For 180 years, St. Joseph’s Academy has followed the trailblazing footsteps of its founders, the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet.
Since its founding in 1840, the all-girls college preparatory school has moved from south St. Louis to the campus of Clayton’s Fontbonne University before settling in its current location, in Frontenac, in 1955. Now, St. Joseph’s Academy is continuing to grow in the spirit of its founders.
“We’re constantly looking for ways to move forward,” says principal of academic affairs Jennifer Sudekum. “We feel we’re continuing the sisters’ spirit with the new additions to our building and upgrades to our curriculum.”
The core values of St. Joseph’s Academy focus on educating young women to become their best selves. “We provide a balanced approach to educating the whole woman,” Sudekum explains. “We’re providing girls with the skills and experiences while in high school so they can anticipate what their career might be.”
The additions being made to the St. Joseph’s Academy campus reflect that focus and the well-rounded curriculum the school provides. Additions include three new art studio spaces on the second floor – along with a name change to Sisters of St. Joseph Humanities Hall – giving students the space to pursue two- and three-dimensional art both as a hobby and as a career.
Additionally, the lab and lecture spaces in the new Weidert Center for Integrated Science have been renovated and upgraded. “It’s really fantastic space,” Sudekum says. “This meets and exceeds the needs of our students and our curriculum. It goes above and beyond.”
St. Joseph’s Academy has 11 courses in the Computer Science and Engineering Department, four of which are engineering-specific, and robotics is offered both as a course and as an extracurricular, with its competitive robotics team. “[We] really elevate students to the next level by preparing them for a career in STEM [science, technology, engineering and math],” Sudekum says.
The project has enhanced more than 23,000 square feet of the campus, completed in time for the start of the fall 2020 semester. “The girls have come back to school really excited to experience these spaces,” Sudekum says. “We’re blessed with the space here. We don’t want to stay stagnant; that’s in the spirit of the Sisters of St. Joseph.”
St. Joseph’s Academy, 2307 S. Lindbergh Blvd., Frontenac, 314-394-4300, sja1840.org
St. Joseph’s Academy invites prospective 8th grade families to its Open House on Sunday, Nov. 8, and its Virtual Open House for families with 5th, 6th, and 7th graders on Saturday, Nov. 7. Please visit sja1840.org to learn more about these events and to register.
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