St. Joseph’s Academy hosted Senior Grandparents Week during parts of the last week of November and first week of December. Grandparents of seniors joined their granddaughters on a designated day for lunch in the Mother Alice Hall Community Room, then enjoyed tours of campus and quality time with family.
Senior Grandparents Week is sponsored each year by the SJA Mission Advancement Office. Grandparents Day for SJA freshmen will be celebrated during the spring semester.
Cydney Morris, assistant director of SJA’s Mission Advancement office, coordinated the weeklong event. “After a year-and-a-half without many visitors on campus, SJA was thrilled to welcome senior grandparents for lunch with their granddaughters over the course of five days,” she said. “Grandparents were beaming as they saw their granddaughters come into the room. It was such a sweet time for the families to share. Students were proud to show off their school and talk about what is happening as they wrap their time at SJA. Their grandparents were happy to see and hear it all.”
Ava Welborn welcomed her grandparents, Pam Rhodes and Laura and Paul Welborn. The day had special meaning to the family. “Freshman year, my grandfather, who has since passed, was very ill, and we were not able to walk around the campus,” she said. “This year, I was able to show them my school, which they’ve been really curious about seeing. We visited my choir classroom and listened to one of the classes practice for the concert, which resulted in tears shed by my grandparents. They really enjoyed seeing the environment SJA provides for me.”
Alyssa LeBlanc said Senior Grandparents Day with her grandparents, Donnie and Mark LeBlanc, was a meaningful experience. Spending time together on campus made for a great day, LeBlanc said. “Since COVID, getting to spend time with them has not been something we have done,” she said. “Being with them and bringing them around campus just made me happy. Seeing them in a safe and protected way at school was just really special. They love all of the opportunities I have and that I have people around me who want me to succeed. My grandpa loves to brag all about SJA, especially how everyone treated me after my mom passed away. My grandparents take every opportunity to come to SJA because of the welcoming atmosphere and opportunities both spiritually and academically.”
Ashlyn Neucere said she truly enjoyed celebrating Senior Grandparents Day with her grandfather, Linton Naquin, and showing him the school her mother, Kim Naquin Neucere ’89, attended. “I just enjoy talking with my pappy,” she said. “Life is so crazy and hectic, we never get to chat one on one. I loved giving him a tour of the school so he can see what my day-to-day life looks like. He enjoyed seeing how much the campus has grown since my mom was here.”
Helping to make the celebration a success were SAGE Dining Services, members of the Mission Advancement staff, Mothers’ Club volunteers Earlett Buckley and DeNea Riche and Alumnae Association Board volunteers Dyra Hughes, Kate Cook and Darby Baronet.
To view the photo gallery, click here.
Mindy Brodhead Averitt
Photos courtesy of Cydney Morris