Monthly Archives

February 2020


By OLMA Headlines

When it comes to preparing for interviews with colleges and potential employers, practice makes perfect for OLMA juniors.  Dressed for success and with resumes in hand, students participated in Mock Interview Day. They had two interviews each and received feedback in between provided by real-world Human Resources and College Admissions professionals.  Before Mock Interview Day, students participated in resume-writing and interview-skills workshops.  

“This is one of a series of programs that we offer to prepare students for college and beyond,” says Melissa Szawlewicz, Guidance Counselor.  “These same students will give their career interests a test drive in a few weeks as part of our Job Shadow Program. It’s all about preparation and building self-confidence.  Year after year, graduates return and share stories of how these activities helped them succeed.” 

Our Lady of Mercy Academy is a Catholic, accredited, college preparatory school for young women located in Newfield, NJ.  OLMA empowers young women to lead a world of change, realize their dreams and reach their full potential. OLMA provides challenging academics and diverse extracurricular programs in an environment that promotes faith, sisterhood, achievement, leadership, and service.  In 1962, the Daughters of Our Lady of Mercy established OLMA as South Jersey’s all-girls Catholic high school. For more information, visit OLMANJ.ORG or call (856) 697-2008.  

Top Photo Caption: A group of OLMA juniors gathers for a quick photo just before their first interviews. Pictured from left to right are Maria Pia DiFranco, Bridgeton; Adrianna Dodge, Sewell; Layla Colon, Bridgeton; Caroline Bernhardt, Buena; Katherine Decker, East Greenwich; Rachel Foster, Clayton; Marielle Fortunato, Sewell; Adriana Fricano, Newfield; and Chloe Abo, Egg Harbor Township.

Lisa Trabuchi, a physical therapist with Bayada, interviews Trinity Miskelly, Millville.
Keivon Hemming from Ramapo College interviews HannahMcCardell, Mays Landing.
Deb Murphy, a paralegal with Vertex, Inc., interviews Aliana Melendez, Galloway.
OLMA juniors (l to r), Jaiden Harris, Lindenwold; Madison Hurley, Williamstown; and Ava Keyser, Sewell; on their way to their first interviews of the day.

CLICK HERE to see an article that ran in The Daily Journal newspaper.

OLMA freshman, Isabella Rossi

Student Spotlight: Meet Isabella Rossi, Class of 2023

By OLMA Headlines

Move over, Katie Ledecky and Michael Phelps! Isabella “Izzy” Rossi is coming your way! This OLMA freshman started competitive swimming when she was just six years old. Not only is she still at it, but Izzy is Junior Olympic material. This weekend, Izzy will travel to York, PA, where she will compete in the Junior Olympic Mid-Atlantic USA Swimming competition. Izzy swims Friday through Sunday and will compete in six individual events and three relay races. She will represent her club team, the EHT Sea Hawks. 

Izzy is as humble as they come, but anyone who knows anything about this competition understands how challenging it is to qualify. “It’s a pretty big deal,” said Izzy, “but my favorite part is being with my best friends and seeing swimmers from other teams that I’ve gotten to know over the years. It’s a lot of fun.” Izzy is one to watch, and she is hoping to make the finals in as many events as possible. 

Izzy was also a stand-out swimmer for OLMA this year, breaking numerous school records. “I loved bonding with the other girls this season,” she said. “I really enjoyed being part of the team.” While she has three more years to go, Izzy has her sights set on swimming competitively in college. 
While it’s too soon to tell where she will go, Izzy says that she is grateful to OLMA for preparing her. “High school was a big shift for me from middle school,” she said. “I have lots of homework and tests every week now, so I have to stay on top of things. It’s hard, but I know it will help me in the long run.” 

Izzy came to OLMA from Assumption Regional School in Galloway. “I visited a few different schools but knew as soon as I shadowed that OLMA was the right place for me,” said Izzy. “The environment here is unique and welcoming. I’ve made so many new friends and love it here.” 

We are glad you chose us, Izzy. Congratulations on making the Junior Olympics. We will be cheering for you! 

Student Spotlight: Meet Delaney Shur, Class of 2023

By OLMA Headlines

OLMA freshman, Delaney Shur, is a young woman who craves a challenge even if it means learning to sign a song for South Jersey Chorus virtually overnight. As part of the chorus, Delaney already knew how to sing the song, but signing it was something else altogether. It turns out that she was a victim of her own success. 

“I taught myself how to sign when I started working at Jilly’s on the Ocean City Boardwalk,” said Delaney. “We had a lot of deaf customers, and I wanted to be able to communicate with them. I decided to give American Sign Language a try. I liked it and developed a passion for the language. In my spare time, I started practicing with all kinds of things.” 

