Outstanding Seniors Recognized at Awards Ceremony


Meghan Yakel, Staff Writer, Advanced Journalism

The annual senior awards ceremony was held  Thursday, May 17, for the class of 2018. Multiple academic, athletic,and service-focused seniors received awards from a variety of visitors, teachers and staff members.

“I am impressed by the high level achievement of our students and wish there was a way we could celebrate every student because every student is important,” said Principal Patrick Browne. “Ms. Bain and Mrs. Sidon are truly impressive and because of their commitment the program ran very smoothly.” 

The ceremony started off with a welcome from Mr. Browne and prayer from student body president Grant Noble.

The first awards presented were the military appointments with the flag presentation by the Tony Smith family, whose NDA son Jarrett is serving in the military. Andrew Gruesen was recognized for his Air Force Academy appointment and three others–Ben Lelinski (Army Reserve), Nate Smith (Navy) and Ian Spaulding (Coast Guard)–joined Gruesen on the stage as seniors committed to military service.

“The Air Force Academy scholarship is presented to someone who excels in academics, athletics and service. Those appointed receive a four-year, full-ride scholarship,” said the Air Force Academy representative when bringing Gruesen to the stage.

“I was very surprised and very grateful. It was just an extremely humbling situation all around,” said Peighton Milton, who received the American Legion Athletic Award alongside Matthew Raider.

Katherine VanDenHeuvel received the Nolan Kujava Memorial Scholarship. This award is in memory of a former student, Nolan Kujava, who was very involved in the arts. He passed away in a car accident his senior year of high school.

“I was really touched by the Nolan Kujava Award.  I walk by the plaque every day on the way to school and on the way home, and I think about the deep sadness that must be felt for parents when their son or daughter passes away in an automobile accident,” said Mr. Browne.

Kathryn Stumpf, valedictorian, received the “Outstanding Senior” award for a senior that exemplifies academic success, athletic success and kindness. Members of the senior class vote for the recipient.

“As Mr. Browne was announcing it, I was talking to my friend about who I thought would win, and then my name was called. It was exciting and definitely an honor to be given this award by my classmates. I’m so thankful for all the friendships and memories I’ve made over the past four years, and I think the outstanding senior award is a great testament to all those meaningful relationships,” said Stumph.


A complete list of AWARD WINNERS is included below.


WIAA Scholar Athlete Andrew Gruesen
WIAA Scholar Athlete Elizabeth Opichka
Dr. Gerald J. Mortell, Sr. Oratory Award (Memorial) Eric Weycker
The US Marine Corps Scholastic Excellence Elizabeth Tressler
US Marine Corps Distinguished Athlete John Allen
US Marine Corps Semper Fidelis Band Award Jennifer Cluckey
The Louis Armstrong Jazz Award Jack Flis
The Woody Herman Jazz Award Emily Seidl
John Philip Sousa Award Katherine Coyle
Kellert Memorial Scholarship Danielle Lippert
SMART Family Foundation Scholarship Kaycee Gierczak
Ashley Laskowski
NDA Journalism Award Danielle Lippert
Clare Ravizza
The Scholarships Inc.  Distinguished Student Scholarship Samuel Schmitz
KOC JFK Award Cole Cullen
KOC Community Service Award Charlie Lemkuil
Hannah Ciriacks
NDA Service Award Lauren Welker
Our Lady of the Bay Award Christopher Kapic
Claire Sievert
VFW Citizenship Award Anastasia Brada
Kathryn M Kratz Leadership Award Katie Romes
American Legion Athletic Award Peighton Milton-
Matthew Rader
Harley & Jeanie Pacquin Scholarship Emily Seidl
Carmen Lewis
Paul Gapinski
NDA Mathematics Award Molly Gallagher
NDA Dramatics Award Nadine Druar
Nolan Kujava Memorial Scholarship Katherine VanDenHeuvel
NDA Art Award Lillian Schumacher
NDA Yearbook Award Kelsey Mullen
Outstanding Senior Award Kathryn Stumpf