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On Tuesday, November 19 and Thursday, November 21 in all of Mrs. Marla Palmer’s world history classes, students participated in a Historical “Speed Dating.”

In preparation, the students researched a historical figure from Ancient Greece or Rome and created a fake Facebook profile for those figures on paper. Then, during the class period, the students rotated around the room, telling others about their person and learning about other figures.


Nineteen St. Joseph’s Catholic School seniors out of a class of 102 (19%) currently meet the qualifications for the Palmetto Fellows Scholarship Early Award. The state of South Carolina changed the application process and timeline for the Palmetto Fellows program so that seniors now have until April 2010 to qualify for the Early Award. SJCS will release the names of the Early Award qualifiers in the spring of 2020 and the Late Award qualifiers in June of 2020.

Students met the Early Award requirements by maintaining the required cumulative South Carolina grade-point average and obtaining the required SAT and/or ACT score. Some seniors are still testing and may qualify for the Early Award at a later date, as well as the Late Award in June.

The Palmetto Scholarship recognizes academically talented South Carolina high school seniors and encourages these individuals to attend college in-state. Palmetto Fellows may receive scholarships of up to $6,700 during their first year of college. Sophomores, juniors and seniors may receive up to $7,500 per year.


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On Friday, November 8, SJCS middle school students were encouraged to invite a friend for a half day of classes and lunch.

A total of 47 students visited that day, and there were plenty of smiles on their faces throughout the morning and afternoon. Teachers had a lot going on that day, and both St. Joe’s students and their friends were having a lot of fun.

Thanks to all of those who made it a great day at SJCS!


SJCS sophomore Melina Norton made all-state with her performance in the Class 1A/2A/3A individual state tennis tournament.

Melina defeated Alexis DeLoach (the No. 1 player from Wade Hampton H.S. in Hampton, S.C.), 6-0, 6-1, and then defeated Ansley Cohen of Philip Simmons, 6-3, 6-2, before losing to the No. 1 seed, Bishop England’s Lily Woods.

Melina also made All-Region 1-2A, as did junior Julia Jacques. Julia was named the team’s MVP, and eighth-grader Grace Eilers was named the team’s Most Improved Player.


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This past weekend, the South Carolina Theatre Association Convention was held at Francis Marion University in Florence.

SCTA hosted the sixth annual Tech Olympics. Teams from schools across the state competed in six technical theatre events, in the areas of Lighting, Wardrobe, Stage Crew and Rigging. The events included: hanging and focusing a light, sewing a button, knot-tying, cable roll relay, wiring a cable and folding a drop.

At this year’s event, SJCS was represented by two teams: “Insert Name Here” (Sara Gushue, Emily Gushue, Ethan Montes, Isabel Moran and Helen Norton) and “The World’s Okayest Techies” (Philip Mosley, Carson Crockett, Alex Hoverath and Sarah Paguaga).

  • “The World’s Okayest Techies” placed 3rd in Cable Roll Relay
  • Sara Gushue placed 2nd in Sew a Button
  • Alex Hoverath placed 1st in Wiring a Cable
  • Philip Mosley placed 1st in Hanging and Focusing a Light (for the second year in a row?!)

Overall, for the fastest combined time in all six events, “The World’s Okayest Techies” placed 2nd in the state.

For the first year, the conference held a Broadway Lip-Sync Battle. Meghan Malone, Alice Norton, Sara Gushue, Ethan Montes and Alex Hoverath prepared a lip-sync of “Your Fault” from Into the Woods and placed 3rd.

The SJCS competition one-act, “Wait Wait … I Can Explain,” directed by Philip Mosely and Alice Norton, was acknowledged with All-Star Cast recognition given to Alex Hoverath and Sara Gushue.

St. Joe’s had three students participate in the audition and technical theatre portfolio process for S.C. college and university theatre programs. Among the 13 colleges in attendance, the students auditioning received a collective total of 19 callbacks.


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SJCS senior Ava Dobson set the girls cross country state record with her time of 16:58, leading the Knights to a second-place finish in the Class 1A/2A state meet Tuesday at the Springdale Race Course in Camden.

Ava, who signed last week with the University of North Carolina, won her third consecutive individual state championship and erased the previous record of 17:36 by Spring Valley’s Kate Niehaus in 2003.

St. Joe’s junior Caroline Linen was the state runner-up, finishing in 18:30 — the fourth-fastest time of the day among the girls. Junior Brigid Alvis finished 13th (20:32) and made all-state.

Freshman Karolina Montalvo, seventh-grader Lauren Kelly and juniors Emily Meade and Skylar Lewis also ran for the Knights, who finished second to Greer Middle College.

St. Joe’s had won 11 consecutive state championships, including nine straight in the South Carolina High School League.

Senior Brendan McTigue finished as state runner-up with a time of 16:09 and led the SJCS boys to a third-place finish.

Juniors Dylan (16:53) and Tristan McTigue (17:10) came in seventh and 12th, respectively, and also made the all-state team.

