La Riviere Society Award Winners - 2019

Congratulations to Excellence in Teaching award winner Patricia Schneider and this year's three young scholars!

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 “…Receiving this scholarship has been an honor and motivates me to continue to work even harder to help grow as an individual and help my community…”

“…I am proud to be named a LaRiviere Scholar because it is an huge honor…I love to help people…I hope to continue to follow Father LaRiviere’s good example…”

“…I am proud and grateful to be named a LaRiviere Scholar because it shows where hard work can lead you…”

At the March 23rd Academic Assembly, Aquinas Juniors Malosi S., Lauren L., and Evelyn A.were selected by Aquinas leadership and named the inaugural LaRiviere Scholars for 2019-2020, each receiving a $2000 scholarship for their Senior year.  Named Scholarships take many forms and Aquinas and the LaRiviere Society have created this unique scholarship that reflects the values of the expectation that Father Earl had for each student… with the St. Bernardine merger we have broadened the Scholars’ goals reflecting Father LaRiviere’s original mantra “to be a Gentleman, Scholar and a Saint” to:


a SOLID CITIZEN... a displays an admired civic integrity...a courteous and honorable community citizen

 
an AVID LEARNER...a student who strives within their individual ability for personal academic achievement

 
and a MORAL MODEL...has a character that is seen by others as a model of personal ethical values


These attributes supersede traditional measurement benchmarks of Grade Point Averages, Academy Tracks, Student Body Elected Office, Athletic Success, and Financial Need.
The Primary selection characteristic is CHARACTER.

Please help us to support future students and teachers, with your monthly sustaining gift to the Scholarship Fund!

Our La Riviere Society Award Winners

LRS Scholar - Evelyn A.

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EVELYN A. of Rialto first points to her parents for their guidance “for showing me what it is like to be a good person.” Evelyn has been active as a Freshman volleyball player and participated in many clubs…Debate, ProLife, Equality, Glee Choir, Shamrock Club, and Photography. She points to Ethics Teacher Mr. Chavez as her greatest influence this past year. “He has pushed me to be a better person and a better Catholic…and Mrs. Fontes was like a second mom…pushed me to be the best version of myself…” Evelyn is attracted to the medical field and expressly hopes that her parents, Aquinas and the LaRiviere Society will be proud for giving her this distinction.

LRS Scholar - Lauren L.

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LAUREN L. is our second La Riviere Scholar in 2019. Each Scholar has won a $2,000 scholarship applied to Senior year tuition.   Lauren, from Fontana also notes the strong influence of her parents, especially their “…leadership qualities. Their attributes have rubbed off on me making me the person I am today.” A product of public schooling she says “My Aquinas experience has been nothing more than amazing!”She relates that the Aquinas teachers have all “contributed to her character development and success here at Aquinas.”She also gives a strong shout out to the Ethics Classes and “my wonderful Ethics teachers.” Lauren actively participates in the youth ministry at Our Lady of Assumption. She says becoming a LaRiviere scholar “motivates me to continue to work even harder help grow as an individual and help my community.”

LRS Scholar - Malosi S.

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MALOSI S. from San Bernardino looks to the strong influence of his faith and his family, noting how hard he sees his father working and his mother’s strong caring (but she can use “hard love when it was needed!”) Malosi enjoys math and science, and gives special recognition to the Aquinas Football Coaching Staff in his moving from JV to Varsity always teaching us “…to be men of God, to always push past your limits, and how to be a man.” Malosi also recognizes his peers as “Through these relationships that I am able to build and grow my personal values and my faith with my friends.” La Riviere Scholars were selected based on a student having demonstrated high moral, intellectual and spiritual character.

Excellence in Teaching - Patricia Schneider

The Father La Riviere Society embarked on three goals for 2019…


1. Create a Statue of Father La Riviere and place it in a grotto space with recognition of donors and reflections on Father La Riviere’s unique lifelong contributions to his students.


2. Begin a La Riviere Scholarship Program that will name students as “La Riviere Scholars” based on a student’s character and integrity.


3. Initiate an annual award that recognizes an outstanding teacher who emulates teaching excellence and lasting impact on students.


The first winner of the La Riviere Society's new "Excellence in Teaching Award" is Ms. Patricia Schneider, seen here at the Aquinas HS Awards Ceremony on May 22, 2019. She has taught at Aquinas for many years, and will be retiring this year. 


Ms. Schneider, who has taught mathematics, is noted for her high energy and concern for EVERY STUDENT. From her students:


“It’s impossible to fail her class…she won’t let you!”


“She will come in on break and vacations to help us prepare for College Placement exams…”


Ms. Schneider, reflecting on her career with AHS…


WHY MATH AS YOUR CAREER?


“…I got into Math somewhat by accident. I was going to get an engineering degree at Humboldt State when my Mom and Dad’s health started to deteriorate. My studies lead me to a faster way out of college by turning to a teaching credential in Mathematics, in order to finish sooner and return home to care for my parents.”


HOW IS TEACHING MATH CHALLENGING TODAY?


“…Math is a unique subject to teach. Unlike other subjects, Math continually builds on the previous lessons. I have had the pleasure to teaching both Advanced Placement and entry level students. There definitely is a common denominator – All students like to be acknowledged for what they know. As for the non-STEM students…those that are willing to work hard, do very well.”


INTERESTS OUTSIDE OF TEACHING


“My interests are many. I love to read animal stories. I can also enjoy Science Fiction, but it should be an easy light read (entertaining). Among my hobbies, I enjoy horse back riding with my sister. I love to garden – put me outdoors and I’m happy! I like visiting old people – they are interesting and have great stories to share.” 


WHY IS TEACHING IN A CATHOLIC SCHOOL UNIQUE?


Teaching in a Catholic school has its perks. I love that I can have an integral relationship with God that I can also share with my students. One of the things I have always done – I include a prayer board in my classroom where students are free to post their own intentions. Each time we pray collectively we include all intentions posted on our board. Teaching at Aquinas High School is different than other high school because Aquinas High School is proud of its Catholic heritage and encourages Catholicism in the classroom. I am allowed and encouraged to respond to faith questions from the students and we can therefore have God-centered conversations and don’t have to worry about it. I can reflect my values and my faith in my teaching. I have used faith stories in my Math word problems and students have looked forward to what I might present on their quizzes and tests. They have even asked…”What faith story question do you have on our test this time, Ms. Schneider?”


LOOKING BACK AT YOUR AQUINAS CAREER…SPECIAL MOMENTS?


My greatest memories of my tenure at Aquinas are – the students’ response to my presentations, their excitement at their growth in understanding a math concept, their willingness to come to tutoring when the concept has been difficult, and of course, the “lightbulb” moments and smiling faces when they realize. “I got this!”


RETIREMENT PLANS ?


My plans for retirement aren’t that many. I want to rest! I want to garden, growing some of my own vegetables. I want to clean my house and…Did I mention that I want to REST?


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