Meet our 2019 Seniors
My name is Camron, and I have attended St. Joseph’s since the second grade. I wasn’t one to be in activities much (because I really like my free time), but I was involved in the Explorer’s Club during middle school, and archery for a short time, as well. As a minor brag, I took first place at both the Lakota Nation Invitational and the Dakota Oyate Challenge Archery Tournaments in ninth grade. Other than that, I enjoy playing a lot of video games, drawing, occasionally writing, and reading.
When you’ve been at St. Joseph’s for over 10 years, it’s rather difficult to pick one favorite memory. Although, I can safely say any of the game nights with the Perky Home are easily at the top. There’s also every single home trip, and any time I’ve just had a really good laugh with the boys.
I would like to thank every houseparent I’ve ever had. Every houseparent taught me something during my time at St. Joseph’s — whether it was directly said or through my quiet, ninja-like observation.
Let’s not forget my teachers, as they have literally taught me something new almost every day. They would be Stacy, Heather, Peggy Thomas, Steve Conway, Ron Byers, Brock Sundall, Craig Barcal, Linea Schoenhard, LaRayne Woster, Mr. M, Pam Shroyer, Sarah Moran, Dave Baldwin, Matt, Mrs. Donovan, Mr. Rademacher, Mrs. Waterbury, and Mr. Toering (there’s probably other people I missed here, too).
Lastly, I would like to thank my family, friends, Krista … and the man, the myth, the absolute legend: my counselor, Scott. I wouldn’t have made it as far as I have without everybody.
Currently, my plans for next year are to attend Dakota State University and major in Computer Game Design. It certainly doesn’t seem like a very easy thing to do, but I’m hoping it’ll be a fun challenge.
I have a load of advice I’d like to give to younger students, but I’ll try to keep it short. Do your homework. I know everybody says this one, but it can’t be stressed enough. Doesn’t matter how smart you are, either. It’s easy to lose motivation and let the assignments pile up. In the words of Shia LaBeouf, “just do it.” Next, don’t be afraid to try new things. Whether it’s a club, extracurriculars, getting a job or making new friends. I was the guy who very rarely did any of that, and I probably would’ve had a better high school experience if I put myself out there a little more. Also, keep your priorities in check. Whatever is necessary to achieve your goals should be at the top of your list. The staff and teachers are there to help you. Lastly, survive. It’s a dangerous world in high school. Especially if you don’t have ninja skills like me.
My name is Jered. I’ve been attending St. Joseph’s for eight years. In high school, I got a job and started working to earn money to help pay for things that’ll benefit me in the future.
My favorite high school memory is a hard one to pick because there were so many good memories at St. Joseph’s. One of my absolute favorite memories is the Seventh Grade Cultural Trip. It was fun hanging out with friends and also visiting new areas that I hadn’t been before.
At the moment, there’s a lot of people to thank, including my houseparents over the years. I would like to thank Luke and Wendy for making my childhood fun. I would also like to thank Tim and Jess, also Rich and Tara for just being fun in general. Also, Aaron and Melissa for dealing with me too.
My plan for next year is to move to Colorado for college for about a year. My older brother and I are renting an apartment so I’ll try out college there for a year to see if I like it.
My advice for younger students is to do what you want to in high school and don’t be scared to make friends. Life is short. You’re here for a good time, not a long time. Also, don’t fall behind on schoolwork and pay attention in class — it’ll help you a lot in the future, trust me.
My name is Listella. I have attended St. Joseph’s non-consecutively since the fifth grade. I left my junior year, but came back for my senior year and it was by far, the best decision I ever made.
In middle school I played basketball, volleyball, track, and softball while doing cheerleading. My freshman year, I was brought into the world of theatre. I was too shy to go up on stage and act, so I did stuff behind the scenes, such as creating props and moving stuff across the stage in between scenes. The plays I had participated in were: “the Wizard of Oz”, “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown” and “Peter and the Starcatcher”. My sophomore year, I decided to get out of my shell and become a girls basketball cheerleader, while also being the mascot. I joined the Lakota Nation Invitational knowledge bowl team, and that was quite the experience. I was part of the Native American Club all throughout high school, with the honor of becoming president my senior year. My senior year, I participated in girls’ basketball as a manager.
My favorite/embarrassing memory would have to be in sixth grade. That time of my middle school years has probably been the most embarrassing. I decided to play some football with my friends. I didn’t think it would be extreme because we weren’t wearing any pads. It was Joe’s (Religion teacher) first year. He joined in the game and Daryl had just showed us a play to run. I didn’t follow, but I still tried to run it, and Joe actually tackled me. I brought this up recently and he has no recollection of the incident.
