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Meet our Students of the Month

May 2017

Hi! My name is Alli Lanzotti and I am a senior here at Sacred Heart-Griffin. Throughout my time at SHG I have been a Student Ambassador, a Freshman Focus Leader, a Freshman Orientation Leader, a tutor in the Learning Lab, an office runner, and I have been involved in many clubs. I have had the chance to be a leader for lots of retreats, as well! I am on High Honor Roll, and I am a member of National Honor Society and Spanish National Honor Society. I have played volleyball all four years of high school, and I was a JV captain my sophomore year and a Varsity captain this year. I have received the Academic All-Conference award every year, and this year I received the All-Conference award. One of the best parts of SHG for me has been all of the service opportunities. My junior year I was involved in the Theology III Service Class, which was amazing for me because I got to help little kids at Harvard Park Elementary School. I also went on a mission trip called JOSHUA this past summer, and it completely changed my outlook on life and helping others. Due to the fact that I was able to partake in these special opportunities, I have realized that I want to help others and make people happy, so I have decided to go to the University of Dayton on a pre-med track (go flyers!!). My overall favorite thing about SHG is the sense of belonging everyone feels here. I have made so many friends and met so many great people throughout my time here. It has been the best four years of my life so far, and I have truly loved my time as a Cyclone.

Hi! My name is Claire Esslinger and I am a junior at Sacred Heart Griffin. At SHG, I am involved in various activities. I have played volleyball as a middle hitter for 3 years. I love how our volleyball team is so close and is positive to be around. I also participate in many clubs. Currently, I am a member of Student Ambassadors, Our Lady of Nazareth, Brave Club, Student Council, Freshman Focus, and National Honor Society. I am also a Eucharistic minister at all school masses. My favorite part of SHG is the feeling of community. I have formed strong relationships with my classmates and teachers at SHG. The bonds I have made here are truly unique and I feel blessed to have them. I am so grateful for the opportunity SHG has allowed me to grow as a person. Go Cycs!

Hi! My name is Isley Hunter and I am a Sophomore. I am apart of the cheerleading team here at SHG. In my freetime I enjoy spending time with my family and friends, I also like volunteer at my church every Sunday and help with the children. My favorite part about SHG is the welcoming environment. Everyone tries their hardest to make everyone feel comfortable, it’s like one big family! Coming to SHG has taught me to value my faith, friends, family, and my education, I am very blessed to attend SHG.

Hi, my name is Reid Taylor, and I am a freshman here at Sacred Heart-Griffin. Becoming a part of the SHG family was exciting. I grew up in a big family with most of them attending this school. I enjoy participating in extracurriculars such as the golf team, basketball team, Student Council, Student Ambassadors, Our Lady of Nazareth, and German Club. Outside of school, I like to play basketball and golf with my friends. My experience at SHG has been great so far, and I am looking forward to becoming a sophomore next year. The thing I like most about SHG is its friendly atmosphere. I feel welcomed by every teacher and student, and I can go to anyone to ask for help. I am proud to call myself a Cyclone.


April 2017

Hi! My name is Annie Urbance and I am a senior here at Sacred Heart-Griffin. At SHG, I am a Student Ambassador, Fresh Focus leader, office runner, FIRE club member, and Our Lady of Nazareth club member. In addition, I have participated in volleyball all four years of my high school career. While on the volleyball team, I was a team captain my senior year, as well as received All Conference and Academic All Conference both my junior and senior year. The most special part of SHG volleyball for me is the camaraderie and sisterhood that I have with my teammates. Furthermore, I have played on two club teams throughout my volleyball career, one of which was H2 Volleyball Club out of St. Louis. As you can probably tell, volleyball is very important to me and something I hold very dear to my heart. This competitive nature of mine definitely started at a very young age for me, probably due to the fact that I have grown up around all boys my entire life. Nevertheless, another interest of mine would have to be spending time with my friends and family any chance I get. As for SHG, the opportunities to truly live out my faith are amazing, for example, getting to attend both Kairos and JOSHUA. Also, the academics here at SHG have really prepared me for the next level. Lastly, I would have to say what I like most about SHG would have to be the family atmosphere and how it can truly make you feel so welcome and comfortable from the moment you walk through the doors. I know that family feeling will remain with me when I walk out of these doors.

My name is Grace McDonald and I am a Junior at SHG.  I am involved in cross country, track, Brave Club, Student Ambassadors, OLN, French Club, WYSE, and Science Olympiad.  My favorite part about SHG is the people.  Throughout my years at SHG, I have built so many great relationships and met so many kind people.  The friendships I have made here have helped me become a better person and learn so much about myself.  I am so glad that I have had the opportunity to attend SHG.

