Meet Catherine!

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Catherine Browne, a graduate of the Mount class of 2021, met with me to discuss her life after graduating, her love for journalism, and the advice she would give to a current Mountie.

Catherine grew up always imagining she would go to Villanova University and thankfully her dream came true. Going from a small Catholic high school with only forty girls in her class to a class size with over seven thousand students was a big transition for Catherine. As much as she misses her friends, family, and home in New Jersey she goes to school with her twin brother Kenny, which she feels makes a big difference in her college experience. She feels so lucky to have her best friend and to know that she has someone who she can count on there always by her side. Catherine also feels very lucky because Villanova reminds her much of the Mount in how supportive and loving everyone is in her community. 

When Catherine looked back on her past four years spent at the Mount she couldn’t put her mind on one favorite memory, as her Mount experience was filled with thousands of memories, but she did list her top three moments at the Mount. First was Christmas at the Mount. Christmas at the Mount is a week-long celebration with dress-downs ending with a school-wide party with food and celebrating with fellow classmates. Catherine recalls that she always looked forward to Christmas at the Mount each year. Her second favorite memory at the Mount was Kairos. Kairos is a student-led retreat that allows students to spend time with one another to reflect on their relationship with God, themselves, and others. Catherine went to Kairos both her Junior and Senior year, when she was a Junior she went to Kairos as a member and a Senior as a leader helping guide the Juniors to find love within God and themselves. Lastly, Catherine’s third favorite memory at the Mount was her summertime job volunteering with other students at Camp Sunshine. Camp Sunshine is a camp for terminally ill children and their families to spend time away from their reality of doctors appointments and treatments. Camp Sunshine was so important to Catherine because she was able to create relationships with families across the world and experience five days full of “radiant smiles and everlasting memories.” She continues, “All these memories were such amazing moments where I grew very close with my classmates both in my grade and either younger or older. I look back on pictures all the time” Catherine explains. All these memories are so important to Catherine as they helped her create a stronger connection and discover a stronger love for the Mount community. 

Throughout high school, students get the opportunity to experience, learn, and figure out what it is that they love to do through classes. When asked what her favorite class was, Catherine exclaimed both the LEO program and Journalism. The LEO program is a two-year program at the Mount in which students create a business product focusing on the importance of leadership, entrepreneurship, and opportunities. “[The LEO program] I still talk about to this day. I have taken everything [I’ve learned] from that class to college and I’m able to use everything I’ve learned from that class in a whole bunch [of ways and] in other classes” Catherine explains. Even though Catherine isn’t majoring in business at Villanova, Catherine told me how she uses her understanding from the LEO program to help her apply to be on the committee for Villanova’s Special Olympics. Villanova’s Special Olympics is the biggest student-led Special Olympics in the world and it takes place during the first week of November. The Special Olympics provides year-round sports training and competition for children and young adults with disabilities. Catherine’s other favorite class was Journalism as she was the editor in chief, funnily enough. Catherine is considering doing Journalism as one of her majors as she writes for the newspaper at Villanova — The Villanovan– writing predominantly about Women’s Track and Field at Villanova. “I write for the newspaper here. I’m actually working on a [new] article and I had to interview the track coach” Catherine told me. The LEO program and Journalism helped Catherine become the incredible person she is today. 

Four years of high school, as everyone tells you, go by very quickly and you don’t even realize it. When asking Catherine what advice she would give to a current Mount student she laughed saying, “I’m going to sound like every other person who gave me advice when I was in your position, but I would say make the most of it”. When Catherine attended the Mount the upperclassmen told her to make the most of her time and she didn’t realize what they meant by that until she graduated. She explained that by making the most of your time at the Mount you’ll have so much to look back on and have so many connections no matter how many years after you graduate. Catherine’s other advice is to get involved in the school community. The Mount offers too many opportunities for you to get involved and meet new people in different grades. As well, by getting involved you can discover things about yourself that you might have never explored before and find a love for something new. 

I am so grateful I got the time to interview Catherine these past few weeks. Catherine inspires me as well as all of you to pressure your dreams as she shows so much love and dedication towards people, the world around her, and the things she loves making the world a much better place.

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