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Fr. John Malthaner
“Throughout my time at Venango Catholic High School, three things have become quite clear. First, that the school, whose roots go back to St. Joseph’s High School, has as its foundation the teaching and example of Christ Jesus who came to serve and bring a sense of goodness and hope. Second, the school is a community of students, teachers, and parents who work together to help each other realize our potential. And the third thing that has become quite clear is how our school continues to foster a sound academic program that is challenging to each student. It is obvious to anyone who enters our doors that Venango Catholic High School believes that educated, caring, and empowered young men and women are essential to our world, and this philosophy continues to shape the school today. Please continue to keep us in your prayers, and we will keep you in ours. As always, thank you for your interest in and support of Venango Catholic High School.”
Fr. John Malthaner, VC Headmaster, 1999-2012
“Dear Fr. John, as you may know, I finally graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering! There is no doubt that this milestone would NOT have been possible without the solid foundation I received at Venango Catholic. I am so fortunate and grateful that I was able to attend V.C. The education I received both in and out of the classroom has been invaluable to me. V.C. is truly a special place, and I’m glad that I could be a part of it!
I would also like to thank you for all your extended efforts to get me into the college that was right for me. The belief, support, and confidence in me that was displayed by both you and Mrs. Frost still means a lot to me and still serves as a big motivating factor. Thank you once again for all you’ve done!”
Andrew Kumer ’06
Fr. Nicholas J. Rouch
“I have great confidence in the academic and religious formation students receive at Venango Catholic High School. As Vicar for Education I visit many schools, and monitor their progress. VC maintains high standards in the classroom and beyond. Graduates are well prepared for success in college, faith-guided decision making, and service to others. Even though it is a relatively small school, the faculty and staff are dedicated to provide what’s most important for the students. They foster a school culture that is orderly and disciplined, yet also an atmosphere that encourages creativity, personal initiative, and individuality, all within the framework of the Catholic faith. May God bless the many people who support Venango Catholic’s mission!”
Fr. Nicholas J. Rouch, S.T.D., Vicar for Education – Diocese of Erie
“Even though both of my brothers were exchange students at VC before me (Jorge Cámara, ’97, Mauricio Cámara, ’98) I can say that the experience was totally different from what I expected. Instead of just spending a year away from home and learning a new language, I had a year full of new experiences: where I learned and lived in a different culture; where I felt welcome; and most of all where I met unforgettable friends and family. I truly became a part of the VC community.
Now that I’m back in Mexico, I still remember the good times that I had in Oil City. In speaking with my friends who also spent a year abroad, it’s easy to see that my experience at VC was very different from their experiences elsewhere. At VC they really do make you feel welcome, they help you to adjust, they help you if you’re struggling, and in every way just make you feel like family.
Even though I came to the US to focus on learning English (as I’d already graduated from high school in Mexico), I ended up taking away so much more, including American culture, US history, a love of American sports (Go Steelers!), etc… and I was always supported and helped by the teachers, students, friends, and my awesome American family – all things unique to VC!”
Adrianna Cámara, ’04, BA, Business Administration ’09, Insurance Broker, CLAS Insurance
Mérida, Yucatán, México
“Venango Catholic High School definitely provided for me a meaningful and meticulously constructed foundation to grow upon. The dedicated and knowledgeable teachers went out of their way to be sure I knew all that was necessary to pave the way for success in college and beyond. These teachers have now become some of my biggest role models and closest friends. I think that this is what makes VC unique and truly one-of-a-kind…the Christ-centered family that the staff, students, families, and alumni become. I feel truly blessed to be a part of it!”
Megan Lutz ’08, John Carroll Class of ’12, St. Stephen School Class of ’04
“A strong background in Catholic education has without a doubt helped me immensely to get where I am today: a student at Duke, a top ten university. I began as a student of St. Stephen School and then Venango Catholic High School where I was challenged to reach my potential and graduated valedictorian in 2009. Small class sizes were really beneficial, whether we realized it or not. The ability to always ask questions and have teachers who are concerned with students learning, and not simply passing make Catholic education very special. Just because we live in a small community with less resources than others doesn’t mean we are any less than someone from an academy who has taken 12 AP classes, plays 2 instruments, speaks 3 languages, etc. When I first got to college I felt that maybe I didn’t belong because there were so many people with a mile-long brag sheet; I thought I would never compare to some of them. Then I realized not many had the experiences we get through small Catholic schooling. What our schools do best is take what we do have and make it into something great. Students are instilled with a sense of morals, independence, tenacity, and hope through teachers and coaches who really care about them, curriculum that challenge them to develop a work ethic, religious guidance that encourages them to grow into all-around good and honest adults, and a size that allows the school to function as a loving family. At Duke, people don’t always believe me when I say that my graduating class was made up of only 24 students. I like to see their reactions because I know too many people don’t think we could compete with other students from different backgrounds like cities or larger schools. Well I’m confident in saying we can, and we do.
In high school, my teachers encouraged me while also giving me support and independence so that I actually sought out difficult classes to push myself. They wanted us to take on challenges, but were right there to help if we did start to falter or lose confidence. Not many high schools offer college level anatomy and physiology, which was one of my most difficult yet favorite classes. Our AP classes were quite a challenge as well, but now that I have taken Duke’s calculus, chemistry, biology, etc I’m sure glad I had them in high school because I’m fairly confident I wouldn’t have passed my freshman year without that background. But not only did I pass, I’ve received the honor of dean’s list both semester, am in the top 20% of my class, and have been selected to be a college writing tutor. The writing and literature program at VC also helped prepare my peers and I to face the stress of college applications and freshman writing courses. The teachers were very supportive and always willing to give you input to help you help yourself. They didn’t want to grade the same old essays, but made us push further, and find deeper meaning in what we read. This has proven useful in both everyday life in communication as well as in the classroom. Thanks to my foundations at VC, I was also able to write a research paper which has been selected to be published this year. I feel that I was well prepared to go on and do well in college; even if we didn’t learn all the material in a given subject, we were taught how to work and ask questions so that we may educate ourselves.
They say character is who you are when no one is watching- and in college when no one checks that you do homework, or take a test with 200 other people and only one proctor, that is where Catholic education shines through; the ethics, the hard work, and the encouragement.”
Adrienne Niederriter ’09, St. Stephen School ’05, Student at Duke University, Durham, NC