Hello! My name is Gillian Blair and I am a Sophomore here at SHG. The best part of SHG is all the academic opportunities the school presents along with the amazing teachers and staff. In addition to these opportunities, there are many clubs and sports here for people to join. At SHG, I’m in German Club, Brave Club, Student Ambassadors, and I am on High Honor Roll. I am also on the SHG Girl’s Swim team, and to me it is like a little family that is filled with a lot of love and support for one another. In my free time, I love to hang out with my friends and family. The students that go to SHG are filled with a lot of spirit and faith, which has made attending SHG a fun and easy experience. I am extremely blessed to be able to go to this school.

Hi, my name is Clare Becker and I am currently a Freshman. This is my first year attending private school! Personally, I am in many activities inside and outside of school. In school activities, I participate in are Cross Country/Track, Science Olympiad, Student Ambassador, OP Teen, Key Club, and just recently Student Council. Some of my favorite activities outside of school are Sangamon Valley Youth Symphony (SVYS) ,where I am principal oboe, Girl Scouts, youth group, and I love to play with my dog Cora. For the past three quarters I have been on honor roll, which is pretty exciting. Lastly, my favorite thing about SHG is the daily service and prayer. In public school you don’t talk about religion, being able to do these things at school is a wonderful blessing.


March 2017

Hello, my name is Nick Sanders and I am a senior right here at SHG. Some of you may know me as “the kid who rollerblades from west”.  Rollerblading, cars, and music are my passions, and I love sharing them with all of you. I have played the piano for 9 years and will continue to play all my life. I am also incredibly hilarious. I love making people laugh because nothing is better than laughing ’till your stomach hurts! As for the school itself, SHG is absolutely wonderful. The environment is perfect, the food is sublime, and there are countless activities in which to partake. However, the people are the foundation of this establishment, the fluffy cake under the icing. Words cannot express how grateful I am to be here with such great people. I have had an amazing four years and I will miss the great times. Enjoy it while you can!

Hi! My name is Claire McGrath, and I am a Junior here at SHG. I am the third in a line of eight children who have and will be attending SHG. I have played the clarinet in band for almost four years now, and I am on high honor roll. Also, I am very excited about being able to play the clarinet in this year’s musical, “Oklahoma!” In my free time, I like to read and spend time with my family and friends. My favorite part about attending SHG is that I am able to learn and talk about my faith each day. My faith has always been a huge part of my life, and every day I am very happy to be a part of such a faith-filled community.

Hello, my name is Cece Donathan and I’m a sophomore here at SHG. At SHG, I’m in Key Club, OLN, OPT, recycling club, Spanish Club, Student Ambassadors, track, and the school musical. Outside of school I’m in the Springfield Ballet Company and local community theater. The best parts about SHG are the teachers and clubs and activities. The teachers and staff want each student here at SHG to be the best they can possibly be and never fail to help us out. Also, the school offers so many clubs and activities, there are so many to choose from. I am truly blessed to be able to go to this school.

Hello, my name is Sophie Ludolph and I am a freshman here at SHG. I am part of Key Club and have been on High Honor Roll. I play volleyball, and I am doing school soccer this spring. I love hanging out with my four younger brothers and friends. I also enjoy reading, drawing, and playing the piano. My favorite thing about SHG is how friendly and welcoming everyone is. The students are full of school spirit and the teachers are approachable and helpful. I am so proud to be a Cyclone and I am excited for my next three years here.

February 2017

Hello, my name is Andrew Johnson and I am a Senior here at Sacred Heart Griffin. I am the youngest of four siblings to graduate from SHG, along with my father. It is truly a privilege to attend Sacred Heart Griffin, as well as participating in school activities and clubs. I am on high honor roll and I participate in art club and National Art Honors Society, as well as golden palette this year. Some of the extracurricular activities that I participate in are fishing, hunting, woodworking, bowling, fly tying, and drawing. I am grateful for everything that Sacred Heart Griffin has to offer, including the relaxed and peaceful environment, as well as the friendships and bonds made between teachers and students. SHG has prepared me for my future endeavors, including going to college and furthering my education for a degree in Marine Biology.

Hello, my name is Mary Helen Healy and I am a Junior. I am very involved at SHG and enjoy participating in many different activities. I was the freshman and sophomore class president and I am currently the junior class president. I play volleyball for SHG and for the Illini Elite Volleyball club team.  I am a Student Ambassador, a member of Recycling Club, W.Y.S.E., Brave Club, FCA, Freshman Focus and French Club, am a retreat leader and I visit a Dominican Sister at the Mother House during my study hall. Last year I was also a part of the musical, Footloose! I am very excited to be a new member of National Honors Society. What I enjoy most about SHG is the atmosphere. I love how friendly everyone is and how helpful the teachers are.  What makes SHG great is the school spirit and the wonderful people!  I have had a great experience at SHG and I am extremely grateful for all of the friendships and memories I have made along the way.

