Woodlands Academy honors 2023-24 achievements

Many Woodlands Academy of the Sacred Heart students – and one of their teachers – were recognized for numerous achievements this school year during the Prize Day honors ceremony on June 4, the 165th annual distribution of awards.

“Prize Day is a special Sacred Heart tradition that dates back to the first Sacred Heart Schools over 200 years ago,” said Principal Rocco Gargiulo in his opening remarks.  “Today, on Prize Day, we gather as a community and take time to proudly celebrate each other – our academic achievements, our hard work and our good choices. Our collective drive and determination to learn, along with the love and care shown for each other, are what makes Woodlands such a special place.”

Highlights included presentation of the 2023-24 Woodlands Award, the highest honor a Woodlands Academy student can attain. Based on the votes of faculty and students, this award recognizes outstanding service, leadership, character and scholastic development. This year’s recipient is senior Aanya Sahu.

The Distinction in Studies Award was presented to Gianna Keuer for maintaining the highest scholastic average during her four years of high school. She is the Class of 2024 valedictorian.

Megan Caserio, who is this year's salutatorian, achieved the second-highest grade point average after four years of high school.

The Frances de la Chapelle Excellence in Teaching Award was established in 1992 by the Lawrence Haggerty family to honor Sister Frances de la Chapelle, a former head of school at Woodlands Academy. Its purpose is to acknowledge and promote excellence in teaching. The winner is chosen by a vote of the faculty and administration from among faculty members nominated by students. Social studies teacher Maureen Shinnick is this year’s recipient.

Other honorees included:

2024 Global Scholars Karishma Bhatara, Maria Claro, Elizabeth Erricolo, Gianna Keuer and Judith Koukol. Their diplomas and transcripts will include the designation of “Global Scholar” in recognition of their successful completion of this Center for Global Studies program for students with a keen interest in and passion for global issues. 

Gianna Keuer and Campbell Eggers, recipients of the Woodlands Academy Service Award in recognition of their passion for service and dedication to the poor and marginalized of our society in the true spirit of Sacred Heart Schools’ Goal III, “a social awareness which impels to action.”

 Greer Talty, recipient of the Peggy Haggerty Award in memory of the Class of 1971 alumna who modeled the Sacred Heart values of “courage and confidence” and “generosity and gratitude,” leaving behind a rich legacy of strong leadership, service to others and good humor.

Salome Diaz-Rojas, recipient of the Janet Erskine Stuart Award given to a senior boarder who consistently fosters community building through her leadership, service and generosity.   

 Campbell Eggers, recipient of the American Legion Award given by votes of the faculty and students for courage, character, leadership, honor, and service to the community and country.

 Congratulations to all our 2023-24 honorees!

Photo caption:

Senior Aanya Sahu displays her 2023-24 Woodlands Award, the highest honor a Woodlands Academy student can attain. Also pictured is Head of School Susan Tyree Dempf, Ph.D. (Photo credit: Josa Comstock)