Villanova welcomes prospective Grade 8 students at open house

 

 

Villanova principal Pat Hickson welcomes Grade 8 students and parents to the school Jan. 7.

Villanova principal Pat Hickson welcomes Grade 8 students and parents to the school Jan. 7.

By Ron Giofu

 

St. Thomas of Villanova Secondary School rolled out the welcome mat for students from feeder schools and non-feeder schools alike last Thursday night.

The school’s Grade 8 open house last Thursday night featured a packed theatre to hear principal Pat Hickson and members of the school community speak on the Catholic secondary school. The open house also saw prospective students and their parents and guardians tour the building and get a first-hand look at the programs being offered at Villanova.

Hickson joked this year’s Grade 8 open house was a stark contrast to last year’s, as the 2015 event featured a snowstorm so bad it caused a door to be blown open on the roof which caused snow to start falling on the theatre’s stage.

ulia Radigan holds a tarantula that is part of St. Thomas of Villanova Secondary School’s “living lab.” 

ulia Radigan holds a tarantula that is part of St. Thomas of Villanova Secondary School’s “living lab.”

Transitioning into Villanova is simply a case of moving from a smaller building to a larger building, he added, stating they would still maintain the same Catholic education that students are currently receiving at their feeder schools.

“Metaphorically, it’s like transferring from the kids’ table to the adults’ table,” he said.

For prospective students from non-feeder schools, Hickson said Villanova is not trying to convert anyone but welcomes those students as well.

Hickson told the audience that Villanova students regularly test very well in provincial testing and compare favorably to other high schools in the region. In terms of extracurricular activities and sports, he said Villanova offers teams in just about every OFSAA-sanctioned sport.

Curling team members Jacob Ruthven, Matteo Desando and Dylan Bernardon  demonstrate their sport in one of the school’s hallways.

Curling team members Jacob Ruthven, Matteo Desando and Dylan Bernardon
demonstrate their sport in one of the school’s hallways.

“We have something for everyone,” he said. “We have diverse programs.”

Keegan Sloan, the student council prime minister, touted the advantages of getting involved within the school. She said she has been involved in student council for four years and believes it has given her substantial benefits compared to if she hadn’t joined.

“I can honestly say high school became 100 times better since I joined,” said Sloan. “The spirit it brings to the whole community is great.”

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