Advisories wrap up year with giving


Mitchell Hopkins

Juniors Erin Welsh and Tim Yantz, sophomore Iain Olsen, and freshman Drew Forthman (left to right) wrap presents for the Adopt-a-Family program in religion teacher Joseph Gallen’s advisory. Gallen’s advisory gave clothes, toys and food to their adopted family.

With the Thanksgiving Food Drive and the Adopt-a-Family and Adopt-a-Senior programs, advisories are working together to support the less fortunate this holiday season. With the adoption programs, advisories sponsor a family or an elderly person in need and give them gifts during the holidays.

“We’re part of a community where everyone supports each other,” social studies teacher Jacob Hollin said. “A lot of school spirit comes from helping each other.”

Hollin is the moderator for the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, which sponsored the Adopt-a-Family program last year. Hollin wants to help bring the school together as a community, something that he believes is facilitated by service.

“I want the culture around here to be about serving others, joy, [and having] high energy,” Hollin said. “[It’s] just about making it a better school.”

Hollin’s advisory also participates in service-related activities outside of the holiday season. They have gone to the Sharing Table soup kitchen in Edgewood as a group and will be going again around Easter.

“It’s just about doing fun things,” Hollin said.

English teacher Christine Zurkowski thinks that the motivation to give comes from the students themselves.

“[We] need students to motivate [each other] and rally for [giving],” Zurkowski said. “Seniors [should] take that role.”

According to math teacher Sean Connolly, who is in his second year at JC, the entire community does a great job of giving back and doing service oriented activities.

“Being a perfectionist, [I think that one] can always do more,” Connolly said. “But the spirit that I’ve seen is phenomenal.”

Connolly’s advisory participated in the Thanksgiving Food Drive and is partnering with STEM Coordinator Jessica Limmer’s advisory for the Adopt-a-Senior Program.

“We do our best,” senior Juan Cajigas, a member of Connolly’s advisory, said. “I’m very proud of the [JC] community and when people give out the kindness of their hearts.”

According to religion teacher Joseph Gallen, this year is the best year his advisory has had in terms of community service.

“The level of participation is really good in terms of willingness to [give] and generosity,” Gallen said.

Sophomore Iain Olsen, a member of Gallen’s advisory, is proud of the service his advisory has done for the family they adopted.

“We got [our family] food, shampoo, clothes, and toys,” Olsen said. “It just makes you feel really happy that we’re helping people out to have a happy Christmas.”

Angela DeCarlo is the Stories Chief for The Patriot and