I would like to thank Bob and Angie. They made my experience at St. Joseph’s awesome. Thank you to Rachel and Chuck because you taught me that I can’t always get what I want (LOL). Thanks to Aaron and Melissa, you guys have done so much for me by teaching me things that I know will be valuable. I can’t thank you enough. I am thankful for Dee Awna because she was the new sheriff in town and knew how to put me in my place … not that there were many times she had to do it.
You can have a plan, but it may not always go accordingly. I wanted to go to Mitchell Tech and become a Radiology Technician but because of my procrastination, I will be attending the following year. The goals I have set for myself are still in reach, and because of that mindset, I believe I can achieve anything. I believe everyone can if they work hard enough.
The most given advice is to keep up on your school work, and it’s true. Stay on top of your homework, take the opportunities offered and stay out of drama.
My name is Louie. I’ve been attending St. Joseph’s Indian School since the fifth grade.
While in middle school, I was involved in everything except cross country. I was involved in basketball in high school.
Every day at St. Joe’s was a blessing, so every day I had a good memory — there’s too many to name.
I would like to thank every person who knows me or has helped me in some way. I am grateful for all of you! I would like to thank my houseparents, Sue, Scott and Krista.
My advice to younger students is don’t do drugs and stay in school. Work hard in everything you do. Don’t care what other people think — do what you feel is best for you.
My name is Sarah and I have attended St. Joseph’s Indian School for five years.
During my time at St. Joseph’s and Chamberlain High School, I have been involved in volleyball, Native American Club, HOSA (Health Occupation Students of America) and cheerleading.
I’ve been here long enough to make a lot of memories — there are many that come to mind! Although, the best is yet to come when I graduate.
I’d like to thank the houseparents and staff who have supported me throughout the years, the teachers and staff at Chamberlain High School for the encouragement, and my family for always helping me see the positives in life.
After I graduate, I plan on furthering my education. I have several plans in mind and I’m still unsure on which I want to pursue. I don’t know where I’m going, but I know it won’t be boring.
My advice to younger students: try your best in your academics. High school isn’t always great, but there is no limit to what you can accomplish. Never let anyone’s negativity discourage you. Honestly, you’re living for yourself, so as long as you’re happy, your own opinion matters most.
My name is Treyah. I have been attending St. Joes for six years. I’ve participated in basketball since middle school, dancing, cheerleading, softball, and also have been in the Native American Club.
My favorite memory would have to be my sophomore year when a couple girls and I wanted to go to the playground in the evening. We asked our houseparent, Angie, if we could go, but she was unsure about it. She said what if someone were to kidnap us or something. She eventually let us go. Long story short, she scared the heck out of us that night and disguising herself. It’s funny to think about now, but at the time we were mad about it.
I would like to thank ALL THE STAFF that helped me throughout my years. A HUGE thanks to Kathrine and Fred, Angela and Bob, Norm and Lilli for putting up with me the longest, and also Aaron and Melissa for helping me out a lot this year. Oh yeah and Mrs. Vanderley: thanks for probably being the best teacher. I cannot forget my parents who are my biggest supporters out there. I love you guys. Also, my counselor, Amanda: thank you for being there all the time. Although sometimes we don’t always agree, I appreciate your help the most! I guess a big thank you to Joe for being the best cousin, and Krista!!
My plans for next year is to attend the University of South Dakota. I’m undecided on what to do yet. My advice for younger students (and I know you hear this a lot but trust me, you need to do it) is do your work. Get it done! Do not fall behind in school. If you plan on doing sports, please take that advice. Don’t forget to have fun, though. Before you know it, you’ll be a senior and wonder why the years went so fast. It does go by fast, so be involved in things, have fun, and take advantage of opportunities.
My name is Wankiya and I have attended St. Joseph’s for six years. I was involved in basketball, football, softball and archery in middle school. During high school, I participated in basketball and football.
A few favorite memories are the home trips, Seventh Grade Cultural Trip, riding bikes in the rain, playing hide-and-seek and ball tag.
Thank you to the houseparents — a couple of the houseparents are Dick and Carol, Paula, Joseph— and my family and friends.
My plans for next year are to attend Mitchell Technical Institute to earn a degree in welding.
