The Diocese of Brooklyn is proud to announce St. Thomas Catholic Online Academy recently held its first graduation ceremony, where 12 students who completed the eighth-grade were awarded their diplomas.
Each of the graduates was featured individually and offered a reflection and words of encouragement from their classmates. The high school choice of each graduate was also featured as part of the graduation. The graduation ceremony was conducted fully online, and family and friends were able to log in to share in the special event.
Math teacher Mr. James Mastricovo, a former NYPD Sergeant, encouraged the graduates to take risks as they reach for their goals. MaryAnne Rubino, a graduate of the Class of 2022, delivered a reflection on the meaning of learning together remotely and the value of an online learning community.
Brother Guy Consolmagno, the Director of the Vatican Observatory, also addressed the graduates. The Vatican Observatory is an astronomical research and educational institution established by the Holy See.
In his remarks, Brother Consolmagno stated, “The more you learn, the more you realize there is to learn.” He continued to encourage the students to remember that God devotes all of His attention to each of them, and so in their life, they should, “spend some of your attention on Him and His creation.”
Dr. Stephen J. Haessler is the Principal of St. Thomas Catholic Online Academy. The school was officially launched in September 2020, in the wake of the Coronavirus pandemic. The K-8 Catholic Online Academy is chartered by the New York State Department of Education. For more information about this online Catholic education, visit stacoa.org or find them on Facebook or Instagram @STACatholicAcademy.
Brother Guy’s full video message can be found here: https://www.youtube.com/