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Year in Review 2016-2017

This year consisted of Inter-Ac championships, the announcement of a new Head of School, and the invention of nacho pizza.

September 

Back to school started out with some major changes for the year. Mr. Talbot announced that he would not be returning to Malvern after the 2016-17 school year due to family matters.

Malvern Prep’s freshman class joined the Malvern brotherhood at the annual Brotherhood Ceremony in front of the entire school.

Malvern implemented its fourth different schedule in four years – this time moving Community Time to later in the day between fourth and fifth periods.

Carson Wentz and the Eagles took Philadelphia, and Malvern, by storm. For three weeks when the Eagles were 3-0, the entire Malvern community seemed to be on the #WentzWagon.

Malvern’s football team faced off against LaSalle at the historic Franklin Field at the University of Pennsylvania. Malvern students showed out in full force and the football team came out with a huge first win of the year.

We surveyed the incoming freshman class at orientation, learning a number of statistics like which social media they use, what sports they play, and who would they would vote for if they could vote for President. For the Class of 2020, Donald Trump carried 43% of the vote, followed by 28% of the class who would choose not to vote, and 11% who felt they did not know enough about the candidates to decide. Clinton carried 10% of the vote.

October

After a long, hard fought battle the seniors finally got the senior lounge back after a two-year hiatus. The new senior lounge is located in Dougherty Hall and has TVs, couches, a Wii, and a Gamecube.

Alumnus Alex Hornibrook ’15, who left Malvern after the fall semester of his senior year to begin college at the University of Wisconsin, was named the starting quarterback. In his first start, he led the Badgers to an away victory over Michigan State in a nationally televised game on ESPN.

Our center page spread covered key issues that would be important to students during the presidential election season. In wake of comments made presidential candidate Donald Trump, we discussed the definition of “locker room talk” with several Malvern coaches and players. We interviewed alumnus Kevin Cirilli ’08, who covered the Trump campaign for Bloomberg News.

During an October assembly, juniors selected their summer Christian service trips in a random lottery under the leadership of Director of Christian Service Mr. Larry Legner. Students and parents were concerned about safety of some destinations this year, and the trip to Armenia was later cancelled due to safety concerns.

The moms of Malvern’s football team came together to participate in a Gridiron Game of Honor to help raise money for breast cancer awareness. The teams consisted of entirely mothers who were coached by players on the football team.

Homecoming was a huge success with many alumni returning to Warren Ave. The day was capped by a huge win for the football team over Germantown Academy 45-15. At night, students took to the O’Neill Center for the Homecoming Dance, where “Levels” by Avicii was a highlight as usual.

November

On November 29, Malvern announced Fr. Donald Reilly O.S.A. as the new Head of School. Reilly, who currently serves as the President of St. Augustine Prep in New Jersey, will take Mr. Christian Talbot’s position starting in the 2017-18 school year.

Malvern Prep nearly went up in flames when MyMalvern locked students out of seeing their grades the weekend after the first quarter was over. The problem was fixed and students were able to see their grades every quarter after.

Donald Trump was elected as the 45th President of the United States. There were mixed feelings about this result on Malvern’s campus, as well as throughout the nation.

After sitting out for two years due to injury, Joel “The Process” Embiid made his first appearance as a Philadelphia 76er. The words “The” and “Process” have never been said more in the history of Malvern.

Malvern Prep students, faculty, and staff celebrated Thanksgiving with family and friends on a beautiful November day.

December

A feature story in our publication introduced Father Donald Reilly O.S.A. as the future Head of School at Malvern Prep. Our editorial addressed some key points that we want Reilly to know about the Malvern student body.

Malvern’s quarterly honors assemblies changed this year to a more interactive format. A team of teachers redesigned the assemblies to include videos and presentations of student learning.

Mr. Edward Liga conducted the men’s chorus group at the Chester County Courthouse. They sang “America the Beautiful” for about thirty newly inducted American citizens.

Basketball began its season. Malvern’s team was very young, with five freshmen and just three seniors. Their season modeled a good stepping stone to winning an Inter-Ac championship, which has not happened for the Friars since 2012.

Malvern held the annual Christmas Talent Show the last day before Christmas break. The show consisted of a magic trick by Andrew Reilly ’20, Jack Ludin ’17 singing “Wagon Wheel”, and John Scargall returned to Malvern to sing “Wild Rover”.

The Student Council Dodgeball Tournament was also held on the last day before Christmas break. There were a number of teams from all grades, and the tournament was as competitive as ever.

For the holidays, our staff wrote columns about their favorite Christmas experiences and traditions. We learned that Christmas poker is a very serious matter at the Pizzico household, and that other editors consider the use of artificial christmas trees to be similar to regifting.

January

As January began so did Malvern’s third quarter of grading. Like December, the Malvern basketball team was the talk of the town with their high tempo offense orchestrated under Head Coach John Harmatuk.