My advice for the younger kids is to do your homework on time. I know it sounds I’m barking up the same tree, but it’s true. Don’t be like me and wait until the very, very last minute to do your work.
Philámayaye — thank you — for the support and encouragement you so generously share with the Lakota students!
Meet our 2018 Seniors
My name is Danielle. I have attended St. Joseph’s Indian School for eight non-consecutive years, and have been a part of the high school program for two and a half years.
In middle school at St. Joseph’s, I was a part of t-ball (second-third grade). In fourth through sixth grade, I played basketball. I participated in volleyball my seventh grade year. During high school, I have been a part of various activities (not all with Chamberlain High School). I participated in JROTC, Women’s Society, FBLA and International Club in high school. Through Chamberlain High School, I have participated in Native American Club for two and half years and have had the opportunity to serve as president for two years. I have also taken part in the LNI Knowledge Bowl Team. Lastly, I had the honor to be selected as royalty in 2014-2015 as Miss Chamberlain High School, and in 2017 I was crowned Miss St. Joseph’s Indian School.
My favorite memory would have to be working on campus for the last two years during the summer with the children because, let me tell you, each and every one of those children have a personality that is unforgettable. I enjoyed working with the summer home and having the opportunity to be a part of the students’ lives.
None of my future plans have been set in stone, although I do know that when I attend college, I want to study Native American Studies and the Lakota language and history. I would also like to study Human Services.
I would like to thank my houseparents who worked in the Afra, Summerlee and Pinger homes, because those years were rough. The staff, believe it or not, have impacted my life one way or another. I would also like to thank my counselors — old and new — Sherry, Robyn and Darcy for always being there for me throughout school and never giving up on me. I cannot forget Lilli and Norm or Aaron and Melissa for giving me guidance through this last year. It was rough but thank you.
And the advice to younger students … the more obvious advice is to get your work done, because you cannot live your dreams if you do not have an education, (this isn’t the 1950s people). But MY advice is to never let someone else’s negative opinions about you, or something you have a love and passion for, define who you are. And always remember that plans are always changing so do not get discouraged if there is a different outcome. Everything happens for a reason.
My name is Hope and I’ve attended St. Joseph’s Indian School since I was in sixth grade, so I have been here for 7 years.
I wasn’t involved in activities my freshman year of high school. In my sophomore year, I joined choir and the fall play. I’ve been in the productions of Wizard of Oz, You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown and Peter and the Starcatcher. I was a boys basketball cheerleader my junior year. During my senior year, I was a cheerleader for football and boys basketball.
My favorite memory was winning the Spirit of Six Award at the boys’ state basketball tournament for the second year in a row, which has never been done before.
I would like to thank my counselor Amanda for looking after me, so I don’t get into more trouble than I already have, Kathryn for being the best cook I ever did meet, Judy for brightening my day, Krista for helping me with all of my college plans and preparing me for all of it, and Joe.
My advice to younger students is to get out there. Go take adventures — even if they’re small ones — like joining a club, a sports team or even a play. Little adventures like that will help you with the big one — life. And also, don’t forget to do your homework. Never fall behind, it’s very hard to catch up. Trust me, I would know.
My name is Kayla and I’ve attended St. Joe’s for 7 years. I’ve been involved in the fall play for the last two years.
My favorite memory is obviously really hard to pick, but the ones that come to mind are freshman orientation and the seventh grade cultural trip.
I’d like to thank Brittney and Phil for their patience, Bob and Angie for always making me laugh, Norm and Lilli for teaching me to appreciate the small things, Krista for helping me plan out my future, my mama bear Kathryn, Rich and Tara for being fun houseparents, and especially Amanda for always being my biggest supporter and for just about everything else.
This summer I will complete basic training for the National Guard, and then be off to college at Black Hills State University. My advice to younger students is don’t stress too much — but that doesn’t mean don’t try. Take all the opportunities that you can.
My name is Kezrai and I have been attending St. Joseph’s Indian School since fifth grade.
While attending St. Joseph’s I was involved in volleyball, basketball and softball. In high school, I was involved in the fall play as a crew member. I had lots of fun with my partner in crime, Krista.
One of my favorite memories would have to be when we went to Minnesota for our home trip.
I would like to thank my mom most of all because she’s my best friend and has helped me with everything. I would also like to thank people that helped me through all my years at St. Joseph’s. I would like to thank Al and Nancy for being such great people and my counselor, Amanda, for dealing with me throughout the years.
My plans for next year are undecided because I have several plans in mind, but I’m still unsure of which I want to pursue.
