By Nia Walsh '20
Recently the students involved in NHS have established a bee pollinator on campus in the hopes to help our bee friends out! This bee pollinator was inspired by the 2019 Earth Day campaign to “protect our species.” This is a perfect way to help the already decreasing bee population out. It is also a wonderful way that is supporting the call to care for God's creations.
By creating this bee pollinator we are not only helping the local bee population, but we are being stewards of the earth and doing what God called us to do, which is caring for his world.
Unfortunately the bee population has been rapidly declining for quite some time. There are many global factors because of this. These factors consist of industrial agriculture, climate change, parasites, loss of biodiversity, the destruction of many bee habits, and the killing of bees due to pesticides. A quote from apnews.com says 14 species that were found in New England were decking as much as 90 percent. Many of these bees in this study were not honeybees, they were leafcutter bees. The difference between these two bees were that the leafcutter bees nest in the ground and the honey bees nest in trees. It is unfortunate that so many species of bees are declining due to our mistakes. Bees are such an important aspect to our environment and keeping them safe and supporting them is the least we can do to help them. And that is exactly FHA is taking steps towards!
The bee pollinator is located in the front of the school and is used to help the bees have a safe spot to pollinate flowers. As mentioned before, bees are such an important aspect to the environment. According to abc.net.com, “Honey bees contribute $20 billion to the value of U.S crop production.”
As we can see honey bees and all bees play such an important role even in our world. It is great that people are taking a stand in this important issue and are helping bring awareness to the bee decline. I am happy to be a part of a school that wants to take care of our bees and work towards the overall common. It is awesome that FHA is taking a stand and helping out our bees that can’t speak up for themselves! Some of the students involved in this project said it didn't take long to create and that it went smoothly because everyone worked efficiently and was willing to work hard. I asked Emanuela Gallo, senior in NHS, “what was the most rewarding feeling about building this pollinator garden?” She replied, “the feeling that we had helped the environment was very rewarding. As National Honor Society members, we strive to serve. This garden provided us the opportunity to make a difference, even if it is a small one.’’
Overall, our bees play a vital role in our world today and working towards helping them will truly benefit everyone especially our bees. It is wonderful that schools, communities, and all people are taking a stand and helping to make it better for the bees. There are many different reasons for the bee decline but helping out everyday weather it’s by throwing your plastic bottle in the recycling bin, turning off a light when you’re not in the room, or making sure you’re respecting your surroundings so the bees can freely pollinate can go a long way and help our bees out!
Mrs. DeLuca, one of coordinators of this program, said they are partnered with the “Pollinator Partnership Million Pollinator Garden Challenge” and their mission statement..."Protect their lives. Preserve ours." This is a great mission statement that sums up the overall importance of helping out for the common good.
By Kayla-Grace Beauvais '22
Here at Fontbonne Hall Academy there have been special events that turned into memories for many students. This year, many events turned into memories and it has been a great school year, even though it was a bit challenging.
The Walk-a-thon at Fontbonne this year was a very special memory because it was a way for the school and the students to be engaged together. The Walk-a-thon was also very inspiriing because the school raised money and we did it as one. It showed how our students take part in school activities. Most importantly, it showed how all students have a bond that connects us together here at Fontbonne.
Halloween was also a very fun event. Every year a day before Halloween or around Halloween, anyone who attends Fontbonne, whether it be a student or a teacher, dresses up in a costume to celebrate Halloween. It has always been a great event because it shows how Fontbonne teachers and students have fun and celebrate together.
Around Christmas, Fontbonne has a tradition that we do every year. The tradition is what makes the school unique and it’s what makes the students so happy. Every year at Fontbonne Hall Academy, each grade sings Christmas songs with all the years and they are all involved with this tradition. Teachers and students enjoy this tradition as well. It’s a day where we take a break off of school and celebrate Christmas moments with your homeroom, but here at Fontbonne our homeroom is FA.
Sports Night is also a fond memory from Fontbonne in 2019. Sports Night is a game night battling between all years. Each year must dance, skit and tumble against each year and also must create a song for their year. It’s seen as a competition to the students but it symbolizes how each year is connected with their own year. They share a sense of participation in a loving community with their year. Many students have agreed that here at Fontbonne, Sports Night was a great memory that they wouldn’t forget. Sports night is what makes the school so unique and traditional at the same time.
