Caritas Christi Awards

    The highest honor awarded to a senior at St. James Academy is the “Caritas Christi” Award, which translates to “Love of Christ.”  This award recognizes those students who represent the Heart of Jesus Christ through our Charisms of being One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic.  The Following seniors are the recipients of the Caritas Christi Award: 

          Jackson Allen, Anna Bartkoski, Andrew Brown, Timothy Chik, Hannah Cordova, Sophia DiGiorgio, Grace Gomez, Gannon Hall, Jacey Jackson, Aidan Janatello, Ella Jett, Hannah Joerger, Gabriel Jones, Nathanael Jones, Chloe Kearney, Nora Ley, Joseph Punswick, Isabel Robb, Jerome Schaefer, Mary Sharpnack, Mia Staley, Sophia Tylicki, Landon Weist, Anna Zacharias, Christine Znidarsic

      First Discipleship Certificates

      Under the patronage of Mary as the “First Disciple” of Jesus Christ, the First Disciple Leadership Program aims to form leaders who are disciples and disciples who lead. The curriculum focuses on the human, intellectual, spiritual, and apostolic formation of the person and seeks to inspire Christian servant leadership in its participants to aid the mission and vision of the Community System and beyond.  The following seniors have completed the program with active participation all four years.

            Emily Alley, Anna Bartkoski, Carli Black, Raegan Copley, Mary Kate Ellzey, Nathan Haney, Maggie Hisle, Ella Jett, Nathanael Jones, Kaci Jussel, Chloe Kearney, Natalie Kurland, Kaeleigh Larsen, Nora Ley, Abby Mauer, Audrey Mellick, Chloe Miranda, Olivia Moley, Allison Newkirk, Emma Phelps, Joey Punswick, Mary Sharpnack, Mia Staley, Ashley Thomas, Lauren Wheeler, Anna Zacharias

        Senior Academic Awards

        For demonstrating excellence academically, being a consistently positive contributor to class, and showing interest in the content outside of class time over the course of their four years, the Senior award recipients in the following subjects are:

        Art-Speech & Debate – Sophie Fink, Emma Phelps

        Art-Band Instrumental – Audrey Montanez , Morgan Nguyen

        Art-Orchestra Instrumental – Landon Weist

        Art-Visual – Elizabeth Khemraj, Nora Ley

        Art-Vocal – Lena Pendleton, Isabel Robb

        Business – Emily Alley, Nathan Haney

        Computer Science – Hannah Cordova, Alexander Eastman

        Technology – Emily Grey, Katie Mulloy

        Yearbook – Emily Grey

        English – Nora Ley, Allison Newkirk

        Math – Zach Mauer, Allison Newkirk

        Physical Education – Holden Artzer, Alyssa Campbell, Garret Lynch, Sam Somerhalder

        Science – Daniel DeCastro, Elizabeth Khemraj

        Social Studies – Sophie Fink, Brice Guetterman

        Theology – Hannah Joerger, Charlie Reece

        World Languages – American Sign Language – Maddie Dopp

        World Languages – Latin – Emma Phelps, Landon Weist

        World Languages – Spanish – Hannah Cordova, Tatum Kempf

        National Merit Scholarship Competition

        The National Merit Scholarship Program is an academic competition for recognition and scholarships that began in 1955. High School students enter the National Merit Program by taking the PSAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT) which serves as an initial screen for approximately 1.6 million entrants each year.  The top 3% of students are identified as Commended Scholars based on their test scores.  The top 1% of students move on to the Semifinalist standing and continue in the National Merit competition, potentially earning the standing of a finalist.

        Recognition in the 2022 National Merit Scholarship Competition-Letter of Commendation:

        Joseph M. Hotze, Nora M. Ley, Zachary R. Mauer, Audrey Marie T. Montanez, Allison M. Newkirk

        National Hispanic Recognition Program Scholar (NHRP)

        Academic recognition as part of the College Board’s National Hispanic Recognition Program. The NHRP recognizes the top 2% of the 250,000 Hispanic/Latino junior students who take the PSAT test.

          Hannah Cordova, Jordan Irvine

        Kansas Designated State Scholars

        State Scholars are derived from the KS Scholars Curriculum Completers. The Scholars Curriculum Completers are those that have completed:  4 years English, 4 years Math, 3 years Science (including Biology, Chemistry and Physics), 3 Social Studies, and 2 Foreign Language. State Scholars designation is based on an index which mathematically combines the ACT Composite score and the student’s 7 semester GPA.