My name is Krista and I have attended St. Joseph’s Indian School since eighth grade, so about five years. While at St. Joe’s, I was involved in basketball and volleyball.
At Chamberlain High School, I was involved in Native American Club, the fall play and the St. Joseph’s LNI team.
My favorite memory is this year’s home trip. I would like to thank my houseparents along the way, Rachel and Chuck, Rich and Tara and Bonnie and Fahad. I would also like to send a shout out to Mrs. Waterbury.
My advice to the younger kids is don’t get in trouble … or just don’t get caught.
My plans after high school are to enlist in the Navy and become a corpsman.
My name is Reyna and I have attended St. Joseph’s Indian School for five years — since eighth grade.
I was the manager of the volleyball team during my first year at St. Joseph’s, but not in high school.
My favorite memory at St. Joseph’s was when some of the girls and I had a pillow fight in the middle of the night and then we got caught.
I would like to thank Julie, my counselor. She helped me the last four years before leaving St. Joseph’s. I would also like to thank my houseparents, Bob and Angie. They were my houseparents for three years and were a lot of fun.
My advice to younger students is to do what you enjoy.
I was accepted into Black Hills State University. I’m going to take a year off to work before attending college.
My name is TJ and I’ve attended St. Joseph’s Indian School since fourth grade.
In middle school, I was involved in cross country, football, basketball, track and softball. In high school, I joined basketball.
My favorite memory at St. Joseph’s was my birthday in 2017 when Al and Nancy took Sarah Anne, Ashley, my big dog Justin and me out to eat. When we got back, Sarah, Ash and I went to the movies. We didn’t do too much, but I felt really content and happy. I was spending time with the people closest to me at St. Joseph’s. I also met Ashley’s bunny.
I want to thank Rich, Tara and Annie. Al and Nancy — my years with you guys were a blessing. If I could, I would re-live some of the moments I had with you guys.
My advice to the younger students is don’t be afraid to make buddies. Good and bad times feel better when you have someone to share the moment with.
Pilamaya — thank you — for the support and encouragement you so generously share with the Lakota students!
Meet our 2017 Seniors
My name is Lily. I have attended St. Joseph’s for four years!
During my time at St. Joseph’s and Chamberlain High School, I have been involved in helping with Inipis (sweat lodge ceremonies), track, Native American Club, Science Club, fall plays, choir, oral interpretation and cheerleading. I believe that staying busy in activities is a good way to socialize and to deal with negative feelings.
My favorite St. Joseph’s memory was my sixteenth birthday. My friends made my birthday a big deal and threw me three different birthday parties!
My favorite memory while attending Chamberlain High School was participating in oral interpretation — practicing and hearing such deep pieces!
There’s so many people to thank, but most of all I’d like to thank Al and Nancy. As my houseparents, they’ve been with me since the very beginning and they’ve only ever been kind to me. They truly are lovely people and I cherish them dearly. I’d also like to thank Aaron ‘Big A’ and Melissa. ‘Big A’ never fails to make me feel better and Melissa always tries her best.
As a kid, I always dreamed of what I wanted to be, but in middle school I realized that my ultimate goal is to be content and happy, not only with my life, but also with myself. After graduation, I plan to pursue a degree in Astrophysics.
My advice to other students is to just get your work done! It saves you in the end. Also, try to stay happy and get involved in things. Don’t take things for granted. Appreciate what you have. Stand up for yourself. Be nice to everyone (especially if they don’t deserve it).
My name is Danielle. I have attended St. Joseph’s for five years!
During my time at St. Joseph’s and Chamberlain High School, I have been involved with volleyball, cheerleading, concert choir, Science Club, HOSA (Health Occupation Students of America), Tech Club, fall plays, Native American Club, yearbook committee and was also a boys’ basketball manager.
My favorite St. Joseph’s memory was my trip to Germany! The views were breathtaking and the memories are things I will never forget.
My favorite memory while attending Chamberlain High School would definitely be going to the State A Basketball Tournament both my junior and senior year as part of the cheerleading squad. Both years, our squad won the Spirit of 6 Award!
I’d like to thank all of my houseparents — Stephanie, Lisa, Brian, Angie, Bob, Rich, Tara, Melissa, Aaron, Bonnie, Fahad, Al and Nancy. I’d also like to thank Dee for helping me get through the process of getting into college and for always being there for me. Furthermore, I’d like to thank my counselor Amanda, all of my teachers at Chamberlain High School and my family.