Ring Day is a great memory for the Junior year. It’s an important day because it symbolizes the Junior year on their way to their Senior year. For this event, it’s a special memory because it demonstrates how the year is growing together as a family and they share a special memory with the school.
All these memories hold a special place in each student’s heart. These memories have an impact on people that attended Fontbonne or people still attending Fontbonne. Many of these memories mean a lot and it’s unfortunate that now it’s just a memory and it can’t be done over.
By Julia Lepore '20
One of Fontbonne’s classes - Print Journalism, won “Best Multimedia Package” from The Tablet’s High School Press Awards. In this class, we created a video and article on the Veteran’s Day Scare. The article was written by graduating senior Jonel Lewis which gave us an advantage and helped us win this award.
In class, we worked extremely hard on making videos and writing different articles on topics that draw attention from our audience. All year we have been making videos, uploading stories and trying our hardest to enter contests and see what the outcome was. Experimenting by doing different things and exploring different topics in class expanded our horizons on what reporting and journalism really are about.
Winning this award was a big step for the class and the students in it. We have all worked hard in order to put in our best effort toward this assignment. Making the video brought us closer together and everyone is glad our hard work paid off in the end!
By Niamh McCarthy '22
This year, the Fontbonne Hall Academy Drama Club put on a production of Hairspray: The Musical. Here is an interview with one of the play’s leading actors, Emily Downey. Emily plays Prudy Pingleton, the mother of Tracy’s best friend Penny in the show.
Interviewer: Hello Emily. I am so excited to see how this performance goes!
Emily: Hello, thank you, I am too!
Interviewer: Why do you think people should come see our show?
Emily: I think people should come see the show because it has a good message. It sheds light on a part of history that’s kind of sad and hard to talk about.
Interviewer: What is your favorite song in the show?
Emily: I have a lot of favorite songs in Hairspray, but my top three are “ You Can’t Stop the Beat,” “Mama I’m a Big Girl Now,” and “I Can Hear the Bells.”
Interviewer: Do you get more excited or nervous when performing?
Emily: You know, I’m pretty excited because I love the energy of everybody on stage and it’s really special.
Interviewer: What do you want the audience to take away from the show?
Emily: I want them to take away that you should accept people of any color, ethnicity, or religion.
By Lilla Catanzaro '19
After a long process of consideration, Mrs. Glasser and Mr. Bailey chose Hairspray as our 2019 spring musical. With a fabulous musical score, strong characters, and, of course, the overall message of love and acceptance, Mrs. Glasser and Mr. Bailey fell in love with the show and were super enthusiastic to head straight to auditions to find the perfect cast. In the blink of an eye, auditions turned into rehearsals and, as we approach tech week, we finally come upon the home stretch of our Hairspray journey and couldn’t be more excited for our performances at the end of the week.
Stephanie Patella, a junior here at Fontbonne, is one of the leads in the play. She has participated in her school plays in the past. She loves performing on stage and singing and dancing in front of an audience. She was extremely excited when she heard that Fontbonne’s school play this year was going to be Hairspray. Stephanie said herself, “Hairspray is one of my favorite shows and I was extremely excited to be a part of this production alongside such a talented cast and crew.” She enjoyed working with others and enjoyed watching everyone bring their characters to life. She said, “Performing on stage with the costumes, lights, microphones, and props bring a thrilling and exciting feeling that I wouldn’t trade for the world.”
Stephanie plays the role of Amber Von Tussle. She is the daughter of Velma Von Tussle, who is the producer of the ever-famous teen television program The Corny Collins Show. Amber is the queen bee of the show and would do anything to win the title of Ms. Teenage Hairspray. She wanted to play the role of Amber because she has so much energy, great songs, and an overall enjoyable role to play. Although she does act as the antagonist in the play, she learns to see the good in the world and eventually take a more positive outlook on life.
Fontbonne’s drama club always puts together a great performance, and it was exciting to see the end product this year!