On January 7, Malvern Theater Society held auditions for the upcoming spring musical “Les Miserables”.

Malvern swimming’s string of Inter-Ac championships came to an end after four straight years of victory.

The Malvern Middle School Theater Society put on the musical “James and the Giant Peach”, with a girl casted as the lead role of James.

Many Malvern students were studying hard to prepare for their Midterm Exams the week of January 22.

The junior class held their mass and reception on January 22 to receive their class rings.

The Malvern Student Council held a dress down on January 27 to raise funds and awareness for the annual Evanfest lacrosse tournament.

To wrap the month up, January was closed out with Catholics Schools Week, Senior Recognition Day on January 30, and the annual SpeakUp! Event on January 31 open to students and their parents to talk about issues at home and in school.

February 

Mr. David Gueriera, the former head coach of West Chester East, was named as the official head coach of Malvern football.

Mr. Larry Legner stepped down as Christian Service Director. Legner had spurred various changes in the program, ranging from the CARES walk to the global service trips.

Student Council was preparing for the upcoming elections, which would take place on March 3.

The Armenia service trip was canceled due to problems in neighboring countries. Seniors who had gone last year were disappointed, but pleased with how Mr. Legner handled the situation.

The eighth grade began working with Syrian charities by partnering with multiple organizations who could assist them in helping refugees.

Intramural basketball began with over 200 students competing. Social Studies teacher Mr. Burke moderated the events.

Malvern’s Desmond Papariello ’18 signs with Garuda Music, fulfilling a lifelong goal.

March

Malvern’s production of “Les Miserables” kicked off the beginning of March with a bang, debuting on Friday, March 3 and finishing the next weekend on Saturday the 11.

Fr. Donald Reilly O.S.A. notified the Malvern Community that there would be a significant change in the administration starting at the end of this school year. Upper School Head Mr. Ron Algeo would now take on the role of Assistant Head of School for Student Leadership, while Middle School Head Mr. Patrick Sillup would assume the new position of Assistant Head of School for Academics.

On March 17, three groups of students from the Social Entrepreneurship Class presented in front of CEOs at the Wharton School of Business.

An AP testing policy changed. Malvern students were now allowed to opt out of taking the AP test, but only if they were taking more than three and if the college they were going to did not take AP credit.

Malvern’s new virtual reality technology was unveiled by Head of School Christian Talbot on March 7 at the Board of Trustees retreat.

On Monday, March 20 there was a faculty meeting where ideas for next year’s J-Term were presented and discussed.

Malvern joined the Mastery Transcript Consortium, a collection of high schools that are seeking to change the traditional college transcript.

The Eighth Grade class hosted an off-campus retreat at Villanova University to end their bridge week.

The IT Department workshopped the addition of virtual reality in classrooms to the Board of Trustees.

Our editorial took a look at Malvern’s reputation, and the need for each individual student to represent the school in words and actions.

April

Our Brotherhood Issue profiled kids who have never been mentioned by the Blackfriar Chronicle. We told the stories of 27 different Malvern students.

We also featured four members of the Diversity Awareness Club. They gave speeches at an assembly where they spoke of their different views on diversity and experiences at  Malvern.

Guest speaker Michael Blanche talked about the risks of teenage drug abuse on April 20. Tim Barnes, a Conestoga alum, also spoke about his own personal experience and difficulties with drug use.

Eight members of the Blackfriar Chronicle traveled to Seattle, for the National High School Journalism Convention. Members of our staff competed in and won some writeoff competitions, presented on our paper, and attended multiple workshops. It was three days of journalism, and the trip concluded with a visit to the Space Needle.

The NFL Draft was held for the first time ever in Philadelphia on the Ben Franklin Parkway. Many Malvern students went to the Draft Experience and our sports editors, Henry Malone and Pat Ferraiolo were able to attend the red carpet on day two of the draft where they interviewed NFL legends, such as Robert Mathis, Thurman Thomas, and Mike Alstott.

May

Prom was on the Spirit of Philadelphia on May 6. The boat travelled on the Delaware River passing underneath some of the most iconic bridges in Philadelphia.

The senior prank took place on the last day of classes for this year’s graduating class. The prank included an oil wrestling match on the Duffy Beach and a gigantic, homemade slip-n-slide on the hill next to the senior parking lot.

The Senior Tribute and last Monday chapel service for the seniors took place on May 15. The seniors wore their cap and gowns and were honored in front of the rest of the student body.

Next year’s incoming freshman class (the Class of 2021) had a family information night and BBQ on May 16. They were able to learn more about Malvern and meet some of their future Malvern brothers.

The Sixers received the third overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft Lottery. Although it was not what most Malvern Prep students and teachers wanted, especially Mr. DiDomenico, many Friars are still trusting the process.

Students leave for summer break after the last exam on May 26. Many students are excited to go on vacation and attend international Christian Service Trips this summer.

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