After graduation, I plan on attending South Dakota State University to become a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner.
My advice to other students is to simply appreciate the moments you have before they’re memories, always give your all in everything you do, and remember that it’s okay to be independent and get to know yourself instead of just being one of the ‘cool kids’.
My name is Ashley. I’ve been attending St. Joseph’s since the second grade, so I’ve been here 11 years!
During my time at St. Joseph’s and Chamberlain High School, I have been involved in basketball, volleyball, softball, t-ball, fall plays and one-act plays.
My favorite St. Joseph’s memory was my trip to Germany. I enjoyed leading the group everywhere without a map and we always got where we needed to go! Some more of my favorite memories include my freshman year in the Crane Home and our home trip to Minnesota this year.
I would like to thank everyone who had to deal with me all these years, because I can sometimes be a handful!
I am still trying to figure out what my next steps are after graduation. Although I don’t know exactly what I am going to do, I do know that it will be great.
My advice for other students is to stay in school and stay away from drugs. Find what you love to do and do it. Be your own person, because your life doesn’t revolve around others!
My name is Justin. I have attended St. Josephs’ for six years.
During my time at St. Joseph’s and Chamberlain High School, I was part of the Lakota Nation Invitational Quiz Bowl Team which was fun.
I’ve had so many great memories, I have a hard time picking just one!
I would like to thank my counselor Mike, Aaron and Melissa and all the houseparents that I have had over the years.
After graduation, I will be attending Lake Area Technical Institute in Watertown, South Dakota to study welding. I am interested in pursuing deep sea welding as a career.
My advice for the younger students is to just do your own thing and don’t be a sheep that follows the rest of the herd.
Pilamaya — thank you — for the support and encouragement you so generously share with the Lakota students!
Meet our 2016 Seniors
My name is Andrew. I have attended St. Joseph’s for the past six years. At Chamberlain High School, I was involved in theatre, participating in the plays produced all four years.
I don’t have one particular memory of school but there have been many!
I would like to thank all my old houseparents that I have had helped me through the years.
My future plan is to attend college.
My words of advice for the younger students are to take school seriously, try hard and get good grades. It makes things much easier in the long run!
My name is Davis. I have attended St. Joseph’s since my 8th grade year.
While at CHS, I was involved with baseball and football. I was also a member of the basketball team that received 4th place at the 2016 state basketball tournament! While in junior high, I played basketball, softball and was on the bowling league.
One of funniest memories while at St. Joe’s was back in middle school. When I first arrived, I was placed in the 7th grade for a while until I finally figured out I was in the wrong grade! I told someone I thought I was in the wrong grade and they quickly moved me to the correct grade, which was 8th.
I can’t single out just one favorite memory at St. Joseph’s because there are many crazy ones with all my friends and houseparents. However, making it to the state basketball tournament will always be one of my favorite memories.
I would like to thank all my houseparents, counselors and friends I have made at St. Joe’s. I also want to thank my grandma for sending me here because attending school here has given me so much. There are so many opportunities for me and for my future. I would like to thank everyone who has helped me throughout my high school years.
Some advice I would like to share with younger students is to always stay on top of your school work. Get the work done or you’ll fall behind. Also, join activities like sports that will help you meet new friends. Try to get out of your comfort zone and meet new people. Most importantly, just be yourself.
At this point I am undecided what I will do after graduation. I have narrowed it down to either attend Lake Area Technical Institute for law enforcement or enlist into the Army in the military police department.
My name is Gabriel. I have been attending St. Joe’s since the 7th grade.
While I attended Chamberlain High School, I was on the basketball, football, baseball and track teams. I also have been a part of the Native American Club and Science Club.
One of my favorite memories is going on the Germany Exchange Trip. It was such an amazing experience to travel and see different countries. Another great memory was the Freshmen Transition Trip.
I would like to thank my mom, grandma, houseparents and teachers and anyone else I may forgotten. Everyone helped me become who I am today.
I plan on attending Black Hills State University or University of South Dakota for law enforcement and teaching.
My advice to younger students is to take school seriously. Don’t count the days as time in high school goes quickly.
My name is Irene. I am proud to say that I have been attending St. Josephs since I was 6 years old and coming in as a first grader.
I have played basketball, volleyball, track, bowling leagues, intercity, and archery in my middle school years. Not to mention t-ball back when I was a tiny 1st-3rd grader, then moving up to softball.