Hello, my name is Darby Moore and I am a sophomore here at SHG. At SHG, I am involved in extracurriculars such as Key Club, FIRE Club, Student Council, Student Ambassadors, volleyball, and track. Outside of school, I love to spend time with friends and family, paint, and pet every dog I come into contact with. My favorite part about SHG is the aspect of community. Everyone around the school wants to see each other succeed and be the best person they can possibly be. It’s always refreshing to know that when I leave home to come to school I have an entire second family to spend the day with. I am truly blessed to be able to come to school at such a welcoming place each and every day.

Hello, my name is Camille Arisman and I am a Freshman here at SHG. I play the french horn in the school band and I am a Student Ambassador. I am proud to say that I have been on high honor roll for every quarter so far, and I hope to stay on it for the whole year. My favorite sport is soccer and I plan to play on the SHG soccer team this spring. I also enjoy reading and swimming. The best part about SHG, to me, is our faith community where everyone is welcome. I also enjoy that our school is filled with spirit and we are always ready to support our sports teams and clubs. I am very proud to be a Cyclone and I am so lucky to be a part of SHG.

January 2017

Hello, my name is Tim Deckard and I am a senior at SHG. I enjoy participating in many of the activities available at SHG. I am a captain of the boys’ soccer team, a member of the Science Olympiad team, WYSE team, and I am a member of National Honor Society. I have also served on the last two JOSHUA mission trips. I have learned countless life lessons during my time at SHG and I am very grateful for them. What I like most about SHG is the ability to grow and learn in an environment where the faculty and students care about each other. This allows the students to feel comfortable and welcomed at school.

Hi, my name is Hanna Sternitzke.  I am currently a junior here at SHG.  I am a member of many clubs including Brave Club, Diversity Team, Our Lady of Nazareth, and Recycling Club.  These clubs help keep me busy and involved here at school.  I have played soccer here at SHG since freshman year, but I have been playing the sport since I was about 5 years old.  Sophomore year I played on both the JV and varsity teams, but this year I hope to start varsity.  Sports and clubs are also a good way to meet new friends.  I have made many friends here that I love hanging out with, in and out of school.  I like SHG because it is such a good environment for learning.  All of the teachers are willing to help and want to see all of their students succeed.  I also like that I can express my faith and learn more about it each day.  Everyone at SHG is very accepting and everyone is encouraged to pursue what they are interested in.  I feel that it is such a privilege to be able to attend SHG and I really am blessed to go to such an awesome school.

Hi! My name is Emily Bland, and I am a sophomore. I am mainly involved with the music department: I take voice lessons, am a member of Encore choir, and participated in last spring’s musical, Footloose. I look forward to performing in this year’s production of Oklahoma! I am also involved with French club. Outside school, I participate in Big Brothers Big Sisters, am a member Springfield Lodge Tribe, and volunteer at Theatre in the Park. My favorite part of SHG is each student’s ability to pursue their individual interests. The environment created by students and faculty allow students to participate in activities they are passionate about without fear of judgment. This atmosphere has let me become a better person and musician. I look forward to my next two years here and what I will accomplish through SHG!

Hi, my name is Joe Esslinger and I am a freshmen here at SHG. I am a part of the football team, student council, and high honor roll. Also, in the spring I hope to be a part of the baseball team, which is my favorite sport. My favorite sports teams are the Cardinals, the Bears, the Blackhawks, and the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. In addition, I also like to ski and play pickup basketball with my friends. My favorite part about SHG is that everyone is friendly and wants to help you succeed.


December 2016

Hi! My name is Lauren Freiburg and I am a Senior here at SHG. I'm a part of many organizations here, including OPTeen and Student Ambassadors, and I serve in multiple leadership roles, such as Vice President of German club, Editor of Key Club, and Treasurer of NAHS. My favorite part of this school is the ability everyone has to express themselves and find their niche, no matter who you are or what you do. SHG over the years has completely made me who I am today. Between the amazing community and consistent service, I’m happy to say I represent SHG the best that I can!

Hi! I’m Tynan Madonia and I’m currently a junior here at SHG. I am a member of Brave Club and Spanish Club, as well as Science Olympiad. I have been on the swim team for all three years of high school.  When I’m not busy with my school related activities, I love spending time with friends and family. My favorite part about SHG is the feeling of support and acceptance when you walk through the front doors. The teachers are amazing and the students are so supportive of one another. The teachers always push me to do my best. SHG has given me many opportunities that I am extremely grateful for.

