Meet Laura Norton, Class of 1984

By Alumni
Do you remember reading SeventeenMagazine?  Well this OLMA alumna worked as one of its writers after earning a B.S. in Communications and Advertising/Writing from Ithaca College.  She also worked for Sassyand Allure — and was published, which is quite an honor for any young writer.
Of course, those of us who knew Laura in high school aren’t surprised at all as she was the best writer in the class.  She was also an athlete, class officer, had the lead in the OLMA/PREP school musical, and was an all-around great student and friend to all.
After five years in New York City, Laura moved back to South Jersey and started a family.  She also worked as a graphic designer at SMS Marketing.  Ten years and two kids later, Laura made a huge career shift and went back to school to earn her B.S. in Animal Science.
Today, Laura is the Lead Technician at Audubon Veterinary Associates. Already a certified veterinary technician, Laura will soon begin a certificate course in Principle Techniques of Small Animal Anesthesia, Preoperative Analgesia & Critical Patient Care.  Whew!
Laura is the proud mom of Jeffrey (20) and Lily (17…and a rising OLMA Senior).  Oh, and did we mention that she just got engaged?  As always, there’s a lot going on in Laura’s life, but she wouldn’t have it any other way.
Looking back, Laura says that her fondest memories of OLMA revolve around her friends — many of whom she sees quite often.  “I enjoyed going to an all-girls school because you could truly be yourself and focus on your work without the added stress of maintaining a certain image for boys,” she said. “I liked going to school with other girls who wanted the same things I did: success, a career, a family, to make an impact some way. There’s also no denying that OLMA prepared us for the heavy workload that college would inevitably bring. When I got to college, spending hours doing homework and studying was nothing new to me.”
Congratulations on your success and engagement, Laura.  We wish you and yours all the happiness in the world.

Meet Sally Patton, Class of 1985

By Alumni
This week’s featured alumna will soon be promoted to Chief Petty Officer (E7) in the Navy Reserve where she works as one of its top recruiters.  While a career in the Navy Reserve wasn’t on her radar in high school, she credits her time at OLMA for preparing her for the “real world” — one that’s full of unexpected changes.
“After college, I did a little bit of everything,” said Sally.  “I worked in sales at the Press of Atlantic City.  From there, I formed my own dinner theater company and later moved to Tampa, FL where I worked for theTampa Tribune and the City of Tampa.”
In 1991, her life took a very different direction with her decision to join the Navy Reserve — a role she plays well as demonstrated by a long list of awards and achievements.
As much as she loves the Navy, her favorite job is being mom to her two children, Bill and Trinity, who she is raising with her husband, Bill.
Sally moves around a lot, but is currently living in St. Petersburg, FL and stationed at MacDill Air Force Base.   If you’re ever in the area, Sally would welcome you with open arms — and may even try to recruit you!
Thank you, Sally, for making us proud and for your service to our country!

Meet Rebekah Catalana, Class of 2012

By Alumni

Four years ago, Rebekah Catalana proudly walked across OLMA’s stage to receive her high school diploma.  This year, she graduated from Cornell University with a Bachelor of Science in Hotel Administration.

She chose Cornell because its School of Hotel Administration is ranked No. 1 worldwide.  In addition to her studies, Rebekah was a member of the Women’s Rowing Team all four years.  She also served on the Board of Directors for Hotel Ezra Cornell — an organization that invites and hosts leaders in the Hospitality industry to speak at the school’s student-run conference held each year.

When asked if she felt prepared when entering college, here’s what Rebekah had to say:  “OLMA prepared me for Cornell in a number of ways, especially when it came to my behavior in a classroom,” said Rebekah.  “Although I was transitioning from a comforting, all-girls environment, I had no problem raising my hand and asking questions. I believe the combination of my OLMA and Cornell experiences will take me far.”

Rebekah is wasting no time getting there as she will soon relocate to Washington, DC where she will serve as Supply Chain Coordinator for a new Indian Barbecue Restaurant concept named Choolaah.

If you happen to be in the DC area anytime soon, be sure to stop in and say hi. Thanks for sharing your success with us, Rebekah.  Congratulations!

(Photo Caption:  Rebekah Catalana (center) on her Graduation Day from Cornell.  Also pictured are her brother, Nick, St. Augustine Prep Class of 2011, and her sister, Rachel, OLMA Class of 2004.)