I feel that I have been very successful in staying active and busy throughout my high school career. I have participated in basketball and track my freshman and sophomore years were I was put on the varsity team. I have also been dedicated to volleyball since the first day I was given the chance to be on a team. I went to state my first year of golf as a junior. My senior year I decided to be a boys’ basketball cheerleader. I want to finish out my high school career in track.
I have been active, not only in sports, but the fine arts as well. I am involved in concert choir and was a member of the crew for both the fall play and one acts. I also participated in show choir; we went on tour and also performed a few times for the school. I didn’t realize much I was involved in until I saw it written down!
The many years I have spent here at St. Joe’s makes it hard to decide what my favorite memory is. I have met so many people and the experiences are endless, it’s hard to favor one over another. I always loved the little moments I would keep to myself where I would have a realization of how blessed I am to be here. Even if it was going on a home trip, on my way to school, helping with a fundraiser, laughing with friends, or even having dinner every night with some of the best people I will ever meet.
Like everything else, the list of people I would like to thank is endless — from first grade teachers and counselors to my high school coaches and advisors. I want to give a special thanks to my family and friends that have made an impact on my life since day one. I find it sad that I will have to leave this place. I am growing up, and it’s time for a new chapter in my life to begin. Feelings are heavy but my head is held high. Thank you St. Joe’s for teaching me right.
My words of wisdom … Don’t procrastinate. You will regret it. Live outside of your comfort box, try new things, stray from all things negative, keep your future in mind.
I am enlisted into the Army as a 36X-Ray, which is a behavior health specialist. I leave for basic in Oklahoma for Ft. Sill then to Texas for AIT. From here … my life begins.
My name is Jacob “Turtle”. I have attended St. Joseph’s for the past four years.
While attending school at Chamberlain High School, I was involved in football, track and basketball while also volunteering as the gymnastics manager.
My favorite memory is yet to come — I can not wait to graduate and throw my cap in the air!
I would like to thank my counselor Scott, Tim and Jess for everything they’ve done for me.
My advice to younger students is to just get involved in whatever makes you happy. Being involved in extra activities makes school fun!
My plan after graduation is to ship to San Diego, California and earn the title of United State Marine. I look forward to becoming a proud member of the best branch in the United States Military. HOORAH!!
My name is Jeremy. I have attended St. Joe’s since I was in 7th grade.
In middle school, I was involved in basketball, football, soccer, track and softball. At Chamberlain High School, I was mainly involved in football where I was named back-to-back All-Conference Linebacker.
I have many memories from attending St. Joseph’s. One memory is the 8th grade Cultural Trip. Another memory great memory I have is the Germany Exchange trip. It was the best when we met up with the exchange students who went to France in London, England.
My future plans after graduation are to attend Fort Lewis College and play football and to find a career which best fits me.
I would like to thank all the teachers at CHS and all the staff members at St. Joe’s. I specifically want to thank Art Shanks, Patrick and Anita Lyden, Brian Perry and Bryan Rinehart. Without all of you, I would not be the person I am today.
My advice to the younger students is to pay attention, be involved in actives and don’t get behind in you school work! Stay away from bad habits!
My name is Katie. I have attended school at St. Joe’s since my 7th grade year.
I have been involved in many activities at Chamberlain High School. I was involved with Native American Club, Science Club, Drama Club and the Big Sisters/Little Sisters Club. I was involved in Volleyball my 8th grade year. I was also in Student Exchange and softball while in middle school.
I have too many favorite memories to list. It would be like asking me to count the stars in the sky because I have so many!
I would like to thank everyone who worked with me over the past years. Without their support, I would not be where I am today.
Some of my advice I have for younger students is that the world is a big place. It doesn’t revolve around one person or place. Get out of your comfort zone and go see what is out there.
I am undecided about my plans at this point. I would like to attend college but unsure of my major.
My name is Martina. I have been attending St. Joe’s for 11 years.
I was involved in volleyball (which I think is the best sport in the world) while attending Chamberlain High School. I was also involved in the Science Club and with basketball during my high school years. When I was in middle school, I danced at powwows.
I have many favorite memories while attending school at St. Joe’s. One of my favorites would have to be just being in the Stevens Home with Frank and Wanda Bunker as my houseparents. My 6-8 grade years were the bomb in the Stevens Home! I loved playing “Tremors” with Wanda and the other girls. We listened to music channels while getting ready for school and played SingStar with the girls in the home. Yeah, those years were pretty great.
