Alumni Stories of “The New Normal”

March 31, 2020

While our current Shattuck-St. Mary’s students have had their world turned upside down, they’re certainly not the only ones. All over the world, SSM alumni have also had to adjust to the recent pandemic, especially as the number of confirmed cases rises in the United States.

Many SSM alumni have decided to use their gifts and resources to contribute to their communities in a positive way during this turbulent time.

As featured on The Today Show, Jonathan Toews ’05 recently donated $100,000 to the COVID-19 relief effort in Chicago, where he plays for the Chicago Blackhawks. He also sent a sweet personal message to a seven-year-old boy who had been excited to attend a Chicago Blackhawks game on his birthday before it was canceled.

Mark Prihodko ’16, a cellist and alum of the Pre-Conservatory Center of Excellence, has been using social media to post mini-concerts from his apartment in Manhattan as a way of lifting everyone’s spirits. After graduating from SSM, he went on to attend the Julliard School. His videos allow viewers to hear live classical music even if they can’t physically attend concerts anymore. He began with Bach’s Suite No. 1 (Gigue), using the tag #livefromhome.

His first video was shared by Joan Lewis-Osborne, a former SSM teacher, and Mark replied, commenting, “The only reason I can understand what is happening in the US now is you. Your lectures shaped my understanding of the politics, government and much more! Thank you!”

It’s important to remember that many other alums are “fighting on the front lines” of the COVID-19 crisis as well. SSM Hockey alums Kathleen Rogan ’10 and Margo Miller ’08 work as nurses in the emergency room at their local hospital in Grand Forks, ND. They remind us to stay safe at home, because their job doesn’t allow them to do the same. We are so proud of them and all the other SSM community members doing their part to fight this global problem.

Shattuck-St. Mary’s is committed to supporting all of our global community during the pandemic. If you have stories of hope, generosity, or are somehow in need, please share them with us at [email protected], and we’ll continue to add them to our website. We’re ALL IN this together!

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