Senior Isaac Hine, junior Mark Hartig and sophomores David Branan and Lyle Jones also ran for the Knights, who had won four straight titles and six in the previous seven years.

Although both teams saw their championship streaks come to an end, it served as a reminder of just how impressive those streaks were. Congrats to both teams on yet another outstanding season!


G.P. McLeer, a 2006 SJCS graduate and a member of the St. Joe’s school board, has been elected mayor of Fountain Inn.

G.P. defeated incumbent Mayor Sam Lee 57% to about 43%, according to the unofficial Greenville County election results, as reported by The Greenville News.

“St. Joseph’s provided me with an environment where I could strengthen the leadership, perseverance, and people skills that prepared me for my run for mayor,” G.P. said. “The trusting relationship between the school and students empowered all of us to take our passions and turn them into action and experience. I am, and always will be, grateful to the St. Joe’s family for their support of my formation, and that of my sister (Mairin, Class of 2013) and brother (Michael, Class of 2020).”

Click here for The Greenville News report on the election.


University of South Carolina senior Grace Cooney, a 2016 SJCS graduate, has been named a recipient of the Rotary Global Grant to pursue a Master of Science in Migration, Culture, and Global Health from Queen Mary University of London in 2020-2021.

Rotary Global Grants are valued at more than $30,000, provide one year of graduate study abroad and encourage recipients to engage in community service work.

Grace is a Stamps Scholar and senior in the South Carolina Honors College, where she majors in Public Health and minors in French. After graduation in May 2020, she will attend Queen Mary University of London and receive a Master of Science in Migration, Culture, and Global Health. She aims to use her experiences abroad and passion for combating inequity to create tangible change through hands-on care in underserved populations.

Read more about Grace and the honor she has received at the following links:






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On Wednesday, November 13, SJCS Middle School celebrated the memorial of St. Albert the Great, Doctor of the Church and patron of scientists, with the annual Middle School Science Fair.

Sixth-grade students demonstrated scientific concepts, while seventh- and eighth-grade students presented their Science Fair projects. The award winners in the seventh and eighth grades were as follows:

1st: Margaret Turner
2nd: Olivia Gaino
3rd: Liam Okuley

1st: Jordan Pearse
2nd: Taylor Scott
3rd: Maeve Arnett


Several SJCS students helped to usher at a movie screening that St. Joe’s history teacher Mrs. Marla Palmer helped to put on Sunday at Furman University’s McAlister Auditorium.

The Greenville Jewish Federation, in partnership with and sponsorship by Furman University, the S.C. Council on the Holocaust and the Selden K. Smith Foundation, presented a special screening of “Who Will Write Our History,” a documentary about archives that were discovered underneath the ruins of the Warsaw Ghetto in Poland after World War II.

Producer Nancy Spielberg (youngest sister of Steven Spielberg), and director Roberta Grossman were in attendance and participated in a panel discussion, and then Mrs. Palmer and those on the planning committee had dinner with Ms. Spielberg.

In November 1940, days after the Nazis sealed 450,000 Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto, a secret band of journalists, scholars and community leaders decided to fight back. Led by historian Emanuel Ringelblum and known by the code name Oyneg Shabes, this clandestine group vowed to defeat Nazi lies and propaganda not with guns or fists but with pen and paper. Now, for the first time, their story is told as a feature documentary. Written, produced and directed by Roberta Grossman and executive produced by Nancy Spielberg, “Who Will Write Our History” mixes the writings of the Oyneg Shabes archive with new interviews, rarely seen footage and stunning dramatizations to transport us inside the Ghetto and the lives of these courageous resistance fighters. They defied their murderous enemy with the ultimate weapon – the truth – and risked everything so that their archive would survive the war, even if they did not. (credit to https://whowillwriteourhistory.com/about-the-film/)


The St. Joseph’s varsity football team’s memorable season came to an end on a cold, rainy evening against Gray Collegiate Academy with a 44-18 loss in the second round of the Class 2A playoffs Friday night.

The Knights (10-2) scored on their first three possessions and led 18-12, but Gray Collegiate took the lead right before halftime and took control in the second half.

St. Joe’s scored on its opening possession on a 48-yard touchdown run by sophomore K.D. Boyd. The PAT was no good, and it was 6-0.

Gray Collegiate responded on its first drive but also failed on the conversion, and it was 6-6 with seven minutes left in the first quarter.

The Knights marched 64 yards, capping the drive with senior Rashad Luckey’s 5-yard touchdown run. A two-point conversion try was no good, and St. Joe’s led 12-6 late in the first quarter.

The War Eagles scored early in the second quarter and missed their conversion attempt, making it 12-12.

The Knights drove 70 yards, with Luckey scoring on a 7-yard run. Once again, a two-point try failed, but St. Joe’s had an 18-12 advantage with about a minute remaining in the half.

It was Luckey’s 28th touchdown in eight games this season (he’s missed four due to injuries).

Gray Collegiate struck quickly with a touchdown pass and two-point conversion before the end of the quarter and went into halftime with a 20-18 lead.

The War Eagles scored on their first possession of the second half and added another two-point play, making it 28-18.