Hello, my name is Jake Wagoner, and I am a sophomore at Sacred Heart-Griffin. I ran varsity cross country this past fall, and I was a part of the Junior Varsity Academic Team. I have been active in many clubs at SHG, such as choir, Christmas club, Science Olympiad, and I participated in the school musical last year and look forward to the upcoming school musical. The greatest part of SHG is the comaradarie of the students and faculty, which is unparalleled to anywhere else. Another benefit at SHG is the shared faith, service and academic goals of the student body and staff. Whenever a student needs help, a friend or teacher is always willing to help the student succeed. I have thoroughly enjoyed my experiences at SHG, and I look forward to the many new challenges that SHG has to offer.

Hi, my name is Rachel Ducaji, and I am a freshman here at SHG. I am a part of the Academic Team, OP Teen, Student Ambassadors, Science Olympiad and High Honor Roll. I take voice lessons and I am looking forward to participating in the Spring musical. My favorite part about SHG is the faith-filled, friendly community where people reach out to help one another. I am looking forward to all the fun things to come in the next several years here.

November 2016

My name is Ashleigh Yarnik, and I am a senior here at Sacred Heart-Griffin.  I have the privilege of being Student Body President, as well as being a member of NHS, Spanish NHS, Spanish Club, Recycling Club, Student Ambassadors, Science Olympiad, and the tennis team.  Not to mention SHG's newest and most profound club- Christmas Club!  I have had a wonderful last few years at SHG, and I am extremely thankful for all of the progress, friendships, and memories I have made along the way.  I love the sense of community our school exhibits on a daily basis and will miss its friendly atmosphere next year.  SHG will forever be a second home to me!

Hi! My name is Elise Antonacci, and I am currently a junior here at SHG. During my time, I am involved in many organizations that the school has to offer, such as Student Ambassadors, Spanish Club, Academic Team, Our Lady of Nazareth, Science Olympiad, and Freshman Focus. I enjoy all of these activities, but my favorite part about SHG is the feeling of family I get when I walk through the door. No matter where I am in the school, I know someone and someone knows me. Not only do I love the sense of family, but the whole school is so supportive of all types of people, no matter if you are in sports, clubs or choir, which I absolutely love. I have nothing but excitement for what I will achieve at SHG in my last two years here.

Hello! My name is Grace Conlon, and I am currently a sophomore here at Sacred Heart Griffin. I participate in many school activities such as OPTeen, Key Club, Student Ambassadors, the school musical, French Club, Our Ladies of Nazareth, and I run cross country. I am so happy that SHG gives me so many opportunities academically, spiritually, and activity wise. I also love the friendly, faith-filled atmosphere around the halls. My experience at SHG so far has been absolutely wonderful! I love being able to talk about my faith in an academic environment. Have a great rest of the year cyclones!

My name is Joseph Rapacz, and I am a freshman at SHG. I have been in band for three years and I enjoy it. I also participated in freshman football this year and I look forward to playing again next year. I like SHG because of how welcoming the school is to any student. Students at SHG are always there for the freshman if they need help. Another thing I like about SHG is that they have something for everyone. They have lots of clubs and lots of sports for all kinds of different people.

October 2016

Hi, I am Tom Tang. As a senior at SHG, I love the Cyclones so much. SHG is a place that not only offers students all kinds of activities and programs, but also teaches students how to communicate with each other and deal with problems together. Students here experience wonderful life and have a deep relationship with everyone else. My personal interest at SHG is taking part in some kind of competition.

Hi! My name is Isabella Farris and I am currently a Junior here at SHG. I participate in various clubs such as Student Ambassadors, BRAVE Club, Spanish Club, SEA, and I am on the OP Teen Board. I have been on the swim team all three years of high school and I started throwing shot put and discus for track last year. When I'm not at school or participating sports, I like spending time with my family, especially with my dogs. The thing that I like most about Sacred Heart Griffin is the friendly atmosphere and how welcoming everyone is here.

Hello! My name is Kayla Seck, and I am currently a sophomore here at SHG.  During my time here, I have been involved in many clubs and extracurricular activities that SHG has to offer such as Key Club, Student Ambassadors, and SHG Volleyball. Perhaps what I love most about SHG is the fun and inviting atmosphere it has to offer. I experience this sense of family and community on a daily basis.  With this being said, although this school year has just begun, I have nothing but high hopes for the rest of my sophomore year and for the rest of my time here as a whole!

Hi, my name is Grant Collins and I am currently a freshman at SHG. I feel fortunate to attend this school and look forward to my next three years here. I enjoy all of my subjects, but my favorites are Theology and Language Arts. This fall, I intend to play for the basketball team. I have played the sport of basketball for many years and I love it! In the future, I plan to attend college and have a career in a field that is sports-related, preferably one that focuses on basketball. In my free time, I enjoy playing many different sports, and spending time with my friends and family.