By Lilla Catanzaro '19
Mr. Haughwout is one of our newest members here at Fontbonne Hall Academy. He teaches Ninth Grade Visual Perception, and Major Art 1, 2, and 3.
He went to college at SUNY New Paltz. He started out as an art education major, but then switched to a major in visual art with a concentration in sculpture and graphic design, while minoring in history.
He later went to Touro College, where he got his Masters in education and special education. Mr. Haughwout was always prone to doodling and was strongly encouraged to do art because his dad is an art teacher. When he was younger, he found art in everything and drew whenever he got the chance to, even at the beach when he would build sand castles.
Although Haughwout loved to draw and has been doing it his entire life, he was a music major up until his senior year of high school, when he realized his passion was for art. Haughwout loved the idea that just by making and considering art, you engage in some form of innovation. Not only does he love doing art himself, but he loves to teach it. He said, “Teaching art gives me the opportunity to teach anything I want. I often incorporate other subjects into my lesson: math, science, history.”
Mr. Haughwout discovered Fontbonne through one of his good friends, Mr. Ugenti. The two of them went to Centereach High School together. When Fontbonne’s last art teacher, Ms. Suhr, moved away, Mr. Ugenti posted on social media asking if anyone was looking for a job as an art teacher. Mr. Haughwout was not necessarily looking for one because he was committed to being a stay at home dad. However, after learning about Fontbonne Hall Academy’s community and mission, he decided to apply for the job. He found the culture of the school very appealing and said that there is a camaraderie in the student body and faculty that is almost tangent.
Mr. Haughwout hopes to share his passion for art with the young women he teaches and inspire them to become artists themselves one day.
By Kayla-Grace Beauvais '20
As you know, Fontbonne Hall Academy has many school clubs for people to participate in. The clubs highlighted here are the Respect Club and the Friends for Life club. Both clubs are very prominent and popular, and people find the clubs very respectful and honorable to be in.
Respect Club is about having respect for certain subjects and topics. They focus on a variety of ideas that people should be aware of because many people tend to not bring up the topic. They focus on topics such as breast cancer, human trafficking, and Women’s History Month. It is a great environment for students to be around so that they are knowledgeable about what is going on in the world.
It is also a great way to participate with other people and a way to know more information about the topics being brought up.
Members of the club, as well as myself, find it a great environment to be in. It is a great community, and the way topics are addressed with one another shows the relationship amongst the students and how they feel about today. A member of this club, Lana El-Choum, who is a junior and the leader of this club believes that it was a great way for people to communicate and learn more about the world. She has taken her time on how to handle events taking place and how to address them.
Friends for Life is another inspirational club that participates in generous activities for human beings. This club is a great way to participate in Fontbonne community and be able to help a person. It focuses on human rights that all people should have.
Many fun, heartwarming activities for the club took place, such as singing Christmas carols to the elderly. The members are active in events to show how great our community is. It’s an excellent way for members of the club to be active and have a glimpse of the real world.
March for Life is an annual march in Washington, D.C. This year it took place on January 18th. There we marched with close to 300,000 other young high school and college-age Americans who believe in the sanctity of life from the moment of conception until natural death. It is a great experience to practice our First Amendment rights of free speech and peaceful assembly.
Both clubs focus on what is going on in the real world and how students can be active in shaping the world around them. These clubs show how students should be more involved in the real world and notice how effective these situations are.It is very important to show how students are involved in the world around us. As a result, these clubs are a great way to be active in the FHA community.
By Joanne Centeno '21
Last week, I was given the opportunity to sit down and interview the newest staff member of Fontbonne Hall Academy. The Folio would like to extend a great big welcome to Mr. Joseph Principato.
Joining us mid-year as a Science Teacher, Mr. Principato is eager to jump right in and make sure we are all prepared for our exams as well as for our futures. He attended Xaverian High School and played on the football and baseball team. He also was a part of Xaverian’s jazz band. Mr. Principato attended Cornell, where he studied biology and nutrition. He shared that members of his family have attended Fontbonne in the past, so he is confident that this will be a great fit for him. While this is his first official teaching position, he has extensive training as a successful science tutor for many high school students prior to joining the Bonnie Family.
