Staff at St. Joe

Mary Dill, Editor-in-Chief

Each year, as the freshman class and our new teachers become acquainted with the school, students and staff find new, unique ways to bond within the community. After four years here, seniors have seen these bonds first hand, and are continually inspired by them. 

“There’s just something different here,” Senior Caroline Weber said. “I feel like we’re all a family.”

Many staff members would agree. From lunch in Zahner lounge, to enthusiastic participation in schoolwide events, the special bond among staff members is clear, compassionate, and caring within the St. Joe community. 

This year, St. Joe welcomed 13 new staff members, and of course, a new freshman class. St. Joe continuously works to foster an environment of unity, and open arms, specifically as the new staff builds relationships here. The idea of “Not I, but We” is very present in the space. 

Among the new faculty at St. Joe is Dr. Julia Wilkins Kohrmann, the director of Diversity, Culture, and Climate. Located on the ground floor of the Academy halls with the Senior class, she has truly gotten a feel for the environment here. 

“Really and truly, so many people have been so kind and welcoming,” she said. 

Dr. Wilkins Kohrmann also gave a special shout out to her fellow hallmates, the IT Department, and their efforts to “design office spaces, figure out logistics, and make the best cup of coffee on campus!” 

In addition to new staff members, staff veterans can attest to the incredible feeling of unity fostered in the hallways. 

Theology teacher Mrs. Sarah Bou feels a bond with her fellow faculty and staff members.

“We celebrate each other’s successes and birthdays.” she said. “We laugh together, and we do our very best to make sure our work, especially when we disagree, doesn’t impact our personal relationships.” 

Without a doubt, students at St. Joe find special ways to bond with each other, the staff, and the values at the Academy. Often, students look for ways to give back through service, donations, or in the case of  Ms. Hailey Meersman, her career! 

Ms. Meersman is a St. Joe alumna, math teacher, and Spirit club moderator for the Academy. Having only taught for two years, she shared how COVID-19 affected her opportunity to bond, and encouraged her to get more involved this year. 

“Kairos was a really good chance to bond with a couple of my coworkers who also chaperoned. This year, I joined the staff fantasy football league, and while I don’t know anything about football, it’s given me the chance to get to know my coworkers better and have a fun competition.” she said. 

For many students, including Margaret Sommers, “the teachers and staff are one of the best things about St. Joe. I love watching them bond with each other, and us as students. It’s an incredible community that I’m happy to be a part of,” she said.