield, salutatorian, is the son of Mark and Susan Mayfield of Wever.

His top three achievements are silver cord (earning more than 400 hours of community service in four years), operating his own lawn care business and staying academically oriented and keeping up his grades. He plans to attend the University of Nebraska at Lincoln and major in civil engineering. He would like to work for a construction company. Craig plans to continue to volunteer in the community by helping out at church soup kitchens. He would like to volunteer in another country, using what he learns in college. “I also hope to do volunteer work in a new community and help out those in need — especially kids.”

Prince of Peace College Preparatory, Clinton

Sixteen students graduated from Prince of Peace on May 24.

• Drew Sikkema, valedictorian, is the son of Bill and Annette Sikkema of Clinton and a member of Jesus Christ, Prince of Peace Parish in Clinton.

Drew’s top three achievements are being named to the Quad-City Times Salute to Academics and being a finalist in the Quad City Times Salute to Sports and Wendy’s Heisman State of Iowa. He plans to attend Iowa State University and major in engineering. Drew plans to serve the church by attending Mass and becoming more involved in the ministries. He plans to help through lectoring and also by becoming a eucharistic minister. “For the distant future, I plan to raise my children with a strong Catholic influence like how I was raised.”

• Salutatorian Ian Anglese is the son of Jerry and Deanne Anglese of Albany, Ill.

His top three achievements are Illinois State Scholar, acceptance into the National Honor Society and receiving Best of the Class Award. He plans to attend Iowa State University and major in aerospace engineering. “After that I hope to get an engineering job at a large organization, like NASA, Boeing, or Lockheed Martin.”

Serving the church in the future, Ian plans to make people’s lives easier. “I want to use what I learn in college at jobs that will allow me to build things that will improve the quality of life of people all around the world.” He’d like to help improve communications and transportation to reduce the barriers keeping people apart.

Assumption High School, Davenport

Ninety-four students graduated from Assumption on May 24. Three students were named valedictorians: Thomas Harris, Brianna Simpson and Frank Agnoli.

• Thomas, the son of John and Ann Harris of Davenport, is a member of St. Anthony Parish in Davenport. His top three achievements are academic all state cross country, American Legion Hawkeye boys state and Quad-City Times Salute to Academics in math and sciences. He plans to attend Augustana College in Rock Island, Ill.

He hopes to develop the values of stewardship that he has learned in his Catholic education. He believes his talents can be used to serve the church in a way that is unique and meaningful to him. “I believe a strong work ethic will be valuable as I embark on service trips to serve those in need.” He’s willing to make time to participate in liturgical roles such as lector or eucharistic minister.

• Brianna, the daughter of David and Carol Simpson of Davenport, is a member of St. Paul the Apostle Parish in Davenport.

Her top three achievements are theater vice president, valedictorian and National Honor Society. She plans to attend St. Ambrose University in Davenport and double major in chemistry and criminalistics.

In the future, she plans to continue to lector at her parish. “I would like to be involved in service through my church as well.” She plans to attend Mass weekly, join a Bible study and send any children she might have to Catholic schools.

• Frank, the son of Deacon Frank and Marianne Agnoli of Davenport, is a member of Our Lady of Victory Parish in Davenport.

His top three achievements are acceptance into the honors program at Loyola University in Chicago, induction into National Honor Society and being named a National Merit Commended Scholar. He plans to major in international film media studies at Loyola and would like to continue his education in that field to the doctorate level.

In the future, Frank intends to serve the church the way he has in high school by being a lector and an extraordinary minister of Communion. He also intends to serve the poor through community service, volunteering his time and energy at homeless shelters, food kitchens or “wherever God is calling me. Most importantly I hope to act as a youth leader within my community, to share my faith with young men and women and to teach and learn from them.”

Holy Trinity Catholic High School, Fort Madison

Thirty-nine students graduated from Holy Trinity on May 24.

• Valedictorian Josephine Dyer, the daughter of Greg and Michelle Dyer of West Point, is a member of St. John Parish in Houghton.

Josephine’s top three achievements are valedictorian, all-state academic volleyball team and arista (4.0) honor roll for all eight semesters of high school.

She plans to attend Iowa State University and study agronomy with an emphasis in plant breeding and agricultural biotechnology. After college she would like to return to her hometown and work at her family’s business.

Josephine plans to continue attending Mass and to support the Catholic school system.

• Courtney Baldwin, salutatorian, is the daughter of Jay and Michelle Baldwin of West Point and a member of Holy Family Parish in Fort Madison.

Her top three achievements were dance team captain for two years, all-Iowa honor dance team for three years and 4.0 honor roll. After graduation she plans to attend North Carolina State University and major in fashion and textile management.

Courtney plans to continue to attend Mass and eventually would like to send her future children to Catholic schools.

Regina High School, Iowa City

Seventy-one students graduated from Regina on May 24.

• Teddy Larew, valedictorian, is the son of Rick and Ann Larew of Iowa City and a member of St. Mary Parish in Iowa City.

His top three achievements are winning the state cross country championship, completing his Eagle Scout board of review and placing fourth at the state soccer tournament. He plans to attend the University of Notre Dame and major in finance.

Teddy plans to attend Mass weekly while in college and afterward. He plans to volunteer as a eucharistic minister or whatever liturgical minister is needed where he attends Mass. “I will be a good role model for the people around me by trying to live my life as Jesus would.”

• Salutatorian Sarah McCue is the daughter of Mike and Kathy McCue of Iowa City and a member of St. Mary Parish there.

Her top three achievements are maintaining a 4.0 grade point average, academic all-state in cross country and winning conference and regional titles in cross country in 2008. After graduation, Sarah plans to attend Colorado State University and major in business. She hopes to study abroad in either Spain or South America.

In the future, she plans to continue her role as a eucharistic minister at Mass. She would like to help out with confirmation meetings as she did her sophomore year. “By attending Mass and spreading the word of God through my actions, I will be a faithful servant of the church.”

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