        Samuel Albright, Emily Alley, Holden Artzer, Danielle Booth, Andrew Brown, Kaylee Brungardt, Bryce Childress, Tyler Claiborne, MaryBeth Clark, Hannah Cordova, Daniel Campos De Castro, David Donaldson, Hailey Earp, Mary Kate Ellzey, Sophie Fink, Elizabeth Grant, Reese Hazell, John Henry Homolka, Joseph Hotze, Joseph Hubbell, Isabella Hudson,Jordan Irvine, Katie Jacobson, Aidan Janatello, Nathanael Jones, Chloe Kearney, Charlotte Keating, Elizabeth Khemraj, Sabrina Kopecky, Jacob Kreeger, Julia Kropf, Ryan Kuckelman, Natalie Kurland, Nora Ley, Noah Luck-Smith, Garrett Lynch, Abigail Mauer, Zachary Mauer, Chloe Miranda, Audrey Marie Montanez, Elijah Moore, Katie Mulloy, Allison Newkirk, Morgan Nguyen, Kobe Parke, Vera Pendleton, Emma Phelps, Colby Pierce, Piper Price, Joseph Punswick, Nickolas Ramirez, Kathryn Rempel, Clare Rosa, Abigail Rosendahl, Jerome Schaefer, Rowen Skahan, Sam Somerhalder, Mia Staley, Ashley Thomas, Sophia Tylicki, Brett Urich, Landon Weist, Ashlyn Weybrew, Lauren Wheeler, Alexandra Wilson, Landon Winters.

        Kansas Governor’s Scholars

        The Governor’s Scholars program honors the top academic Kansas High School Seniors. This program is coordinated by the Governor by the Confidence in Kansas Public Education Task Force.

        Nora Ley, Abigail Mauer

        Thunder 30

        The Thunder 30 is an award presented to those that acquire a 30 or above on their ACT.

        Emily Alley, Bentley Banker, Danielle Booth, Andrew Brown, Sophia DiGiorgio, Sophie Fink, Grace Gomez, Joseph Hotze, Jordan Irvine, Charlotte Keating, Elizabeth Khemraj, Sabrina Kopecky, Jacob Kreeger, Ryan Kuckelman, Nora Ley, Noah Luck-Smith, Abigail Mauer, Zachary Mauer, Audrey Marie Montanez, Elijah Moore, Allison Newkirk, Morgan Nguyen, Vera Pendleton, Victoria Pfiefer, Emma Phelps, Colby Pierce, Piper Price, Paxton Redding, Clare Rosa, Abigail Rosendahl, Connor Rylance, Jerome Schaefer, Catherine Steiner, Brett Urich, Landon Weist, Alexandra Wilson

        KSHSAA Citizen Award

        The KSHSAA Award is for citizenship – respect for country; assume responsibility to improve school/community; reverence for life

        Brice Guetterman, Rowan Skahan

        St. James Academy Alumni Scholarship

        The Alumni Memorial Scholarship was created in 2018 by alum Bridget Roszel, Class of 2011, in honor of students and alumni who have passed away since the school’s opening.  Seniors are given the opportunity to apply their Christian Stewardship Projects toward the scholarship application and to share how they plan to continue serving in the future.  The 2022 recipients of the Alumni Memorial Fund Scholarship are:

        Emily Grey and Nora Ley

        Recognition of Students Who Have Enlisted for Military Service

        Colin Lavery – Alabama National Guard

        Angel Miranda – Navy

        Gabe Puchalla – Marines

        Aaron Vance – Air Force

        Msgr. Burger Vocational Scholarship Award

        Awarded to graduating senior  who is entering the seminary:

        Joseph Punswick

        2021-22 UNDERCLASS AWARDS

          Charism Awards

          One Award

          The One Award is given to a student who represents the spirit of the community.  We are called to live as One Body of Christ.  Additionally and essentially, they support and encourage others to share their gifts and they embody the hospitality that Christ himself witnessed to the world.

          William Book, Sydney Conrad, Alex Johnson, Sophia Zacharias, Alex Brady, Frances Book

          Holy Award

          The Holy Award is given to a student who is seeking holiness through personal prayer, stewardship, virtue and integrity.  This award is given to a student who is in tune with the voice of God in their daily life.  Living and celebrating faith in word and deed are hallmarks of the Holy Award winners.