Most recently, Delaney thought it would be fun to learn to sign part of a song she was working on with South Jersey Chorus. “I got excited about it and showed the director,” she said. “The next thing I knew, she was asking me if I could learn two full verses by the next day.” Not one to walk away from a challenge, Delaney did not disappoint. She worked through the night and sang and signed beautifully at the performance the following evening. (See video clip at the end of this story.)

Delaney has a similar passion for academics and theater. She is one of the Class of 2023 Merit Scholarship recipients and puts her academics first. While Delaney enjoys all of her classes, Literature is her favorite. “Lit is the best hands down,” she said. “Mr. J. leads the best discussions and encourages us to share our perspectives and opinions. Plus, he’s hilarious and teaches in a way that keeps us all interested.”

On stage, Delaney is a natural. She was part of the cast of the OLMA-PREP production of The Addams Family last fall. She just auditioned for a spot in the Levoy Theatre’s production of Frozen Jr. This summer, Delaney will be attending the Eagle Theater Conservatory and play a role in Once on the Sidelines

Self-expression is important to Delaney. “One of the things I love most about OLMA is the ability to be yourself,” she said. “There are lots of opportunities for us to try new things and even create them. I just worked with Mrs. Coyle to start a Film Making Club. “

Before joining OLMA, Delaney attended St. Joseph’s Regional School in Somers Point. “I was the only one from my class to choose OLMA that year, but I didn’t care,” she said. “I’m not the kind of kid who does things just because my friends do, and coming to OLMA was the best decision I ever made. I can’t imagine being anywhere else.”

As the school year makes its way toward spring, Delaney is excited about her first Mini-Mester course. “I’m going to New Orleans and cannot wait,” she said. “The culture is diverse and the city so historical. We’re going on a graveyard tour.” 

We are excited for you too and can’t wait to hear all about it. Have a blast, Delaney!

Student Spotlight: Meet Isabella Guerrero, Class of 2021

By OLMA Headlines

If ever there was a young woman eager to take on the world, it’s Isabella Guerrero. This OLMA junior just returned from a three-week Mini-Mester course in Spain. Better known as the Spain Exchange, this trip is a life changer. Students arrived in Madrid shortly after the New Year and matched with students from an area Augustinian school. Then the immersion begins. While most are nervous when heading over, they rarely want to leave when the time comes to go home.

That was certainly the case for Isabella, who was bitten by the travel bug at an early age. While a Mini-Mester course in Canada during her freshmen year was her only other experience out of the country, she is eager to fill up her passport. “Travel is a huge passion of mine,” she said. “I want to see the world and plan on attending a college that offers me the opportunity to study abroad.”

In terms of her most recent travel experience, Isabella said that her favorite part was exploring San Lorenzo, the town where the school is. “It was so close that we could walk through the town during breaks and lunch,” she said. “Unlike here where you need a car to get almost anywhere, the city is within walking distance. I’m hoping to visit again this summer.” (In the meantime, you can check out the Spain Exchange highlights video she made below.)

Another passion for Isabella is film. “It sounds silly, but when I was younger, and the Harry Potter movies were out, I could not stop watching them,” said Isabella. “The special effects and cinematography were so cool. I started watching all of the behind-the-scenes and the-making-of shows to learn more. I knew then that film making was what I wanted to do.” With that in mind, it should come as no surprise that Isabella has her sights set on attending school in California. “I love it there, and if you want to make films, it’s where you need to be,” she said. “I visited California as part of last year’s Mini-Mester course and absolutely loved it. While I don’t want to rush high school, I cannot wait to be independent and live on my own.”
Isabella and her family, including her younger sister, Julianna, who will be an OLMA freshman in the fall live in Williamstown.

OLMA was recommended to Isabella by her cousins, who attended St. Augustine Prep. “They kept telling me to check it out, so I did and fell in love,” she said. “The environment at OLMA is so comfortable that it’s easy to find yourself. No one judges you or stands in your way.” Isabella said that her trip to Spain made her realize how lucky she is to go to an all-girls school like OLMA. “Going to a coed school in Spain for three weeks made me realize just how different, in a good way, things are at OLMA.”

Now that she is back from Spain, Isabella is looking forward to the start of the spring sports season. “I am a lacrosse player and can’t wait to get back out there,” she said. “I danced for 13 years before high school and then gave it up to try something new. I like volleyball too, but lacrosse is my sport.” We will see you out on the field, Isabella, and on the big screen one day too.