This has been another great year to be a Lancer! We at Salpointe could not be more proud of our students and their high level of accomplishment. Congratulations are in order for so many, starting with the Class of 2019. This group of 281 seniors has wowed us with their talent, energy and commitment to Lancer values in the classroom, in athletic competition and on the stage. Members of this class were accepted to 165 colleges and universities and earned over $20M in merit scholarships. We are proud of their successes and know that they will embrace the challenge to excel at the next level.
On behalf of the Carmelites, the Board of Directors and Salpointe’s leadership, I salute Michael Slania for successfully completing six years of extraordinary service as Chairman of the Board. Mike has given selflessly, shared a strong sense of pragmatic vision, served on countless committees, chaired dozens of board meetings, and consistently supported Salpointe’s leadership with balance and enthusiasm. Mike and his wife Jody have two Lancer sons, Dan ‘10 and Matt ‘13. We welcome the incoming Chairman of the Board, Pat P. Lopez, III ‘74. Pat and his wife Marilou ‘74 have three Lancer daughters, Katie ‘03, Melissa ‘05 and Mary Elise ‘07. Pat’s parents are Pat P. Lopez, Jr. '53 (RIP) and Barbara Pattison Hodges '53, making the Lopez clan a three-generation Lancer family!
Salpointe continues to lead the way in secondary education in Southern Arizona, with strong Humanities and STEM programs, award-winning fine arts and athletics, and a rigorous curriculum including honors, college prep and twenty AP courses. To maintain this competitive edge and to strengthen our commitment to holistic education, Salpointe is moving forward with the “Aspire: Arts Academics Athletics” capital campaign. Aspire will round out the student holistic experience by (1) creating the transformative, synergistic Stearns Center for the Arts, with new or renovated learning spaces for Drama, Band, Choir, Dance, 2D and 3D Art as well as a theatre lobby/art gallery; (2) renovating six classrooms and expanding the STEM outdoor learning experience; and (3) expanding the weight room, renovating the wrestling room, air conditioning and upgrading the concessions area in the Kalil Family Gymnasium, and lighting the baseball, softball and track fields.
Very Reverend William J. Harry, O.Carm., Prior Provincial of the Order of the Carmelites, notes, “The Aspire campaign’s focus on the arts reflects the important role of the arts in our faith. Music, painting, sculpture and drama are all celebrations of God’s creative role which our Church has promoted through the centuries. The Aspire campaign is Salpointe’s commitment to enable our students to experience this aspect of our faith.”
Salpointe has realized gifts or pledges of $7.2 M to date, with a goal of $10M. The school is forever grateful for leadership gifts from Sandy and Brian Stearns, Ginny Clements, George Kalil, Jeff and Sharon Stevens, Kevin and Cindy Boesen, Pocono Foundation and Salpointe Catholic Education Foundation. The school plans to complete the fundraising and dedicate the new facilities in May 2020. The fundraising campaign is still in the “silent phase,” but our entire community will soon have the opportunity to participate. If you are interested in learning more now, please contact me or Jen Harris at 520-547-5878. We would love to share the vision!
Salpointe’s Campus Ministry team organized several Kairos retreats for senior/junior students this year. These God-centered, four-day retreats focus on spirituality and selflessness while stressing the importance of a meaningful encounter with Christ. Students reflect upon their personal relationships with God, family and friends. The Service Learning team organized Impact Days, when 1200 students and 141 employees each served 14 hours over two days for a total of 18,774 hours at 104 non-profit organizations! This community service was theme-oriented, with freshmen working on poverty and hunger, sophomores on environmental justice, juniors on vulnerability and seniors on justice. Service at Salpointe doesn’t happen solely during Impact; the Lancers serve our community all year long: junior Morality students partnered with Primavera Men’s Shelter, Beads of Courage, Kino Border Initiative, TMC Foundation, Casa Alitas, St. Luke’s Elder Home, St Francis Men’s Shelter and The Fountains. Theology and Spanish students volunteered at the St. Pius Shelter in the fall and Casa Alitas in the spring, assisting migrant families and asylum seekers as they traveled through Tucson. When asked to comment on these year-long commitments to the underserved in our community, Service Director Jessikah Eller humbly responded, “We are Lancers, Carmelites and Catholics. This is what we do.”
In the area of performing arts, thanks to our dedicated and talented Lancer musicians, Salpointe is back on the road to competing in marching band. Additionally, two musicians were selected for the all-region band. In theater, Salpointe produced “Footloose,” “Bang Bang You’re Dead,” “Faith County Fair,” “Murder, Music and Mayhem” dinner theatre, and partnered with “Stories that Soar.” The one-act play “Dia de los Muertos” received a “superior with distinction” ranking at the Arizona State Thespian Festival, and for the 21st consecutive year, Salpointe was named a Gold Honor Troupe by the Arizona Thespian Society. For the ninth consecutive year, Salpointe Lancers will compete in the International Thespian Festival in June in Nebraska. And to wrap up the year in fine arts, our amazing choir was selected to travel to New York City to perform at Carnegie Hall.
The athletic department offered 24 sports and 42 teams (FR, JV, V) for Lancer participation. Six Lancer teams earned state championships: women’s soccer, men’s soccer, women’s cross country, baseball, softball and beach volleyball pairs. Additionally, four teams claimed state runners up trophies: football, women’s volleyball, cheer and men’s swim and dive. This means that ten of our 24 sports competed in state championship games! And eleven teams were named region champions! Congratulations to 24 Lancers who have who made the commitment to participate in sports at the collegiate level. Salpointe is grateful for the dedicated professional commitment from our faculty and staff. These employees truly give their lives to this dynamic place; they are mission-driven and they exhibit the essence of what it means to be a Lancer. Several of our treasured colleagues are retiring or making career moves and we wish each of them the very best in their next adventure: Michaele Chapman (English), Zach Davidson (Social Studies), TJ Gomez (Theology), Jason Hastings (STEM), Ross Helland (Band), Terry Hubbard (Spirit Store), Br. Mike Joyce (Theology), Br. Kevin Keller (Theology) Jane Klein-Schiller (Learning Lab), Joan Koziol (Library Assistant), Carissa Lee (Dance), Diego Lopez (Theology), Paula Schoenbrod (Nurse), Shannon Seidl (Science),Trish Stanley (Nurse), Roger Werbylo (Math), Liz Werner (Science).
We extend gratitude to the Salpointe Catholic Education Foundation for once again supporting the Lancers. In 2018-2019, the SCEF supported excellence in education by pledging $500,000 in support of the Aspire campaign. Salpointe is grateful to president Amy Huether and the SCEF Board of Directors and members for their vision and support. Salpointe also congratulates the gala committee for an amazing gala, “A Swanky Affair,” which raised over $60,000 in support of the Foundation. Congratulations to chair Jennifer Barner, co-chair Kristin Tomlinson and the gala committee! We invite you to join us in our pride! You, our Lancer family, are an integral part of the wide-ranging successes of our students. Thanks to your loyalty and support, Salpointe continues to light the way for our students and community.