On my first day at DSHA at the start of sophomore year, I walked into Mr. Lelisnki’s first-hour English class incredibly intimidated. Not because Mr. Lelinski is intimidating. He might, in fact, be the least daunting teacher at school.
Good evening, DSHA. I’m honored to speak to you today, and I first need to extend my gratitude to the many people who have brought the class of 2022 to this moment. Thank you, friends and family, particularly our parents, for everything you’ve done to support us. I would also like to thank DSHA, our excellent teachers, staff, the Sisters of the Divine Savior, and everyone who contributed to our education. Not one of us could have gotten here alone, and our successes are largely due to your generosity, patience, and support.
I served at the Congregational Home for Vocare. Congregational Home is a non-profit, faith-based continuing care retirement community which houses and cares for the elderly. Within the home, the residents range from living independently to needing assistance and therapy. Some residents walk on their own and others get around by wheelchair. Some are capable of holding conversations while others are nonverbal. Some could recall my name day by day while others saw me as a stranger each time I said “hello.” Despite all this, one thing was true for all those I worked with. Every single person, in their own unique way, was a blessing in my life. The Vocare prayer, “Teach Me to Be a Blessing,” reminded me to serve with patience and kindness, but the residents I interacted with impacted me in a way that can’t be put into words. To give you a bit of an idea, however, I will share a little bit about my time serving and how it made me feel.
During my two weeks on Vocare, I had the honor of serving at Bryant Elementary. Bryant is a small Milwaukee Public School just 10 minutes away from DSHA, and around 220 students are enrolled there. I had the joy and absolute pleasure of spending my time in the K4 room with four and five-year-olds.
Newly retired Social Studies Faculty Sue Goulee has been a warm presence in the classroom and halls of DSHA for over two decades. Always thinking of her students, she is passionate about having a positive relationship with the girls she teaches—especially her freshman students—and helping young women see the history around them. From her shoe collection to her energy in the classroom, she is a beloved teacher by many. Although Goulee retired from teaching following the end of the 2020-21 school year, she is still involved in the planning and communication areas of the Freshman Wellness Seminar program and is a substitute at DSHA.