On Wednesday, November 9, four Big Shoulders Fund Northwest Indiana network schools opened their doors to nearly 100 community members for the 23rd annual, and second in Northwest Indiana, Lend a Shoulder Day to showcase just how impactful their support is.
For more than 35 years, Big Shoulders Fund has provided support and resources to schools with demonstrated need that provide a quality, values-based education. To do this, supporters invest more than $40 million annually into many different resources to benefit students. Scholarships are provided to help make tuition more affordable, teachers are provided with leadership training, and all kinds of programs are formulated to guide and support students throughout their educational journeys.
Bishop Noll Institute has been a Big Shoulders Fund Northwest Indiana network school since 2019, and this was their second year hosting the annual Lend a Shoulder Day. Students were beyond excited to share what Bishop Noll means to them and take the guests on a tour throughout the school.
On the tour, students showcased many different types of projects they have been working on--community members got to do everything from watching graphic design students learn how to use Adobe Lightroom to listening to a sneak peek of the band’s Christmas concert. It was the perfect opportunity for community members to see the Big Shoulders Fund mission in action.
“I love it here so much--we do so much around here, so it’s really great to see other people come in and be interested and participate and ask questions. It’s great for us too, because we get to interact with the guests and show them the projects we’re passionate about,” said María Emilia Quiroga, Senior at Bishop Noll.
In addition to highlighting the many great opportunities these schools offer, it was also the perfect way for everyone to see their support in action.
“I think sometimes students don’t always appreciate their experience in high school, but having an opportunity like this to reflect and take a moment to say ‘hey, they do all of this for me’ gives them a moment of gratitude and humility. It’s reflective for me too. The day gives me an opportunity to see my teachers do what they do and watch my students be who they are. As a principal, you do a lot of work and put in a lot of hours, so to see the students share their love of school with the community that’s made that love possible is an amazing experience,” said Lorenza Jara Pastrick, Bishop Noll’s Principal.
Everyone left the event feeling grateful and hopeful about the future. Paul Mullaney, Bishop Noll’s president, explained that Big Shoulders Fund’s support has been incredibly impactful, and he can’t wait to see what they accomplish together in the future.
“The partnership has been a very positive experience and we’re grateful to Big Shoulders Fund for their people and all that they do. I hope that we can continue to grow together. We’ve continued to grow as a school--we have our largest freshman class in 23 years. There are many reasons why we see that growth and the help of Big Shoulders Fund is absolutely one of those reasons,” said Paul Mullaney, Bishop Noll President.
To learn more about Big Shoulders Fund, visit bigshouldersfund.org.