St. Joe’s moved deep into War Eagles territory, but an interception ended the drive, and Gray Collegiate went the length of the field to record another touchdown and two-point conversion to take a commanding 36-18 lead with 10 minutes left in the game.

The War Eagles’ last score was the result of a blocked punt with eight minutes left.

Nonetheless, the Knights had an incredible season, reaching 10 victories and the second round of the playoffs for just the second time in the 10-year history of the program. They also earned a home playoff game for the first time.

Indeed, it was a memorable season for the Knights!!


In the spirit of spreading the warmth of Christ’s love this Christmas, SJCS will begin collecting winter weather wear for children living in the Greenville community beginning Monday, December 2. This Christmas project gives students the opportunity to partner alongside Pastor Johnson and “Church Without Walls” to help needy kids living near our school.

Please consider donating NEW and GENTLY used coats, gloves, hats and blankets in children’s sizes this holiday season! All gently used items must be washed and in good condition. Household points will be given to the winning Brother/Sister HH. The deadline for donations is Thursday, December 19.


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Several SJCS students will be attending the annual S.C. Theatre Association Convention this weekend and representing St. Joseph’s in the student-directed one-act performance of Christa Crewdson’s “Wait Wait … I can Explain,” co-directed by seniors Philip Mosley and Alice Norton.

At this conference, the students also will also be competing in the S.C. Tech Olympics, attending a variety of workshops and participating in the S.C. college audition process.


Jason – Ethan Montes
Sheila – Rachael Balts
Fake Dad – Dante Wells*
Fake Mom – Isabel Moran
Fake Brother – Sam Nixon
Fake Sister – Emily Gushue
Fred/Grandpa – Alex Hoverath
Real Dad – Carson Crockett*
Real Mom – Sarah Paguaga
Real Sister – Sara Gushue*
Real Brother – Brian Hoverath

Student Directed by: Alice Norton and Philip Mosley*
Stage Manager: Colette Trocha
Backstage Crew: Meghan Malone* and Helen Norton
Faculty Moderator: Teresa McGrath
* Denotes members of the International Thespian Society #6388


On Wednesday, Oct. 23, the St. Joseph’s Middle School Math Competition Team traveled to Sumter to compete in the SCISA Middle School Math Meet. There were 44 teams, the largest amount ever assembled at the meet. St. Joe’s, which had two teams competing, was represented by Miller Babcock, Elliott Bradley, Mary Branch Cotner, Nolan Curran, Patrick Frank, Caroline Getz, Evan Harman, Allison Kim, Isabella Ross, Abby Stewart and Bentley Thompson.

One of our teams placed in the Top 10 overall. Allison Kim placed 9th overall out of a total of 220 students who competed that day. The students enjoyed the challenge and represented St. Joseph’s in a most positive way by being enthusiastic, cheerful and respectful at all times! Accompanying the students were parent Mary Ellen Bradley and club moderator Elaine Trakas.

On Thursday, Oct. 24, the St. Joseph’s High School Quiz Bowl Team traveled to Sumter to compete in the SCISA State Tournament. St. Joe’s competed against nine of the top Quiz Bowl teams in the state. All of these teams, including St. Joe’s, won their respective regional competitions earlier in the month. Then they met to determine the best in the state.

St. Joseph’s competed well, nearly making it into the final group of three, falling just short in a match that went to a tie-breaker. Students who competed on behalf of St. Joseph’s were Matthew Wilson, Isabel Moran, Grace Widman, Emily Gushue, Sara Gushue and Gabby Olewiler. Also pictured is Meredith Wiper.

Not only has it been a long time since a St. Joseph’s squad made it to a regional, but the fact that this team competed so impressively is testimony to how intelligent and well-rounded a group it is. Accompanying the students during these competitions were co-moderators Thomas Wilson and Sean Chapman.


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SJCS seniors Ava Dobson and Preston Jennings signed athletic scholarships on Wednesday, Nov. 13, Ava to run cross country and track at the University of North Carolina and Preston to swim at Providence College.

Ava, who did not run competitively before her sophomore year, is a two-time Gatorade South Carolina Girls Cross Country Runner of the Year and a two-time Class 2A cross country individual state champion. She will try for her third title Saturday.

Ava has a personal-best time of 17:12, which is 24 seconds faster than the state record. However, according to the South Carolina High School League, a state-record time must be achieved during the state meet. Ava has run under that time on two other occasions: during the Region 1-2A meet (17:26) and during this past week’s Class 1A/2A state qualifier (17:24), which was run on the same course as this coming week’s state meet in Camden.

She was a member of state championship teams each of the past two years in cross country.

Preston was the Class 3A state runner-up in both the 100-yard freestyle (49.84) and the 100 butterfly (52.62) as a senior, and he was a member of the Knights’ state championship 200 medley and 400 freestyle relay teams.

Preston was a member of the Class 3A all-state team and All-Region 1-2A team, and he was a member of three straight state championship teams. He also was the Knights’ team captain this past season.

Congrats to Ava and Preston on signing their scholarships!

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