After the interview was finished, I realized I neglected to ask Mr. Principato which of Fontbonne many clubs piqued his interest. He said he would like to take over the Engineering club some point in the future... So, Mr. Principato, if you are reading this, please let The Folio know what your other interests and hobbies are so we can match you with a club to support. Personally speaking, The Folio (or Drama) is always a great place to stop by. The doors are always open.
Good luck to you, Mr. Principato. The Folio Staff is glad you are here!
By Joanne Centeno ‘21
Hopefully, all you Bonnies out there know about the growing Fontbonne Drama Club. If you don’t, let me take this opportunity to let you know that we have an AMAZING Drama Club that is under the direction and guidance of our own Mrs. Glasser. At Fontbonne’s welcome night in September, more than twenty-five students signed up, adding to the current twenty plus members. That jump in enrollment is adding to the enthusiastic buzz around campus for the upcoming spring show, Hairspray.
Mrs. Glasser arranged for a workshop by the Brooklyn College Theater Department in order to assist the already-existing as well as newly-joining student talent. Of the six workshops offered, she requested that each Drama Club member come to at least two of them. This experience allowed all the ladies to learn how to express themselves on stage and gain more confidence. Two of the six workshops were offered as club trip to Brooklyn College, while the remaining four were held at Fontbonne.
At each workshop, exercises were given in topics ranging from facial expression, voice projection, storytelling, dance and movement, and of course, acting. Each session transitioned basic instruction to actual performance technique aimed at enhancing our already amazing varieties of club talent. Mrs. Glasser’s innovative mandate of participating in these workshops will no doubt escalate the quality of our school drama club. These small steps will pave the way for big strides. Make sure you come to see Fontbonne’s production of Hairspray this spring!
Look out, Broadway! There are Bonnies on the rise.
By Lilla Catanzaro '19
Mr. Joseph Geraci is the new director of development at Fontbonne Hall Academy. He is responsible for raising money for the school and helping to engage donors, while helping to improve and expand the reputation of the institution in order to not only raise money, but to help expand enrollment.
His goal from an early age was to attend law school and become an attorney. However, when it came time to apply for law school, his dad said he could not help pay. Unfortunately, since he lived at home, he was not eligible for student loans, forcing him to find another path. Yes, this was upsetting, but Mr. Geraci himself says, “people always change career paths.”
He began his career in business. One of his previous bosses said he was a great communicator, so his new hope and dream were to become a litigator. His boss suggested he move to another area in the academic world- somewhere that dealt with development or student affairs. He chose development. He has the ability to communicate a clear message to people, engage them, and convince them about his thoughts and ideas.
Mr. Geraci attended St. John’s University to receive his undergraduate degree. He later received his Master’s degree at Adelphi University, majoring in speech communication and minoring in concentration in business administration. Once he earned his degree, he started a job at St. John’s University, working in the development office. Mr. Geraci then became the director of alumni administrations at Adelphi University. He created a program that brought alumni back to the university, which Mr. Geraci describes as “one of my most satisfying achievements.”
He also spent some time working at Holy Trinity High School, where he was in charge of alumni administrations, fundraising, and communications. Recently, he started a capital campaign at a school for children with autism, raising three million dollars. After working at a few different schools, Mr. Geraci decided to work at Fontbonne because we are a “faith-based organization.” As a Catholic, he is also very involved with his own parish in Long Island. He was struck by Fontbonne’s administration and its constant teachings of the church that follows the basis of education.
Mr. Geraci has many goals for his time here at Fontbonne. He plans to increase our annual fund, raise money for various renovation projects, expand and create new programs, and bring more alumni and friends of the school back into the life of the institution. He will do all of this with the support and encouragement from his wonderful colleagues and the administration. They all truly understand the importance of the need to fundraise, in order to keep this school financially secure and prepared to teach many more generations of young women who will attend in the future.
When asked about Fontbonne, he stated, “This is an amazing school with an incredible history of successful alumni and everyone wants to be part of a winner.” He saw the opportunity to come here and do great work after meeting with the Principal, Assistant Principal, and Director of Alumni Administration. He thought they were all on the same page with their priorities, values, and ideas on how to advance the school. He felt like this was the perfect place for him and he hopes to learn and grow from this experience.