I would like to thank all of my houseparents and teachers that I've had in the past years. I want to thank everyone that has helped and put up with me through the years that I've been here, because I know I was a handful … Just kidding, I wasn't. 🙂
If there was any advice I would like to give students, it would be to always try your best on your school work and pay attention. I always did and, hey, it helped me get good grades. Also, seize the day because middle school and high school goes by way faster than you think it will. Make memories while you can. Join sports and other extra-curricular activities in middle school and/or high school because it will help you to develop lots of great friends. Don't be afraid to step out of your comfort zone, because believe me, majority of the time it'll be worth the try.
I have enlisted with the US Army and will be an active duty solider after graduation. I am a Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear Specialist. After graduation I am off to Missouri for Basic Training and my AIT. Then I will travel the world, which is very exciting for me.
My name is Carol “Mia”. I have attended St. Joseph’s for five years.
I was involved with basketball, softball and bowling while I attended St. Joseph's Indian School. While in high school at Chamberlain High School, I was involved in Native American Club.
My favorite memory while attending St. Joseph’s took place during my 11th grade year. My home went to Sioux Falls to shop all day. After shopping at the mall, we stopped at Walmart to grab a few last minute things. I bought some headphones but was struggling to open them. My houseparent Nancy offered the car keys and, in the process, the keys broke! We were all stuck in Sioux Falls until our other houseparent Al could come all the way from Chamberlain to give us the other set of keys.
I would like to thank EVERYONE that helped me out during my time at St. Joseph’s. Special shout outs to Bryan, Chris, my Family Service Counselor Amanda and Nancy and Al.
My advice to younger students is to keep up in high school — do not fall behind whatsoever! Join activities and sports. Push yourself to try new things. Get to know a lot of people outside of St. Joseph’s. Do not get in trouble, make the right decisions. Even though St. Joseph’s may seem strict, it’s for your benefit — you will thank them in the future! Enjoy your time, all your time while in high school and at St. Joseph’s. Time goes by quick, make sure to have fun.
My plans after graduation are to attend the University of South Dakota to complete my generals and major in pre-law before heading to law school in San Francisco, California.
My name is Ronald “Trey”. I first attended St Joseph’s my 2nd grade year through 5th grade. I then left for a couple years and returned in 7th grade and have been here ever since.
While attending CHS, I was involved with basketball and football.
I really don’t have one favorite memory that stands out as there are many — St. Joe’s is a good place to attend school.
I would like to thank all my houseparents I’ve had since I started school here. I would also like to thank Scott Woster for helping me throughout my time at St. Joe’s. Another thanks goes to my grandmother Carole Seeking Land and my mother Kessa.
My advice to younger students is to take academics seriously. Also, really do what makes you happy.
I plan to attend college for Business Management, then I plan to go wherever my life takes me from there.
Pilamaya — thank you — for the support and encouragement you so generously share with the Lakota students!
Meet our 2015 Seniors
My name is Shawn. I have been attending school at St. Joseph's Indian School since fifth grade. I like St. Joseph’s because staff have done a lot for me and helped me become who I am today.
While in high school at Chamberlain High School, l was involved in football and basketball. In football, I was nominated for the All-Conference Team two years in a row. I also broke two school records with six touchdowns and 280 rushing yards in one game, which I’m very proud of.
My favorite memory is from my seventh grade year when I got to go to Washington, DC on an educational trip. We got to see a lot of sites and the best part of the trip was going to a NBA game.
I would like to thank all my houseparents — my time attending school here has helped me a lot. My plans after high school are to get a job and work or maybe attend Haskell University in Kansas.
My advice to other students is to just stay in school and keep up on your work. Most importantly, have fun!
My name is Kyran and I have attended St. Joseph’s for ten years. These past few months, I’ve really taken a step back and tried to enjoy my time here, knowing it’s my final year. To be involved with St. Joseph’s for so long is really an amazing accomplishment for me!
I’ve participated in a bunch of different activities while attending high school. The clubs I’ve been a part of include the Native American Club, Drama Club, and FFA (Future Farmers of America). I have participated in basketball, baseball, and football.
I have made countless memories while at St. Joseph’s. One of my favorites is the time I went to Maine for a donor luncheon. Meeting the people who make this place possible was really extraordinary.
I want to thank every single one of my houseparents. I don’t know how you put up with me, but I really appreciate it. For the staff and teachers, all of the Family Service Counselors as well, words can’t express how much I thank you guys for being there for me. You guys really are special, so just another thanks to everyone who works at St. Joseph’s.