          Erik Brim, Emmie Holton, Patrick Donnelly, Cara Gomez, Elizabeth Laville, Patrick Rodriguez

          Catholic Award

          The Catholic Award is given to a student who is continually seeking to understand faith.  The  student who is selected as the Catholic award winner is an overall strong student, who is active in their community and well rounded.  Additionally, they are a person who strives for excellence in all aspects of life, always demonstrating hard work and effort.

          Michael Bianco, Annie Conklin, Kellan Quinn, Norah Rosa, Rachael Baron, Nathan Melchior, John Niesen

          Apostolic Award

          The Apostolic Award is given to a student who lives their faith by serving others.  The winner of the Apostolic award is a student who is seen as a servant who spreads the Good News of Jesus Christ both in our school and in the broader community.  This award winner embodies an understanding of Jesus’ commission to go and spread the good news of the gospel.

          Caleb Heeb, Vera Plunkett, Elliot Coulson, Bernadette Wallace, Natalie Astoquilca-May, Anna Gomez, Brendan Rickert

            Undergraduate Scholarship Awards

            Amici Fideles “Faithful Friends” Scholarship

            This award is anonymously sponsored by an SJA family whose child received caring support from friends at St. James at a critical time.  These friends surrounded the student with faithful friendship by showing compassion, love, attentiveness, determination, commitment and forgiveness when it was needed.  The parents were so touched, they created the scholarship fund, “Amici Fideles”, or “Faithful Friends”.  The $500 award is designed to recognize two Sophomore students (rising Juniors for the 2022-23 school year) who pursue academic excellence, set a good moral example, and have shown extraordinary faithfulness to a friend in need.  This year we had 27 students nominated for this scholarship, by faculty, staff and coaches.  This year’s recipients are:

            Cara Gomez  and Bernadette Wallace


            Samantha Branson “Joy and Happiness” Memorial Scholarship:

            Samantha Branson was a disciple, teacher and mother at St. James Academy who brought happiness and a loving heart to everyone who knew her.  She was known by all, for her love of Jesus and her students, her passion for literature and writing, and for the “Wall of Happiness” that adorned her classroom walls each year, allowing students to share with each other those things, big and little, that brought them happiness.  A scholarship was established in her honor, so that her memory and example can live on within our SJA community.  The $500 award is designed to recognize a rising Junior or Senior student who emulates joy and happiness, loves literature, and creates community in the classroom.  This year’s recipient is:

            Lily Thieman

            Lauren Dopp Memorial Scholarship

            This scholarship was established by the family of Lauren Dopp ‘09 as a memorial to honor her special qualities of purity, honesty, faith, and complete determination.  Lauren’s friends speak of her as a  woman of radical faith and say that she possessed an unbelievable desire to love.  She spoke her mind and abandoned social boundaries as she befriended all who would let her. She had a heart for service, and she lived for others.  Her devotion to honesty and truth made her a loyal friend and  teammate.  She admitted her flaws and committed to her struggles.  She faced life head-on and made the most of every opportunity she was given.  Her ownership of her flaws made her a hero to those around her. Lauren continues to be an example of faith and purity in our St. James community with the tradition of saying “Be, Know, Do” at the closing of our prayer circles.  This $500 award recognizes a veteran St. James Academy Spirit Team member (either cheer or dance) who best represents the ideals set forth by former member, Lauren Dopp ‘09.  This year’s recipient is:

            Anna Gomez


            Zach Graas “Dream Big” Memorial  Scholarship

            The Zach Graas “Dream Big” Memorial Scholarship was established to honor the memory and continue the legacy of Zach Graas, class of 2011. While Zach was not a straight-A student nor a star athlete, he possessed two key attributes – ability to dream big, and the grit to achieve those dreams.  Zach pursued his goals with relentless determination.  What set Zach apart from others his age was his ability to get out of his comfort zone and engage with the people around him, whether he knew them or not.  A brain cancer diagnosis at the beginning of his college career didn’t slow him down in the pursuit of his greatness, nor did his 6-year battle against brain cancer.  Zach achieved more in those 6 years than many people achieve in a lifetime. Established in 2029, in memory of Zach, this $1000 scholarship is designed to recognize a Junior student who is determined, has a positive outlook and shows friendship to all.  It is someone who embraces challenges and lives life to its fullest.  This year’s recipient is:

            Natalie Astoquilca-May


            David B. Jones Memorial Scholarship

            This scholarship was established to honor the memory of David B. Jones, father of five graduates of St. James Academy.  Though cancer claimed his body, it could never conquer his spirit nor erase his legacy.  David instilled a spirit of competition, excellence, and achievement in all his children, and strove to support them in all their endeavors.  Armed with his stopwatch and heat sheets, he was a constant presence on the sidelines and at the finish line.  So it is fitting that this scholarship supports student-athletes in their own pursuit of excellence and achievement.  This $1000 scholarship recognizes a rising Sophomore, currently involved in  either swimming or track and field. This year’s recipient is:

            Amelia Schaefer


            SJA for SJA Memorial Scholarship

            The SJA for SJA scholarship was created in memory of Stefanie Jo Adams, wife of football coach Jeff Adams, and mother of alumni Jase Adams ‘19 and Olivia Clary, nee Adams ‘15. Stefanie was a music educator for over 30 years.  While Stefanie had a profound love of music and education, she also valued supporting others.  Everything she did was filled with enthusiasm and purpose.  She loved supporting her family in their various activities and found joy in doing so.  She and Olivia shared a common passion for music and spent many hours playing instruments and traveling to Olivia’s harp lessons over the years.  Even though she was not a star athlete (or even athletic in the slightest), she could be heard cheering loudly in the stands for every SJA football game Jase played and Jeff coached.  Stefanie packed her vigor for life into every moment and inspired many others to do the same.  Established in memory of Stefanie Jo Adams, this $750 scholarship is designed to recognize two rising Sophomores, Juniors or Seniors who are currently involved in band, orchestra, or football. This year’s recipients are:

            Sophia Hance and Alex Johnson

              Underclassmen Academic Awards

              For demonstrating excellence academically, being a consistently positive contributor to class, and showing interest in the content outside of class time over the course of their four years, the Senior award recipients in the following subjects are:


              • Amelie King, Joseph Shoulta, Josh Dodson, Jayden Leyva, Paden Phar, Liam Quinn,Teigan Blaine


              • Ashton Lang, Isaiah Lang, Vanessa Kamau, Quintan Smith, Alex Brady, Andrew Hartegan


              • Quinn Hays, Nick May, Sophia Hance, Betsy Laville, Helen Smock


              • Hope Feldman, Reagan Salsbury, Evan Schneider, Helena Stafford


              • Natalie Bliss, Violet L’Esperance, Lila O’Hara, Julia Headley, Gemma Klassen, Malcolm Russell, Makayla Chapman, Gabby Rackers


              • Will Book, Sydney Conrad, Braden Magistro, Lincoln McIntire, Elizabeth McCann, Lauren Stanley

              Computer Science

              • Isabelle Connealy, Romi Totta, Emily Morris, Aidan Rund


              • Lucas Frias, Jack Rogers, Blake Mathy


              • Isabelle Connealy, Amelie King, Gemma Klassen, Norah Rosa, Natalie Astoquilca-May, Adrianna Brady


              • Leah Cordova, Avery O’Hara, Caleb Ochs, Malori Ard, Katelyn Kuckelman, Kate McKinzie, Marie Kerschen, Betsy Laville, Jacob Oberrieder

              Physical Education

              • Jacob Fratzel, Allie Morfeld, Braxton Guetterman, Grace Klemp, Ashley Nelson, Carter Poindexter


              • Olivia Fucich, Quinn Hays, Cambrie Larsen, Patrick Donnelly, Sydney Nguyen, Christopher Simmons, Grace Hecke, Betsy Laville, Mia Reuter

              Social Studies

              • Alexander Rueger, Sophia Schultz, Patrick Donnelly, Katelyn Kuckelman, Brianna Simms


              • Michael Bianco, Ian Mulloy, Madison Steinlage, Heidi Devers, Jacob Hiltunen, Braden Magistro, Betsy Laville, Ava Requet, Patrick Rodriguez

              World Language-American Sign Language

              • Belle Brady, Nathan Reiter, Macy Cooks, Sydney Lanham, Andrew Aye, Avery Spacek

              World Language-Latin

              • Violet L’Esperance, Avery O’Hara, Katelyn Kuckelman, Leah Phelps, Adrianna Brady, Taylor McCoy

              World Language-Spanish

              • Charlie Fasi, Allie Morfeld, Luke Gammill, Ava Reyes, Ella Culliss, Patrick Rodriguez