My plan for next year is to attend the University of South Dakota and major in business. Some advice I’d like to share is don’t be afraid to try anything you really want to do. You can’t be afraid to fail — failing is a part of life and it will only help you get better. Also, if you’re going to do anything, do it to the best of your ability.
My name is Erica and I came to St. Joseph’s in third grade. I have been involved in a lot while attending St. Joseph’s, including track, cross country, cheerleading, basketball, tee-ball, pep club, volleyball and student council. When I started at Chamberlain High School I grew an interest in the performing arts. I was involved in choir, show choir, one act plays, and fall plays.
I do not have a particular memory that sticks out … being here for so many years, a lot of memories come to mind!
I am really undecided on what my plans for the future will be. What I want to do with my life has been a question since I was a little girl. When asked the question, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” I always gave a different answer, ranging from a bus driver to an actress. Now I am more focused on filmography and directing.
I have a long list of staff that I would like to thank; I’m so grateful for all St. Joseph’s staff and their families. You all helped me through everything, helping me to become who I am today.
The advice I will give to you younger students is this: you don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone. St. Joseph’s may seem horrible with all the rules and CONSEQUENCES, but you won’t know what you have until it’s gone. It is important to realize all the good stuff St. Joseph’s does for you. Once you leave and graduate, you will understand where you would be without it. I certainly wouldn’t have come this far without St. Joseph’s.
My name is Angela and I am a member of the Oglala Sioux Tribe. I have been at St. Joes for six and a half years. I started second semester of my fifth grade year. I left after my freshmen year and I came for my junior year. In fifth and seventh grades I was in softball. Throughout middle school I was in basketball and volleyball. In high school I have been a member of the Native American Club and served as President my senior year. I have been a big sister for St. Joseph’s Big Sister/Little Sister program. I have worked as a dishwasher at a restaurant, at St. Joseph’s Thrift Store and as a junior houseparent in the summer break home. My senior year I got a job as a Dietary Aid at the local hospital and that was my favorite job.
My favorite years at St. Joseph’s were middle school and being in the Mathias Home. Another favorite memory is going to Washington, DC. I really liked the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial. My favorite part of that trip was going to the Arlington National Cemetery and seeing the resting places of Ted, Bobby, Jack, Jacqueline, Patrick and Arabella Kennedy.
I am not sure what my plans are for the future, but I love to travel. I did my eighth grade presentation on JFK and I wrote my research paper on JFK, so I was thinking of joining the Peace Corps. I will go to college and I want to be a role model for my siblings. Hopefully, they will go even farther than I do. I am not sure of what I want to major in, but I like math, science, history and Native American Studies.
There are so many people I want to thank but I will shorten the list and say thanks to all my teachers at St. Joseph’s and Chamberlain High School, my houseparents over the years and other staff members at St. Joseph’s. I also want to thank my auntie Cheryl and uncle Marty for being the best guardians I ever had, and my siblings for being my inspiration to further myself.
My advice for everyone is if you want to do something — anything — you can do it. There are people in your life that will be proud of everything you do and there will be people who will never be proud of anything you do. All that really matters is what you want.
If you want to get a good job instead of working at McDonalds, then you need to have the work ethic. If you want a good job you should go to college. You have to really work hard to do what you want and I would recommend taking classes that challenge you. Work hard now and play later.
My name is RJ and I have been attending St. Joseph’s since I was in first grade. During my tenure at St. Joseph’s Indian School, I have been involved in Native American Club, Teenage Republicans and Drama Club.
My favorite memory while attending school at St. Joseph’s is going on a donor luncheon trip to San Francisco, California.
I would like to thank my houseparents and other St. Joseph’s staff, especially high school staff and my counselor Scott, for all their help.
My future plans are to attend South Dakota State University and major in History Education.
My advice for the younger students is to get involved in school and study hard. It pays to have good grades.
My name is JaTonne and I’ve attended school at St. Joseph’s since fifth grade. At Chamberlain High School, I have been involved in the theatre department. I played guitar for a couple of the high school plays and for show choir.
My favorite memory while attending St. Joseph’s was winning the high school talent show. I entered the talent show when I was in eighth grade with two of my friends and we won the competition!
My plan after graduation is to go to school in Arizona and major in Audio Engineering. I would like to say thank you to every single houseparent I have had throughout the years. My houseparents have helped me become the person I am today and helped me prepare for the road ahead. Thank you!